Research point - detail drawings

"Choose 2 artists who exemplify detailed work"

One of my favourite artists at the moment is Mattias Adolfsson.

Mattias is a Swedish artist, who has a Masters of fine arts in Graphic Design. After leaving school he went into animation for music videos and film, then onto making computer games. He starting drawing again in 2006, when he created a sketch blog, which has since become one of the most visited sketchbooks in the world, and has lead to work as a freelance illustrator.

His work is mainly ink and watercolours within small Moleskin sketchbooks. His drawings feature lots of imaginary creatures and animals, with lots of humour and sci-fi elements.

I really enjoy his work, as each tiny image is full of incredible detail, meaning you can see the same image a hundred times and still spot something different every time. His style is very simple, using black lines and a bit of cross hatching, then simple use of watercolour, yet his images are extremely accurate. However, I think what I love most about his work is his imagination... I read somewhere that he sometimes just picks up his pen and starts drawing and see's what develops, I continue to be in awe that images like that can be created with no planning!


I have found it much harder to find a 19th century artist who's work I enjoy, so I have instead looked into illustrators / biologists from the time.

I have several books (Artforms of Nature) of the work of Ernst Haeckel, a biologist, illustrator and author of natural history. He discovered, documented and named thousands of new species and his incredible work Kunstformen der Natur (Artforms of Nature) includes over 100 exceptionally detailed lithographs of a wide variety of organisms.

I love his work, as again it is very simple ink and a coloured wash, yet extremely detailed. Although the illustrations were made to serve a purpose of identification they are truly beautiful and very modern in their style. I love the way that although each page in his book is a collection of creatures, they wouldn't look out of place as modern patterns on wallpaper or fabric. In fact, whilst writing this and researching images, I have recognised an image by Hoyle (simular style to Haeckel) which has been recently used for a fabric pink by Tula Pink.


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