When a writer creates his medium is rather straightforward. The finished product may may be a movie or a graphic novel or even a radio play, but the starting point is always a blank page. Artists, on the other hand, have much more freedom to create and their medium is virtually anything. Performance artists use their own bodies in the execution of art, sculptors use any manner of materials, and musicians can make music from the sounds found in everyday life. The freedom available is amazing.
I wanted to share a couple of artists that caught my eye with the way they used common mediums to create uncommon pieces of art. One works in video games and the other in music, but both their portfolios display an intense level of creativity combined with a constant need to push boundaries.
Paul Robertson is a pixel artist who has worked on some great properties like Scott Pilgrim vs. The World: The Game and Gravity Falls. I first came across his art when I saw Pirate Baby’s Cabana Battle Street Fight 2006. Yeah, it’s a mouthful. This was Robertson’s attempt at creating the side-scrolling fighting game he always wanted to play. It’s hyper-violent, extremely tongue in cheek, and filled with an insane number of references. I was immediately hooked. His art style isn’t for everyone due to its occasional NSFW nature and weird melding of images, but his raw creativity is apparent in everything he produces.
What inspires me about his work is that he released it into the wilds of the internet completely free and without DRM. He even provided multiple locations where you can download the films. This was done before it became vogue for musicians to do the same thing. The last full length animation he created was Kings of Power Four Billion %. It’s even more hyper-violent than Pirate Baby and also has NSWF elements, so be careful where you click play on this one.
Make The City Sound Better was a project put together by headphone manufacturers AIAIAI and sound artist Yuri Suzuki. Using a heavily modified—and incredibly awesome—black cab they recorded the ambient noise of London and turned it into a soothing score for the city which was then projected through the 67 speakers installed onto the cab’s exterior.
People tend to drown out city noise through their iPods or smartphones and create audio “blinders” to the world around them. This project transformed what is typically an ignored component of urban living into an engaging experience. It pulled the citizens of London out of their usual routine and gave them a moment of unexpected art. I love this concept and wonder if they are considering it for other cities as well. Comparing the sonic footprint of major metropolitans would be a great extension to this already unique project.
Here’s a behind the scenes teaser about the project.
Here’s one of the tracks created while driving around London.
Where have you unexpectedly found incredible art? Let us know in the comments or shoot me a tweet @gabrielnovo. If you enjoy these articles then feel free to have them delivered directly to your inbox or share them with a friend using the buttons below.