Tagged: art

Stunning make-up inspired by tattoos

Make-up artist Pompberry  has created a collection of stunning make-up looks inspired by tattoo artists, including the likes of Emily Rose Murray and our illustration issue cover star, Danielle Rose.

Make-up inspired by Toni Donaire tattoo

Make-up inspired by Toni Donaire tattoo

Make-up inspired by Danielle Rose Tattoo

Make-up inspired by Danielle Rose tattoo

Make-up inspired by Emily Rose Murray Tattoo

Make-up inspired by Emily Rose Murray tattoo


Check out more of Pompberry’s make-up work on Instagram

House of Butterflies

Justin Taylor and Charlie Lane  are the creators of House of Butterflies, a small online business that sells framed butterflies, moth and beetles. The couple set all of the specimens themselves from their home in Maidstone, Kent. We chatted to Justin and Charlie to find out more about their arty adventures… 

House ofB

How did you start House of Butterflies? What do you create?  The House Of Butterflies started from an idea we had at a craft fair, where Charlie was selling prints and original artwork. We thought it would be fun to do something together, we both share a common interest in taxidermy and art so thought why not combine the two. The framed butterflies idea came from Justin’s grandparents house as they have a small collection of framed butterflies hanging in their hall way. We both thought how great they look and wondered if we could make something along the same lines. We sat and researched the idea for a month or so before finally taking the plunge and having a go.

What inspires you? The inspiration for our boxes comes from the idea of preserving something beautiful. They are inspired a lot by the seasons, nature and by things we really like.  We find when we sit and talk about ideas we tend to inspire each other. We try to choose the butterflies or moths first and then try to match the background to them rather than the other way around. The art in general is inspired by the outdoors; gardens, plants and animals.


Do you have a background in art? 
Charlie: Yes, I studied at Maidstone UCA and have a degree in print making. I learnt a lot about etching and I helped with adult courses in a print making studio. I have done a lot of commission work for small businesses, band logos and for special occasions. I spent a couple of years in the tattoo industry working in a couple of small studios.

Where do you source your items from? We source all of our specimens from a entomologist based in the UK. He sources all of his specimens from butterfly farms abroad, people hear “butterfly farm” and usually think how terrible. When actually they are the most ethical way to source specimens, they bring employment to poor areas and stop the practice of wild collecting which has had a devastating affect on some species. Finding an ethical source and supplier was a big thing for us, a lot of time and effort went in to finding the right supplier with the legitimate source.


How do you create them? What is the process? The process is a fairly long one and takes time and patience, we had a few disasters at the beginning. We are completely self taught when it comes to the setting of the butterflies and it was a total case of trial and error. Internet videos make it look easier than it actually is.

The process starts by having to relax the butterfly, moth or beetle as they arrived to us in a dry/closed state. The specimens go into a relaxing tub which has a mild chemical solution in it. The chemical solution breaks down the enzymes in the specimens body making it pliable again. The specimens stay in the relaxing box until the reach this state, once there you can remove them and start the setting process. Opening the specimens is always the most fun part as you get see the true glory of what your setting. We pin the specimen to a setting board, which is a board with a small channel down the centre to hold the specimens body in place when you spread the wings. Then we very carefully pull the wings into the position we want using tweezers and then with strips of wax paper pin the wings so they are secure. We then leave them to dry out again for a number of days, depending on size. Then we unpin the specimen and then you have a set specimen, which is always very rewarding.

The vintage frames we stain ourselves to give them that old look, then we add the vintage artwork and add specimens we think work well with the artwork.


Where can people buy pieces? Do you do commissions? We have a small Etsy shop where people can buy from us, we update regularly with new items as we like to keep a good variety of pieces on there. We can be found on Instagramwhere with have a direct link to our store.

We take on commission work and our always up for a challenge, whether it be artwork or a specific butterfly or a combination of the two, we will always try our best to accommodate.


What are your plans for the future? We are hoping to keep going and maybe expand more, we do a lot of craft stalls, especially in the winter months leading up to Christmas. The big plan is to have a small high street shop where people can come in and browse.


How did you meet? How long have you been together? We met through a mutual friend who Charlie was tattooing, she thought we would get on well, turns out she was right. We had a few dates, realised we shared a lot of common interests and thats about it, and people say romance is dead! We have been together now for two years.

Can you tell us about your tattoos?
My tattoos are a mix of things that remind me of all the places I have lived across the world as a kid, and pattern work that I’m really into. I like the geometric and dot work tattoo styles as it is how I myself draw. I like the work of Vana Chanelle, who has tattooed me a few times, along with Dan Frye who done a stunning traditional style Indian bride on my arm. I have tattooed myself a lot.

Justin: I’m a big fan of traditional style tattoos and love fat lined pieces. I have a lot of skateboard related tattoos as it used to be my favourite past time. I have a bit of a mix of black and grey, traditional colour and pattern work. I have my good friend Ben Griffiths to thank for a lot of my work, also Dan Frye and his partner EJ Miles.


Art Exhibition: Womanstanley 2


Womanstanley 2 is a one-day-only exhibition that celebrates women from the North of England: past, present and future. The brainchild of like-minded artists Sophie New and Roxanne Ball, friends who met at Leeds College of Art and quickly realised that they both wanted to bring the excitement of pop-up, D.I.Y city art exhibitions, to their home.

Womanstanley 2 will take place on 22 August at Warrington Sports Club, Walton Lea Road, Higher Walton, Warrington, Cheshire, WA4 6SJ. The event costs £3. For more information on the event and to RSVP please contact womanstanley@gmail.com

Womanstanley is three years old and so far it has successfully created a platform where creative individuals, living in Warrington and surrounding areas can express themselves, meet like-minded artists and celebrate the talent that is right on the doorstep. It is a space to share creative interests, music and stories with women at the core. Womanstanley started as a legacy to the Women’s Art Revolution and continues to grow as more people become involved, making an exhibition from scratch in a location that is a far cry from a traditional gallery setting.


Investment of Exchange by Sophie New

The exhibitors in Womanstanley 2 have chosen diverse routes, from a royal portrait of Cilla Black by Kim Thackeray, Roxanne Ball’s portrayal of Margery Booth the Wigan ‘Knicker Spy’ to Sarah Harris who gives life to ‘Sylvia the cyst’. A group of five young women from Priestley College who study dance together, join forces to create a piece for camera on Formby Beach.

Work in Progress Cilla Black by Kim Thackeray


Roxanne Ball

Sophie New, a student studying at the Royal College of Art was inspired by an embroidered wedding jacket from Gujarat for one of her core projects. This jacket led her to investigate contemporary ideas surrounding marriage and relationships. Interviews were carried out with the public and she collected personal stories, photographs and embroideries. With this information new images were created and formed fragments of a new piece of clothing, a veil for two people, of any gender, rather than traditionally just for the bride. Sophie New brings this piece from an exhibition at the Pitt Rivers Museum in Oxford and the audience are invited to add their own marriage stories.

Local Warrington town centre group, Dolly’s Sewing School has got involved by making work about the Cockhedge Cotton Mill and members of the Blooming Art group run by exhibiting artist Gail Stubbings are looking into nature / nurture.

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Emily Calland

Womanstanley 2 will also see performances from the soulful singer Bella New, ‘industrial estate based four-piece’, Giest, Bathymetry, an Indie band that sound like ‘night time when it’s raining and you’ve forgotten a hat’ and Hello Mabel, a ‘female acoustic twosome featuring members of Roughneck Riot and Fish Bastard.’

On the day there will be drinks available from the lovely bar staff at the Warrington Sports Club and an arts and crafts stall where exhibiting artists will be selling all sorts of items ranging from Rosa Silva’s swimwear, Cat Stroud’s satirical gender identity zine to Michelle Price of Kleinemaus’  handmade pencil cases.

Other artists exhibiting include; Beth Davenport, Cameron Brown, Lotte Anne, Natalie Wardle, Alex Dodgson, Lucy Hurst, Lauren Muir, Alanna Heston, Laura Jane, Rachel Haney, Julia Pantkowska, Saffa Khan Isobel Harrop Liz Hough, Tilly Dagnall, Karly McCaig, Becca Hunter, Mary Dickinson, John Dickinson, Jim Williamson, Gordon Firth, Rebecca Smith, Claire Hill, Melpomene, Abbi Hughes and last but not least Womanstanley’s Social media specialist Hayley Reid.

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Womanstanley 2 poster, by Emily Calland

The Art of Alex Gross

Alex Gross is an LA based artist who creates incredible oil paintings that often explore the themes of globalisation, commercialism and beauty. His works suggest that in the world we live in, it is impossible to escape consumerist and media pressures.

Memory Fragments, 2015, oil on canvas, 40.25 x 53.5 inches

Candy Crush | Oil on Canvas | 48.25” x 33.5″ | 2014

Selfie | Oil on Canvas | 22” x 15″ | 2014

Come to where the flavor is. | Oil on Panel | 20.5” x 18” | 2010

Original Sin | Oil on Canvas | 54” x 56” | 2011

Siren | Oil on panel | 28″ x 45″ | 2004

Lessons in drag

Anyone who thought that drag wasn’t worthy of being called ‘art’ have been proved very wrong… The UK has become the first country ever to offer a module in the art of drag queens and kings as part of the performing arts, dance and drama degree at Edge Hill University in Lancashire.  The module will include how to perfect a lip sync, the use of makeup and costume, comedy and general stage performance.  Theories surrounding gay, lesbian and transgender activism will also be included.

American drag queen superstar, Ru Paul

The senior lecturer of the course, Mark Edwards was in charge of pushing the module forward.

“This module not only explores drag as a highly camp performance art, it also engages with complex gender, feminist and queer theory to explore the social and political implication of ‘doing gender’ in performance. Drag as a performance art form has seen a relative decline in the past decade, yet there are new and exciting emerging forms coming through which makes this module all the more relevant to performance contexts. There’s a lot more to drag studies than wigs, make-up and high heels!”

 Trixie Mattel with British drag queen, Meth who also runs the London drag night, The Meth Lab

This groundbreaking step forward for the LGBT community comes in the same month as the closure of infamous pub, The Black Cap which used to host The Meth Lab – one of the most popular drag nights in London.  Last week saw a large protest outside the venue with many famous faces of the drag community rallying together to prove their undying love for this iconic venue. Paul McGill, owner of Camden securities which agreed terms on the pub in December stated, “It’s a site of historical value, we understant that. We feel we are saving it as a venue, not destroying it.” Only time will tell if McGill holds any truth in what he says!

 Female drag star, Tete Bang who was a long running performer at The Black Cap.

Mobile tattoo parlour collects 200 pictures and stories

A mobile tattoo parlour has been touring Bristol, encouraging the public to document their tattoos with photographs and share their stories. The project “I Will Always Have You” will be featured in the city’s art and culture show and started in Knowle West in June 2014.

Arts producer Melissa Mean curated the exhibition in order to gather memories and stories behind tattoos to add to growing digital archives.

By exploring the power of personal narratives and the construction of character through body art, we hope to better understand the growing popularity of tattoos across the UK and the richness of Knowle West’s tattoo culture.

The exhibition will be on show at Knowle West Media Centre until Christmas. People can add their tattoos to the online archive.

Image and Melissa quoted from bbc.co.uk

The art of HANDIEDAN

Dutch artist Handiedan creates beautiful hand-cut collages inspired by traditional imagery drawing upon vintage female pin-ups. Handiedan collects the vintage frames herself to house her computer montage and scuptural collages.

The classic pin-up body parts are collected from old playing cards, antique sheet music, stamps and ornaments and laid over baroque and Victorian backdrops.

View more artwork at www.handiedan.com

Female Nudes as they really are

Artist Victoria Selbach paints female nudes as they really are – as their bodies truly are in domestic, everyday settings. The women are just that – women, cast free of social projections and celebrity airbrushing.

The human presence stripped bare of pretense and accouterments is simply alive, revealing a deeply personal identity, present in the light of one unique moment.

Victoria Selbach

Quoted from her artistic statement

Images from Huffington Post

Little Swastika

Tattoo artist Little Swastika who tattoos from a private studio in Germany (you can only contact him via email), created the word ‘Love’ over four people’s backs.

He painted the design by hand onto the four backs before beginning the long process of tattooing. Little Swastika frequently tattoos large back pieces, with designs flowing down both arms and legs, to him the whole body is a canvas.



Somewhere in middle of Italy in a private living room. 4 people and a total of around 32 hours of tattooing over 4 days on two working spaces. This was in a way killing me, but in another way showing me what is possible. When I started a few years ago with my first double piece I was just dreaming of making a tattoo in a size like this. Without many compromises at all.  Many thanks to all you 4 and to all other pieces who made me walk, more than once, over the borders of dreams and reality…..

Little Swastika

He has created tattoos over two people before but the love project is his biggest piece to date.

 Creating art is my key to escape from our life in our reality. Tattooing for me is a piece of freedom.

Little Swastika


Images and quotes from Little Swastika’s Facebook