Article
32 comments

Benton Park Prints Giveaway

Benton Park Prints AND The Walkup Giveaway

Being the Manhattan-centric, metropolitan girl that I am, when people say “the big city,” I always assume that they mean New York. But, alas, when in Missouri, the big city is St. Louis! Benton Park is a neighborhood in St. Louis and also happens to be home to Daniel Jones, graphic design and owner of Benton Park Prints. St. Louis is home to 7-Up, ice cream cones, iced tea, the Gateway Arch, the Delmar Loop, toasted raviolis and microbrews. See a pattern? The city seems quite proud of its food – Americans there consume more BBQ sauce per capita than anywhere else. How apropos then, that many of Benton Park Print’s creations would do well in your kitchen.

Benton Park Prints

Walkup Spacer Line

Daniel is inspired by random things all around him – he keeps an ongoing list in his iPhone of moments in his day that could be useful as a new print – there are hundreds of unfinished ideas.  The shop began when most of his jobs were for corporate websites and he felt that he was missing out on creativity. He explains, “Many of the early prints were thought up when I was driving a car to meet with clients.”

He tries to make prints that make people happy and get a little laugh.

Benton Park Prints

Get the family excited for breakfast with highly visual, simplistic morning choices. The shop carries modern takes on wafflesbacon, eggs, pancakes, coffee and more. Give your kitchen a nook straight from a fifties diner! 

Daniel always wants a print to look good in charcoal on a white background. If it does not look good in a basic state, than he believes it will not look good in any color. His framing advice is always to give prints a big matted area with at least two inches of molding.  He comically clarifies, “I like my prints looking like a tiny person laying in the middle of a king sized bed with white sheets.  The print needs to look comfy in its surroundings to draw a person in when looking at it.  It also helps the print, or message, pop when in this state.”
Benton Park Prints
I Am The Walrus. This Beatles inspired 8″x10″ would look great next to any record player or in any music room.
Article
0 comment

Mixology (9)

Tree: The iconic Joshua tree, the namesake of the California park, is actually a member of the lily family. Legend says that Mormon travelers named the tree after the biblical figure of Joshua. Image found HERE. / Room: Home of Maurizio Zucchi, from Ideat Magazine, June 2011. Image found HERE.

Tree: Lavender Twist Weeping Redbud (Cercis canadensis ‘Covey’). Image found HERE. / Room: Purple floral living room Oversized floral wallpaper can be teamed with simple, solid, and bold accents to create a balance. Mirror – Tesco Direct. Armchair – Sofa Workshop. Photograph by Dominic Blackmore. Image found HERE.

Tree: Meyer Lemon Tree (and recipes to use its fruits), found at Happelsauce, HERE. / Room: Amy Lau Design, Beach House Bridgehampton. An airy, midcentury, natural, citrusy, living room. Image found HERE.

 

Tree: ‘October Glory’ maple is a hybrid between the Red maple (Acer rubrum) and the Silver maple (Acer saccharinum). It is not as brittle as the silver maple, but has the rapid growth of the silver maple. Fall color rivals that of the red maple. The tree and image found via Lynn’s Garden in Arkansas, HERE.  / Room: Elegant Pre-war 2 bedroom apartment in boutique full service cooperative on a lovely tree-lined street.  170 East 78th Street #5F on Upper East Side, NYC. It can be yours for ONLY $1.25 million. Image found, HERE.

P.S. What are you doing for earth day this year? Any special traditions or recycling and water usage promises?

Article
3 comments

Bugging Out

Entomology (from Greek ἔντομος, entomos, “that which is cut in pieces or engraved/segmented”, and -λογία, -logia) is the scientific study of insects. Insects account for more than two-thirds (2/3’s) of all known organisms on the earth. The study of insects is a form of biology, ecology,  arthropodology, specifically in zoology. That’s a lot of “ologies”. The scientific study of insects is thought to have begun around the 16th century – which accounts for the first century of the Renaissance.  As Albrecht Dürer (1471-1528) wrote, “It is indeed true that art is omnipresent in nature, and the true artist is he who can bring it out.”

Christopher Marley, The Coleoptera Mosaics, each piece is signed and labeled and no two are exactly alike.

Whether we are discussing beetles (25% of all known lifeforms are in this order), bees, moths, butterflies, ants, grasshoppers, or candidas, it should be noted that most of the bugs’  exoskeletons are gorgeous. Bugs usually rely on the defense mechanism of camouflage so as not to be eaten or seen. This mechanism (through the course of evolution) has allowed bugs to have colors as variegated as tree moss, tropical birds, succulents, desert flowers, and rainforest bark. Historically, several species of bugs have been incorporated into ritual objects because of tribal religious significance. In Mexico, live beetle brooches (don’t be squeamish!) are a growing trend. Several living artists have reinvented the idea of scientific insect study and raised the pinning and conservation of insects as an art form.

Christopher Marley, “Lumens Prism”, Via.

A gallery wall featuring several Christopher Marley creations, for purchase go HERE. 

Framed insects via The Evolution Store in Soho, NY. 

Steven Kutcher works with animals far too small to hold any paintbrush!  He treats insects as living (and thus, moving) brushes in order to create his canvases. Kutcher’s bug art concept grew out of his work as an insect wrangler for Hollywood films, including “Arachnophobia” and “Spider-Man.” The inspiration came on a Hollywood set in 1985, while working on the Steven Spielberg television project “Amazing Stories.” He explains, “I’ll take a bug in my hand and, leg by leg, [and] load the paint onto each leg.”  This concept of letting animals roam free on a surface creates his “masterpieces” – sometimes with sup rising patterns and results! No insects were harmed in the making of his paintings!

Via.

 Steven Kutcher, Starry Night, Hissing Cockroach (Gromphadorhina portentosa), with Gouache on Paper, 18 x 24 in., 2004.

Sunrise No. 1., Darkling Beetle (Eleodes sp.), With Gouache on Paper, 18 x 24 in., 2004.

Bug stationery!   102. Earth Nova, by Darkling Beetle; 103. Butterflies in the Garden No. 1,by Darkling Beetle; 70. Olympic, by Darkling Beetle;  (front row, left to right). 93. Fireworks in the Forest by Darkling Beetle; Making Tracks*byDarkling Beetle; 74. Dancing Beetle LL (Lower Left, part of a series of four paintings), by Darkling Beetle.

Bug art prints as decor, image from DesignSponge, HERE.

Bug Under Glass is an amazing online retailer that features several styles of bugs, prints, dioramas, and insects on maps! Check it out, HERE.

As a teen, Christopher Marley spent 2 years in the Atacama Desert of northern Chile. As a professional photographer his assignments sent him to dozens of countries in Asia, Europe, Africa and the Americas. All he saw and photographed generated a desire to produce a work that would share the awesome variety of insects world-wide. Besides insects, he also has designed items with fossils, minerals, botanicals, bones, and sea life.  If ACTUAL bugs on the wall are not your cup-of-tea, feel free to purchase this gorgeous coffee table book instead.

Or you can invest in bug prints, without using the actual insect bodies. Either way – the colors and shapes are inspiring!

Barton Lidice Benes, Bug, 2009, Mixed-media on paper , 16 x 14 inches, found HERE.