Insider: Rai Robledo

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Back again for our latest edition of Insiders, we had the pleasure of interviewing photographer Rai Robledo. With his keen eye for detail, Rai shoots breath-taking photographs that capture viewers’ attention at first glance. Fashion editorials, concerts, weddings, and more, he does it all. From landscapes to portraits, his work is described as beautiful, elegant, and sensitive. Staying involved in every aspect of the photographic process from start to finish, Rai makes sure his passion and unique flair is transferred to every image. Although known specifically for his outstanding photography, Rai Robledo is also a blogger, social media ambassador and drummer in the group Hominidae. Find out more about Rai Robledo below!

1. What made you want to become a photographer?

I’ve always loved photography. I was really attracted by the light, compositions, and wanted to immortalise the things I saw.

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2. Where does your inspiration come from?

From many places. From everyday situations, films, photographs. Anything that happens to you can be a source of inspiration and be transformed into a photo.

3. What type of photos do you prefer taking?

I like photographing people in particular. I really like portraits, but also travel photography, landscapes, and objects. When you’re a photographer you have that urge to photograph everything, although people are what I like most, but they’re also the most difficult…

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4. What was the most difficult photo you’ve taken?

When a shot is complicated, or you see that it’s not going to turn out how you wanted, it’s better to just leave it, so there hasn’t really been any photo that was complicated to do.

5. Which famous person have you enjoyed working with most?

I don’t know. I almost prefer to take photos of anonymous people, although I’ve never had a bad experience working with somebody well known.

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6. What is it you like most about being a photographer?

Travelling, meeting interesting people. That each day is different. Some days you take photos, some days you edit, some days look for locations, or work on commissioned projects and photos. Every day is different so you never really know where you’ll be in a week’s time or what photos you’ll take.

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7. What would be your dream photo?

The ones I haven’t yet taken. There are lots and, luckily, they’re gradually appearing, almost without looking for them they come.

8. We know that, apart from being a photographer, you’re also in the band Hominidae and you’ve played at the FIB. What was the experience like?

Fantastic. We were the winners of the Radio3 demo project and that was the prize. Playing in a festival of that magnitude when you’re used to small, intimate venues was good fun and a great experience. We’re a dive bar band, with people and friends close, but of course we love experiences like playing at the FIB and we’d love to do it again.

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9. Your next plans?

To continue working, continue taking photos and to complete the second part of a project I started last year, called “Las chicas son rockeras” (The girls are rockers, where I take photos of girls wearing the t-shirt of their favourite rock, punk or heavy metal band. I already have 182 and I hope that with the second part of the project I can finish and publish them in a book.

Check out his website, blog, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

RRRIPP!! Paper Fashion

The 1960s was a groundbreaking era for fashion! Not only known for popularizing mini skirts or paisley prints, but also for a brief period of time paper dresses. First appearing in the United States in 1966 as a tool used to advertise products, the fad quickly popularized and spread to Europe. Many of these paper dresses are showcased at the RRRIPP!! Paper Fashion exhibit in London, featuring garments from the ATOPOS collection, organized by Vassilis Zidianakis and Stamos Fafalios.

paper fashionThe Big Ones for ’68 Paper Dress by Universal Fashions, USA, 1968. Photo: Panos Davios. © ATOPOS collection.

paper fashionBaby Ruth Paper Dress by Mars Manifacturing Comapny, North Carolina, 1969. Photo: Panos Davios. © ATOPOS collection

paper fashion2Bob Dylan Poster Dress, USA, c. 1967. Photo: Panos Davios. © ATOPOS collection.

This exhibit features the Souper Dress, an Andy Warhol inspired paper pop art dress made and sold during an advertising campaign by Campbell´s Soup Company.

soupThe Souper Dress, after Warhol, by Campbell’s Soup Company, New Jersey, 1968. Photo: Panos Davios. © ATOPOS collection.

Tracing the decade’s key political events, the exhibit displays this electoral campaign dress used to promote Robert Kennedy and Richard Nixon during 1968 presidential election.

NixonRichard Nixon electoral campaign Dress by Mars Manifacturing Company, North Carolina, 1968. Photo: Panos Davios. © ATOPOS collection.

kennedyRobert Kennedy electoral campaign Dress (with portrait by Norman Rockwell), New York, 1968. Photo: Panos Davios. © ATOPOS collection

Don’t miss the chance to travel back in time to the 1960s as you walk though this extraordinary exhibit and learn about the social, cultural, and historical significance of a piece of clothing that represented pop art to political campaigns. On display now at the Barbican International Enterprise in London.

The Art of the Brick

The Art of the Brick, www.amsterdamexpo.nl, Foto: Carolien Sikkenk

The Art of the Brick, www.amsterdamexpo.nl, Foto: Carolien Sikkenk


The Amsterdam EXPO is featuring an incredible exhibit with over 70 hand made sculptures and statues. You will be in awe after finding out that every piece of art is made entirely out of LEGOs. Artist Nathan Sawaya uses his imagination and creativity to transform a simple kid’s toy into unbelievable works of art.
The Art of the Brick, www.amsterdamexpo.nl, Foto: Carolien Sikkenk

The Art of the Brick, www.amsterdamexpo.nl, Foto: Carolien Sikkenk


The Art of the Brick, www.amsterdamexpo.nl, Foto: Carolien Sikkenk

The Art of the Brick, www.amsterdamexpo.nl, Foto: Carolien Sikkenk


Explaining why he chose LEGOs, Nathan Sawaya says:
I use LEGO bricks as my medium because I enjoy seeing people’s reactions to artwork created from something with which they are familiar. Everyone can relate to it since it is a toy that many children have at home

Included in the exhibit is a T-Rex skeleton measuring over six meters in length and contains over 80,000 LEGO bricks.

The Art of the Brick, www.amsterdamexpo.nl, Foto: Carolien Sikkenk

The Art of the Brick, www.amsterdamexpo.nl, Foto: Carolien Sikkenk


Also featured are recreations of famous artworks such as Da Vinci´s Mona Lisa and Venus de Milo.

The Art of the Brick, www.amsterdamexpo.nl, Foto: Carolien Sikkenk

The Art of the Brick, www.amsterdamexpo.nl, Foto: Carolien Sikkenk


The Art of the Brick, www.amsterdamexpo.nl, Foto: Carolien Sikkenk

The Art of the Brick, www.amsterdamexpo.nl, Foto: Carolien Sikkenk


If inspiration comes to you walking through the exhibit there is an area where you can use your creativity to sculpt something yourself!

Named in CNN´s top 10 Global must-see exhibitions, this is one you are not going to want to miss! On display now at Amsterdam Expo until September 14th!

Skywalking, the latest photo trend

Taking photography to a new dimension, skywalking is the latest craze that was started by teenagers in Russia and has now spread to other parts of the world. Characterised as another adventure to add to your bucket list, skywalking involves climbing buildings, monuments, or any other tall structure to shoot a one of a kind photograph with an exceptional background. Taking adventure to the next level, most of those who participate climb without the use of any safety equipment.

(Photos by Vadim Mahora / Dedmaxopka)

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One of the first to popularize this latest fad was Vadim Mahora, who along with his team climbed to jaw-dropping heights to take breathtaking photography of Europe’s most famous attractions from a perspective never seen before. Although the photos are incredible, we would recommend not trying it at home!

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Insider: Joseph Ford

There are some photographers who enjoy shooting fashion and others who appreciate shooting landscapes. British photographer, Joseph Ford, is famous for creating outstanding photography by merging both together into one. So far he has shot on location, in studio, from helicopters, boats and cranes, underwater and up mountains.

Just recently Joseph Ford collaborated with us in a photo series that combined Pepe Jeans items with classic London landmarks. We were able to get the inside scoop on this project and more! Check it out for yourself below:

1. What made you want to become a photographer?

Discovering the work of Bill Brandt.

2. Where does your inspiration come from?

A huge number of daily influences: art, cinema, the natural world, patterns and situations I come across by chance.

© Joseph Ford

© Joseph Ford

3. How did you come up with the idea to take aerial photos and combine them with garments?

I’ve always been fascinated by the patterns and shapes one sees from the air. The way buildings and natural scenes take on a different perspective when seen from above made me think about the way they could be linked to clothing.

© Joseph Ford

© Joseph Ford

© Joseph Ford

© Joseph Ford

4. What do you enjoy most about being a photographer?

Doing new things all the time.

5. What would be your dream photo shoot?

Something completely different. Maybe a fashion shoot inside an ice cave or on a glacier.

© Joseph Ford

© Joseph Ford

6. What has been your biggest struggle when taking photos?

Choosing which ideas to pursue and having to accept that there isn’t time to do everything I think of.

7. How did you decide on the photos and clothing garments to use together in the Pepe Jeans London photo shoot?

I spent a long time planning which areas to shoot from the helicopter, based on the patterns I saw in the garments. Once I had the aerial pictures, I explored the matching possibilities to test which elements would combine in the most interesting fashion.

1. Pepe Jeans Joseph Ford - Piccadilly Circus

© Joseph Ford for Pepe Jeans

© Joseph Ford for Pepe Jeans

© Joseph Ford for Pepe Jeans

8. Any exciting project?

A trip to Hawaii this autumn, photographing volcanoes amongst other things!

© Joseph Ford

© Joseph Ford

Check out his website, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram,

Insider: Francisco Lalanne

Some weeks ago we were telling you about Atelier des Jeunes, an artistic project born in Spain, in which selected spanish artists showcase their works. The artists of Atelier des Jeunes have a personal and nontransferable look about everything that surrounds them or about their deep personal worlds. Each of the few names that integrate this platform, in a few years, may be part of what we call Spanish contemporary art. With a promising future, these young men and women put their works at disposal of the public with the support of this new online platform. We’ve had the pleasure to chat with one of its founders: Francisco Lalanne.

1. How did the idea of Atelier des Jeunes come about and what is its aim? 

The project arose from the crisis. We and Patricio Binaghi saw a lot of young talent being scattered all over, leaving Spain to look for opportunities in other countries. That gave us the initial kick start, since the purpose of the site is to provide a space for young artists, a place where they can showcase their work and offer the public quality contemporary art at an affordable price.

"9" by Aledeariza: http://www.atelierdesjeunes.com/en/artista/aledeariza

“9″ by Aledeariza: http://www.atelierdesjeunes.com/en/artista/aledeariza

2. How do you select the Jeunes artists?

The site has different sections. Patricio Binaghi, cofounder of the site, is responsible for the curation in all of them apart from the “Curated by” section, where it is handled by someone outside the project. To find the artists we do some research on social networks, visit exhibitions, look at the portfolios we receive from people who want to participate, etc. Then, in our main section, “Artistas Jeunes” (Young Artists), the works submitted by the selected artists are voted on by a jury formed of artist Juan Gatti, independent critic and curator Iván López Munuera, editor Luis Venegas, deputy director of AD España Enric Pastor, and Spanish correspondent for Monocle magazine, Liam Aldous,who select the works offered for sale on the site.

Retrato Militar: Bakea (http://www.atelierdesjeunes.com/en/artista/bakea)

“Retrato Militar” by Bakea: http://www.atelierdesjeunes.com/en/artista/bakea)

3. Tell us about a moment when you laughed and a moment when you cried during the Atelier des Jeunes project

There’s a lot of both. Setting up a project today is very complicated, not only because you have to take care of absolutely everything but also because government policies don’t encourage people to invest in Spain, or in entrepreneurs in general; so this makes the path difficult and often you just want to cry. Later, when the hard work starts to bear fruit, these are moments of great joy, where your work is recognised, and you can look back on the tough times and smile.

"Niña" by Antonio Uve: http://www.atelierdesjeunes.com/en/artista/antonio-uve

“Niña” by Antonio Uve: http://www.atelierdesjeunes.com/en/artista/antonio-uve

4. What’s your favourite Atelier des Jeunes artwork?

I can’t say really, basically I like all of them; because even if I’m not responsible for the curating, I have my own opinions and, luckily, Pato consults me. Obviously there are some works that I prefer more than others, but generally I like everything that’s on there. I think it’s a great site, and we currently have around 200 high-quality works from some fine artists.

"Amor" by Mágoz: http://www.atelierdesjeunes.com/en/artista/magoz

“Amor” by Mágoz: http://www.atelierdesjeunes.com/en/artista/magoz

5. What does art mean to Francisco Lalanne?

A tricky question, but I believe it’s about the union between the artist and the public through his or her work. The artist creates something, with his or her own meaning, and the public contemplates it and lends it their own meaning, which may or may not coincide, but this union is art for me.

"Su Santidad" by Tiscar Espadas: http://www.atelierdesjeunes.com/en/artista/tiscar-espadas

“Su Santidad” by Tiscar Espadas: http://www.atelierdesjeunes.com/en/artista/tiscar-espadas

6. What advice would you give to young artists trying to break through?

First of all, to not give up if the road is hard. And I also think it’s important that they use PR and marketing tools, as simple tools like these can help them publicise themselves.

7. Where is the project headed?

Well, at the moment we’re working with some brands, as is the case with Pepe Jeans. In April we’re launching our second edition of artistas jeunes and in October we’ll have the third. The project is poised to become a hotbed of young Spanish talent. Our idea is to generate opportunities and to provide a showcase for young artists in the country.

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Insiders: Valentin Fischer

For our latest edition of Insiders we had the pleasure of chatting with Valentin Fischer, Stuttgart-based illustrator. He has worked in a number of capacities as a freelance illustrator and designer and his works are out of this world. Don’t miss the interview below and judge for yourselves!

1. Who gave you the best piece of advice? What was it?

“Be honest to yourself.“ Maybe this sounds silly, but it’s not always easy to do so. In the end you are happier and more satisfied with life if you’re not doing something you think you should do. Instead do something you are really happy with.

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2. Who or what inspires your illustrations?

Life, of course. Other contemporary artists like James Jean, Joao Ruas and Erik Jones. But old masters like Caravaggio and Bouguereau as well.

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3. List 3 things you couldn’t live without.

Pencil

Music

Friends

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4. How did you become an illustrator? Was it something you had planned out or it happened by chance?

I wasn’t the guy who drew and paint his whole life. Of course I did some scribbles as a kid, but I started to draw and paint regularly around the age of 17. But I also was interested to become a designer. Since there are not that many schools in Germany where you can study illustration (at this time only one on the other side of the country). I did a masters in “Communication, Planning and Design”. During my time at university I kept doing my art and illustrations and did some jobs here and there. Now I work as a freelance designer and illustrator.

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5. What do you like the most about your job? And about living in Stuttgart?

To make a living out of doing what you love is probably the best thing to achieve in life. At least for me.

Honestly, I guess Stuttgart is not the best place to live as a designer/artist/illustrator. But it’s the place where I do have my network. On top of that, almost all of my closest friends are living in this city, I couldn’t ask for more. Maybe I’ll move to an other place sometime, but I’m sure I’ll always come back.

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6. Finally, if you could partner up with a blogger, artist or publication, which one would it be? Why?

I’am a huge movie fan, so I would love to do a poster for www.mondotees.com. That would be a dream job.

 

You can check out more of Valentin’s work over at:

Blog: Valentin Fischer 

Facebook: Valentin Fischer

Website: Valentin Fischer

 

The finest examples of street art

A few weeks ago we told you about an alternative route in London which allows you discover the best street art the city has to offer. Street art has been taking many cities around the world by storm for many years now. Instead of daubing the streets with meaningless signatures or drawings, which only make cities look rundown, why not decorate the streets with real art?

Below we show you the cream of the crop, street art which has added a touch of colour and non-conformity to many cities worldwide.

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The ordinary objects exhibition

A museum, by definition, is an institution devoted to the exhibition of artistic or scientific objects, but what if there were a space dedicated to ordinary things? Art is not only about paintings and sculptures, design is art too. That’s why the exhibition Extraordinary Stories About Ordinary Things presents a selection of the key designs of everyday objects that have marked the history of modern man.

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Design Museum Collection – © Luke Hayes

Design Museum Collection -  © Luke Hayes

Design Museum Collection – © Luke Hayes

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Design Museum Collection – © Luke Hayes

How can a red telephone box become a symbol of a nation? Through its selection of emblematic items the Design Museum traces the history of contemporary British design, contextualizing each piece and reflecting on the reason for its existence in people’s everyday space.

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Design Museum Collection – © Luke Hayes

Design Museum Collection -  © Luke Hayes

Design Museum Collection – © Luke Hayes

In each of the exhibition’s six sections, Taste, Why We Collect, Identity + Design, Icons, Fashion and Material + Process, there is a common element that unites them and makes them part of history. For example, in Material + Process there is a part dedicated to plastic and to why objects such as Jonathan Ive’s iMac owe their existence to this material.

Design Museum Collection - 29.01.13 - Max Colson-18

Design Museum Collection – © Max Colson

Design Museum Collection -  © Max Colson

Design Museum Collection – © Max Colson

Design Museum Collection -  © Luke Hayes

Design Museum Collection – © Luke Hayes

The exhibition will be on display at the Design Museum in London until 2015. However, it won’t always be the same since some of the pieces will change depending on the month. If you don’t have the opportunity to go in person, you can still enjoy the exhibition on your tablet. 

Insiders > Valeria Ustarez

A lot of people like photography but not everyone knows how to take photos that really touch the heart of the viewer. Valeria Ustarez has this talent. With the two things she loves the most, music and photography, she wants to make her living. She has the ability to look beyond what initially meets the eye and to capture the essence of her surroundings, capturing their beauty. We talked to her to find out how she sees the world through her lens and here’s what she told us:

1. How did you know that photography was your thing?

When I was taught how to use a camera, I liked to take it everywhere with me and photograph everything I saw. Then I became interested in music photography, and I was good at it, and I started going to concerts specifically to take pictures and to capture the music.

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2. What do you love most about photography?

I love the fact that my photographs are memories that I’ve experienced and that I’ve decided how to take photos so that I will remember them all my life.

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3. Which of your photographs is your favourite?

It would have to be the photograph I took at a Miles Kane concert, where I caught him in a moment of ecstasy playing a solo.

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4. What inspires you when you’re out taking photos?

The location and music in particular. If the place is suitable for taking photos, then it inspires me to play with the light and with black and white. I like taking photos on the street, there’s always something interesting to capture.

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5. Which photographic work has satisfied you the most?

Definitely my work in Hard Rock Rising in Mallorca, a battle of local bands where the winner participated in a competition with bands from around the world. I met some great musicians through this job and the Hard Rock Cafe staff treated me really well, I felt really comfortable.

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6. You’ve worked with Cirque du Soleil. How was that experience? Have you worked for other brands or companies?

Yes, I did an illustrated feature for Live Nation on Cirque du Soleil’s ‘Alegría’ show. They explained how the artists organise themselves and rehearse for the show. I really enjoyed it; I’ve always loved the circus.

I’d like to show you some photos but can’t because of the issue of confidentiality…

I worked with the Hard Rock Café Mallorca, doing illustrated features of the concerts held there, and in the end they put together a fanzine which included the best moments of each band, mainly the competition winner.

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7. If you were the one being photographed, who would you like the photographer to be?

I love taking photos, but I have problems when it’s me being photographed. I’m a shy person, but I wouldn’t mind being a model for Man Ray or appearing in a Robert Doisneau photograph without knowing I’ve been photographed.

8. What project are you undertaking at the moment?

My photography project entitled “Nights of sound”, which portrays various musicians that I’ve met. I started in Mallorca and I’m still completing a series of photographs in Barcelona.

9. Have you any project in mind for the future?

I’d like to stick with artistic photography, and also to experiment in order to learn new techniques and to improve my work. I’m very self-critical and I want to become a real rock photographer.

10. If you could photograph any thing or any person, what or who would it be?

I’d like to go to an Elvis Presley concert, take a portrait of him, and tell him how much he has contributed to the world with his music.

Check out Valeria’s work: Cargo Collective , Hard Rock Rising fanzine