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    Bookshelf: The Layzell Bros.

Bookshelf

Bookshelf: A suitably hilarious, collaborative Bookshelf from the marvellous Layzell Bros

Posted by Liv Siddall,

Could you get a much cooler scenario than two young brothers getting their brains together to melt down years of eating sugary cereal in front of cartoons as kids into an actual career involving animating videos for Adam Buxton and making gloriously juvenile illustrations? I can’t. Paul and Matt Layzell have been blowing our minds with their hilarious videos and drawings for a few years now, so we were curious to see which books inspired them to become the fine young men they are today. With minimal squabbling they have chosen six books, and boy are you in for a treat…

Kazuo Umezu: Cat Eyed Boy Volume 1

We love us some horror manga and good old Kazuo’s creation is a classic. The contorted, slimy imagination of some of these Japanese manga guys just gets our brains ticking. Junji Ito is another twisted sister in the mist of Manga misters.
Kazuo Umezu: Cat Eyed Boy

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    Kazuo Umezu: Cat Eyed Boy Volume 1

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    Kazuo Umezu: Cat Eyed Boy Volume 1

Man After Man- Dougal Dixon

This guy’s vision of the future is fubble-duckin’ crazy but oh-hoh-ho, it is a glorious one. What will there be in the future kids? Hover car highways? Virtual reality worlds? DON’T BE STUPID! We’ll all revert back to being monkeys, some of us will be big whale things in jelly eggs and some will be fat tumorous mutants, then slave horses. The drawings make it seem real.
Dougal Dixon: Man After Man: A Zoology of the Future

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    Man After Man- Dougal Dixon

Stan Lee, John Buscema: How To Draw Comics The Marvel Way

Whilst locked up in the cellar as kids, as mother sharpened the knives, we learned how to draw by studying comic books (mostly of the Marvel brand). Without them we’d still be attempting to draw a set of realistic boobs, clasping the pencil with both hands, shaking, sweating profusely, cursing under our breath. Thanks Stan, you beautiful old man, EXCELSIOR!
Stan Lee, John Buscema: How to Draw Comics the “Marvel” Way

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    Stan Lee, John Buscema: How To Draw Comics The Marvel Way

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    Stan Lee, John Buscema: How To Draw Comics The Marvel Way

Jeffrey Deitch, Suzanne Geiss, Julia Gruen: Keith Haring

This is a must-have for any artist, its heft alone is impressive, and you know what they say about a man with a big book! He’s got a big sack!… to put his big book back in… the bag/sack. The dude had steez with a capital Z. Pumping out hit after hit, just pumping, pumping, forever pumping.
Jeffrey Deitch: Keith Haring

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    Jeffrey Deitch, Suzanne Geiss, Julia Gruen: Keith Haring

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    Jeffrey Deitch, Suzanne Geiss, Julia Gruen: Keith Haring

Paul Dini, Chip Kidd: Batman Animated

We loved watching this series whilst growing up into our tall, awkward bodies. It’s one of those subconscious influences that maybe you can’t see in our work but oh my Gaaad, honey, you better believe, it – is-a-there. The quality design that went into this cartoon definitely serves as a mark for us to shoot for. The best version of Batman, Noluns wuz SHIT!
Paul Dini: Batman Animated

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    Paul Dini, Chip Kidd: Batman Animated

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    Paul Dini, Chip Kidd: Batman Animated

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Posted by Liv Siddall

Liv joined It’s Nice That as an intern in 2011 and is now one of our editors. She oversees itsnicethat.com and has a particular interest in illustration, photography and music videos. She is also a regular guest and sometime host on our Studio Audience podcast.

Most Recent: Bookshelf View Archive

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    Last week Clive Martin from Vice called him “the David Bailey of grime” which sums up Ewen Spencer’s oeuvre beautifully, really. The documentary photographer has made British youth and subculture his bread and butter, photographing the UK garage scene in all of its gritty glory as well as working for the NME, photographing The White Stripes, making the very brilliant Brandy & Coke and producing a host of books and exhibitions as well. As far as perspectives on Britishness go, Ewen’s is basically unrivalled.

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    Yesterday marked the launch of the brand new issue of bi-annual hardback Twin magazine, the defiantly substantial glossy publication that clubs fashion, art and culture together through interviews and gorgeous imagery. This issue includes photographs by Petra Collins, an archive of childhood shots of Kate Bush taken by her older brother and an interview with the remarkable Neneh Cherry, so to celebrate we thought we’d have founder Becky Smith show us the five books which have inspired and influenced her. In the process, we learned who her favourite photographers are, whose rare books she’s lucky to have laid her hands on and the unlikely inspiration behind the name “Twin”. Read on!

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    When we get in touch with the people whose work we admire to ask if they’d like to be involved in the Bookshelf feature, we ask them to pick books which have been particularly inspiring or influential to them in their lives, and this brief might never been more closely followed than by Jessica Svendsen. Jessica is a graphic designer at Pentagram and teaches Typography at both Parsons and Pratt in New York, as well as working on a number of freelance projects which are as remarkable for the degree of research which informs them as for their bold, impactful imagery.

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    Longtime fans of Toro Y Moi will already know Chaz Bundick to be a man with impeccable visual stylings, and a portfolio which stretches way beyond logos and album covers to include album launches turned art exhibitions, screen-printed posters and a heavy involvement with the concepts behind his music videos as well. Today marks the launch of Chaz’s debut album Michael under the name of his dancier side project Les Sins, which we decided made for an ample excuse to get a look at his Bookshelf. And my god it’s a good one.

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    Where some printed publications shy away from British culture as it exists beyond Union Jack flags and Yorkshire tea in floral china, LAW Magazine, which stands for Lives and Works is already knee-deep in the grit and the grime. Now in its fifth issue, the staple-bound bi-annual describes itself as a platform for “the beautiful everyday… A window into the world of the current undercurrent that nobody is catching and which is therefore of greater importance to document.” It’s a kind of Britishness so ubiquitous that you’d have to be wandering the streets with your head in a bag to miss it – one defined by full-suspension mountain bikes, Sunday League referees, Hackney estate maps and Vauxhall Novas.

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    Having founded London-based design studio Build in 2001, creative director Michael C. Place has amassed his fair share of books in his time, with a healthy combination of design knowledge to be found tucked between the spines on the studios (admirably well-organised) shelf. We’ve been championing Build’s work on the site for some time now, so what better way to get an insight into the inspirations behind their snazzy work than by hearing from the creative director himself about his favourite reading material? Between Letraset catalogues, reflections on legend Wim Crouwel and Michael’s mate Blam (who has excellent taste in books) we were not disappointed.

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    “In February 2013, 18 weeks pregnant, I was diagnosed with bowel cancer.” That’s the opening statement on the website of graphic novelist Matilda Tristram, who channeled this painful chapter of her life into a bestselling comic entitled Probably Nothing. We interviewed Matilda a while back on the site and were so intrigued by her story, we had to know more. In this revealing, insightful Bookshelf, Matilda shows us the fantastic books that have inspired her to be one of the most important and engaging graphic novelists working today. Here she is…

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    Yay! Hato Press! We love them. A lot. Neighbours of ours, Hato have spent the last five years collaborating with some of the coolest young creatives and oldest institutions to create impeccably beautiful printed matter and design solutions. A number of the publications these guys have produced are some of the most beautiful I’ve ever had the pleasure of holding/smelling, and it seems that every single thing they do or work on is covered in a glimmering magic dust that is exclusive to only them. Before you go and wet your pants over their multi-disciplinary work on their very nice websites (here and here) check out the books that have inspired them over the years below. Enjoy!

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    Satirical artist and very funny woman Miriam Elia is something of a pro when it comes to books; last year she self-published We Go to the Gallery, a satirical reinterpretation of a 1960s Ladybird book which seeks to help parents explain sex, death and contemporary art to their young ones, complete with a handy glossary of new words to learn. She’s since co-curated an exhibition about Pastiche, Parody and Piracy at London’s Cob Gallery, while other past works include I Fell in Love With a Conceptual Artist… and It Was TOTALLY MEANINGLESS about her relationship with Martin Creed. Hilarious? Yes. Yes it is. Miriam’s Bookshelf includes lovingly weathered books about typography, photography, flesh-eating plants and Butlins holiday camps, giving a neat insight into her brain.

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    John Tebbs is an English gardener who, frustrated by the fact that “many of his working days are held hostage to the weather” founded The Garden Edit in the winter of 2013. His idea was to spend his downtime as productively as possible, creating an online store of beautiful objects which he sourced and sold himself. The resulting curated collection reflects John’s faultless aesthetic, selling “minimal, well-designed products from craftspeople, artists, publishing houses and family-run businesses” alongside a Journal which features short articles by some of his favourite figures about their own horticultural escapades, from rooftop gardens to illustrations of plants.

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    Want to know a surprising secret about self-proclaimed “book obsessive” and Dazed & Confused editor Isabella Burley? She can’t stand big coffee-table-sized fashion books. “I’ve always taken my references from art, pop culture, photography and sex zines rather than fashion,” she told us. “That’s really come to shape the way I approach our fashion content within Dazed.”

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    With 25 years experience in magazine design, not to mention eight years of covering the extensive subject under the title magCulture, it’s a wonder we haven’t already metaphorically burst into Jeremy Leslie’s house and insisted he share his five favourite examples of printed matter right then and there. Instead, we caught him in the build up to The Modern Magazine 2014, the conference which takes place annually in the midst of London Design Festival to shine a torch on the current state of editorial creativity, as well as new directions for the industry.

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    Danielle Pender is the brain at the helm of Riposte magazine, one of the most exciting new publications created to champion the women doing exciting work in the creative industries today, as well as working at KK Outlet, the London outpost of communications agency KesselsKramer, so can you blame us for wanting to have a poke about her bookshelf? Her selection gives a generous insight into the process behind putting together a magazine, from the issue of National Geographic which led her and Riposte’s creative director Shaz Madani to consider a text-based front cover for the magazine (“I’m really happy we had the balls to go with it”) and the all-time hero she dreams of interviewing, with a few other gems thrown in for good measure. She technically stretched her five books to seven, but we let her off because they’re all so damn interesting.