June, you miserable swine, you’ve brought us nothing but grim, rainy mornings interspersed with the occasional suggestion of summery climes to follow. You’ve given with one hand and then taken away with both. You’ve left us bereft of hope and yearning for some kind of beachy holiday that will allow us to forget our miserable country and its pathetic excuse for a summer, if only just for a week. You better not be like June, July, or we’ll be pissed off.
Weather aside, you’ve offered us a top selection of energetic young students that we weren’t previously aware of, all making magnificently competent work that would make some of the most seasoned designers and illustrators a bit jittery. So while we’re still pretty peeved about all the ruddy grey mornings June, we’re prepared to forgive you for this healthy crop of youthful talent.
Derek Ercolano – Anti Magazine
Derek is a born and bred New Yorker on temporary relocation to Kunst og designhøgskolen i bergen (KHiB) in Norway. Here he’s pursuing his fascination with illustration and comics on a Masters course in visual communication, following a two-year stint as a commercial art director. His illustrations depict strange mythical characters influenced by Scandinavia’s rich folkloric history. This project in particular, a magazine to promote Norway’s famous black denim brand (run by one of their best creative agencies) Anti. Working with photographer Lars Venner and art director Kamilla Ellingsen, Derek’s added his own take on the trolls of Norway, haunting young girls in the forests of northern Europe. Nice.
Sam Smith – Aquatic Chairs
Sam belongs to a particularly impressive year-group of Kingston graphic design students that look set to take the world by storm. Currently in his second year of study, he’s already tackled a more diverse range of briefs than many of us even contemplated while at university. Alongside straight-up graphic design, Sam’s made films, prints and a selection of hand-made furniture inspired by creatures of the deep. It’s this project that wins him a place on our podium this month but he could quite easily have won with another.
David Doran – Skate en BCN
How David Doran is only in his second year of university is utterly beyond me. The Falmouth illustrator already has his visual language set in stone and his mastery of digital and physical media suggests skills far beyond his years. Illustration, as a rule, is a discipline you build up over long periods of time, through many late nights, but David seems to have arrived fully-formed into his own illustrated world, where the colours are subtle, the perspective exact and the characters and their environments delightfully anachronistic. The brilliance of execution in his Skate en BCN series blows my mind. Give this man another year of study and he’ll be an unstoppable force.
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