Emma Bass -The Modern Classicist -Amazing Botanical Photographs

Emma-Bass, Art, Floral-Design, Flowers, Botanical, Floral, Flower-Arrangement, Photography, Women-Artist, New-Zealand-Artist, Artist, Photographer, Beautiful-Art

 

New Zealand photographer Emma Bass creates bright and modern yet painterly images of flowers in exquisite arrangements. That elusive artistic talent…flawless composition ….returns us over and over to her delightful imagery. Emma’s work has been widely exhibited in New Zealand and may be found in international private and corporate collections and she was the only New Zealander invited to exhibit at the Royal Academy’s 2016 Summer Exhibition, London.

It was such a pleasure to interview the talented artist for the blog, and we hope you enjoy learning more about Emma Bass’s work as much as we did.

 

Emma-Bass, Art, Floral-Design, Flowers, Botanical, Floral, Flower-Arrangement, Photography, Women-Artist, New-Zealand-Artist, Artist, Photographer, Beautiful-Art

 

Tell us a bit about your background? 

I have always seen the world in a compositional way and through a lens. It all started while I was working as a nurse in London during the late 1980s. I did a photography course in Leicester Square and was completely hooked.  I came back to New Zealand where I properly trained for two years and started a career within editorial and commercial photography over a span of 23 years.

I’ve always loved flowers – they are my constant yet ever-changing muse.  As an art photographer who also worked in the milieu of glossy magazines, I became obsessed with finding the ‘perfect’ vessel to team with the ‘perfect’ arrangement. Then one day, a truth dawned. I uncoupled myself from this endless, fruitless search and began to capture reality.  This is when my first body of work Imperfect was formed.

 

Emma-Bass, Art, Floral-Design, Flowers, Botanical, Floral, Flower-Arrangement, Photography, Women-Artist, New-Zealand-Artist, Artist, Photographer, Beautiful-Art

 

I see flowers as one of the most universal forms of beauty. Every culture celebrates them in some way – from the East where they are meditative offerings, to the West, where in the time of the Dutch Masters, they were symbols of wealth and status. They are also tokens of love and a natural expression of the environment. During difficult times, they are a reprieve. Some, like peonies, are impossibly beautiful. But because they bloom and fade so quickly, they are also metaphors of life and death.

 

 

Emma-Bass, Art, Floral-Design, Flowers, Botanical, Floral, Flower-Arrangement, Photography, Women-Artist, New-Zealand-Artist, Artist, Photographer, Beautiful-Art

 

Your process for making your artwork?

In the body of work Imperfect, I found the freedom to no longer peddle perfection. I embraced emerging decay: the maligned, blemished and slightly broken. I paired flowers gathered roadside – including dandelions and cowslip grass – with blooms from friends’ gardens, and displayed them in preloved vases found on eBay. The images were shot not in a studio, but on a stairwell ledge within my home amidst the comforting chaos of family life. I noted the time each image was captured. The decline in the blooms is not obvious or pitiful, but subtle and seductive.  I found the beauty in the imperfect.

 

 

Emma-Bass, Art, Floral-Design, Flowers, Botanical, Floral, Flower-Arrangement, Photography, Women-Artist, New-Zealand-Artist, Artist, Photographer, Beautiful-Art

 

Most inspiring photographer or artist? 

I have a house filled with botanical art, which I’ve collected from New Zealand and further ashore. I like to be surrounded by all flower forms and am interested in how other artists perceive the floral genre.

I love the work of English artist Ann Carrington who makes incredible sculptures of flower arrangements out of English silver cutlery.  Karl Blossfeldt did beautiful botanical studies in the early 1900s, and I love the Dutch Masters, which I’ve found inspirational for my second body of work Embellish.

In 2016, I had a work accepted into the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition in London and while there I visited a Dutch flower still life exhibition at the National Gallery. To see these exquisite masterpieces up close in the flesh was quite a pivotal moment.

 

Emma-Bass, Art, Floral-Design, Flowers, Botanical, Floral, Flower-Arrangement, Photography, Women-Artist, New-Zealand-Artist, Artist, Photographer, Beautiful-Art

 

Favorite historic house or contemporary design? 

I love the era of the 50s, the modernist era.  I live in a 1950s house and love the clean lines, the open spaces, and large windows that fill the house with luminous light.  I would love to own a Frank Lloyd Wright house in my dreams.

 

Hanna Nyman’s Gardens of Paper

flower-art, swan, art, design, paper-art, paper-craft, hanna-nyman, Swedish-art, illustration, contemporary-women-artist, Scandinavian, floral-art, flowers, handmade

Hanna Nyman is a Swedish artist and product designer whose beautifully hand constructed paper works are a world onto themselves, a world of light and gardens overlapped with fanciful patterning.

Hanna began in screen printing on textiles as well as print design and one of her first major paper projects included a magnetic wallpaper with three-dimensional flowers growing out of the pattern, shown at Stockholm Furniture fair. After graduation she worked as a print designer in fashion for several years. Working with paper came naturally to Hanna, her own father was a printer, and the floral themes draw from time spent with her grandmother a florist.  The artist’s ongoing sculptural paper series Back to Poetry was a turning point for her and led to a focus on paper art.  It was pleasure to interview Hanna about her creative story and project!

swan, art, design, paper-art, paper-craft, hanna-nyman, Swedish-art, illustration, contemporary-women-artist, Scandinavian, floral-art, flowers, handmade

Art as poem, poem as art, tell me more about this relationship and way of working?

This idea was actually born at art school when we did our final project for graduation. All the lecturers and professor during the years had described my work as poetic. I never really understood what they meant so I decided to get inspiration from a poem for this last project and figure it out.

This was so powerful to me! The poem that I chose lived with me those month. Every time I read it a found something new about it.

My work is narrative rather than functional. Poetry is also narrative – a feeling.

Tell me a bit about your process, inspiration, conceptualization, experiments, and what types of paper and materials do you use?

I always start my day with a quick look through Instagram and get my dose of inspiration straight away. I get the most energy when I look at artists that work with different materials or have a different style. I also find interior design very inspiring.

I usually get really inspired by the colors and hand feel of the different papers in paper shops. Normally I don’t have a clue of what I will make when I go in there but when I go out my mind is full of ideas.

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I almost never draw any sketch before I start to cut. I have a picture in my head and I just make up as I go along. It’s very liberating and experimental for me to work like this. I use different types of paper. Thick, thin, newspaper. Once I made huge pieces for a client made out of garbage.

This is what’s so amazing with paper. It’s flat and boring at start but if you put some effort into it, it can become something amazing.

bunny, rabbit, collage, paper-collage, love, paper-flowers, flower-art, swan, art, design, paper-art, paper-craft, hanna-nyman, Swedish-art, illustration, contemporary-women-artist, Scandinavian, floral-art, flowers, handmade

Did you make art as a child? Can you tell me more about your training and background?

I made all kind of arts as a child. Mostly I used to paint on stuff and make my own doll houses and small furniture out of cardboard. I was also into wooden crafts in high-school. We had a really nice workshop with all the machines and material plus the best teacher. So I spent most of my time there. After high-school the plan was to keep on study furniture design. But somehow I moved to London and started study fashion design. I moved back home after a year and after a couple of years all I did was make clothes until I realized that it was the decoration that appealed to me, not the clothes themselves.

At this point I started to study at Konstfack. I was accepted as a “special student”, and that meant that I could use the whole school, every department however I wanted. This was perfect for me as I had a background in different materials. When I think about those years i still think this was the most creative place I’ve ever been and it was just wonderful. It was at this time I started to work with paper.

Not many people have seen the flowers and sculptures in real life.

collage, paper-collage, love, paper-flowers, flower-art, swan, art, design, paper-art, paper-craft, hanna-nyman, Swedish-art, illustration, contemporary-women-artist, Scandinavian, floral-art, flowers, handmade

Why florals? Are there specific traditions you refer to in painting, textile art or illustration you find yourself drawn to?

My grandmother was a florist. I remember growing up visiting her at the shop. I sat on the counter and just looked at all the beauty. Maybe that’s why I always been drawn to flowers. When I was working a lot with all-over prints my favorite was always making big colourful florals.

If you would describe your vision and style in a few sentences what would you say?

I use my paper sculptures as illustrations. A big part of the final result is the photography. It gives me the chance to set the tone and feeling to the picture. I like to keep the colours a bit toned down together with black and a splash of a strong color. A dream would of course be so show them somewhere in the future to the public in some way.

collage, paper-collage, love, paper-flowers, flower-art, swan, art, design, paper-art, paper-craft, hanna-nyman, Swedish-art, illustration, contemporary-women-artist, Scandinavian, floral-art, flowers, handmadecollage, paper-collage, love, paper-flowers, flower-art, swan, art, design, paper-art, paper-craft, hanna-nyman, Swedish-art, illustration, contemporary-women-artist, Scandinavian, floral-art, flowers, handmade

ribbons, paper-ribbons, collage, paper-collage, love, paper-flowers, flower-art, swan, art, design, paper-art, paper-craft, hanna-nyman, Swedish-art, illustration, contemporary-women-artist, Scandinavian, floral-art, flowers, handmade

You may learn more about artist and designer Hanna Nyman’s beautifully constructed paper spaces and gardens on her website, shop or via Instagram @backtopoetry

edgy sexy decor: katja’s house

meme design

recently i got to do a really amazing project for a spiritual healer, katja. she has such amazing light, passion and energy but loves mostly black and white for decor. her huge garden provides most of her food, and flowers from this glorious backyard fill the house

Photo by Dmitry Nevlad.jpg

 

ever the sexy archetype, she loves wolves, like i do. i recently helped her rethink her home and this blog is a kind of mood board for her aesthetic and vision….

our discussion began with the idea of spirit animals, and the bad reputation of wolves, and how there is a lot of manga style silliness out there, and paint by numbers looking nonsense pictures of wolves, and very little that really honors the fierce, wild and independent spirit of these animals.

but every once in a while you come across an artist whose depiction of the idea of wildness, of the spirit of the wolf is superbly powerful, sensitive and evocative, like that of the talented photographer katerina plotnikova, her portfolio is so beautiful it can be almost overwhelming, such a rich saturated gothic appeal.

 

K PLOTNIKOVA

 

 

ANA TERESA BARBoza, SPAIN.jpg

 


 

Katja’s House Goes Gray

Our Lookbook | Decor Inspirations

A little modern rustic, add some little gothic, and a touch of romanian mystery and scandinavian white

 

kothea lux fabrics and wallcoverings

 

 

via upcycled treasures

 

Hans Blomquist

 

 

 

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