Article Archive

  1. Chaz-bundick-itsnicethat-list

    We’ve gushed plenty about Toro y Moi’s Chaz Bundick in the past: whether it’s his bookshelf, his orange jumper or the expertly dispersed dry ice in his music videos. Too much is never enough of Chaz, though, and this time around the musician, illustrator, designer and founder of Company Creative has gotten together with site Yours Truly to make a neat little film explaining about how graphics and illustration meet music in his work. From sketching up cool little dog-men to screen-printing them onto T-shirts and all of the other stages that come in-between, the site is featuring Chaz’s polaroids, sketchbooks and photographs all week. It’s a Chaz-fest, and we’re all over it. 

  2. Ramon_haindl_it's_nice_that_list

    “I grew up in the Bavarian countryside so I’m very drawn towards nature and everything that smells of fresh cut grass,” says Ramon Haindl. You get a real sense for this in the rich, earthy hues, dusky light and natural surroundings that tie together the Frankfurt-based photographer’s diverse editorial, commercial and personal portfolios. Everything looks as if it’s been shot in those magic hours as the sun comes up or just before it goes down. No stranger to us here at It’s Nice That, we’ve waxed lyrical about his work from the beginning.

  3. Tom_geraedts_itsnicethat_list

    Tom Geraedts’ film for the Oasis of Matisse exhibition currently on show at the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam is a beautiful tribute to the artist famed for his simple yet powerful cut-outs. It’s incredible how motion designer and director Tom has so seamlessly allowed nature to peel itself apart to reveal bright, tropical colours within; the floating, abstract shapes gliding weightlessly through the gallery past some of Matisse’s most famous works. With a portfolio full of brilliant creative work and clients including BBC World News, M&C Saatchi and ITV, Tom is definitely one to watch out for.

  4. Itsnicethat-weekender-list

    If the Weekender were to contribute to the “lonely hearts” column in a crumpled, thoroughly thumbed tabloid, it would probably read “fun-loving, outgoing, heavily bearded older guy, WLTM likeminded pals for weird GIF exchanges, bad jokes, all-you-can-drink Bloody Mary brunches and all that accompanies them.” If that doesn’t sound like your cup of tea, you’re in the wrong place. Enjoy!

  5. Nude-with-phone-chris-delorenzo-its-nice-that-list

    Usually, I assume that only the most daft, confident or drunk people get tattoos of other people’s illustrations they’ve found on Tumblr. But in the case of “anonymous,” who recently asked graphic artist Christopher Delorenzo if he’d mind if they used one of his drawings to get some ink, I think maybe they’re on to something. Christopher has said that his work is informed by literature and writing: something very much evident in the way each of his simple monochrome drawings manages to convey a rich narrative in black, white and charm. The nudes are stunning – voluptuous and with such a great expression of form – but with a wry eye on the modern world as they clutch an iPhone. Even without much in the way of facial features (just a nose, in some cases), their faces speak a thousand words.

  6. Michael_raisch_jurassic_park_itsnicethat_list

    So many of our beloved movie franchises have been recycled into various remakes, sequels, and prequels. Jurassic Park is no exception with the fourth instalment, Jurassic World currently in a cinema near you. But within the ether of the internet we’ve stumbled across this incredible remake of the original film, videoed 20 years ago by two kids in their basement.

  7. Dreamland-margate-itsnicethat-list

    It’s been a long 11-year slog for the Save Dreamland campaign, but after more than a decade of work and a £30 million regeneration, the UK’s oldest theme park reopens today under the very capable eye of Wayne Hemingway, founder of Hemingway Design. It’s a dream project for the multi-disciplinary designer, who started off selling second-hand Dr Martens boots on a stall at Camden market, as he told us at Here London in 2013. He has since founded fashion house Red or Dead, collaborated with companies including Sainsbury’s and Coca-Cola, and worked on a number of large-scale architectural redevelopments with his wife Gerardine.

  8. Dennis_hopper_drugstore_camera_it's_nice_that_list

    Dennis Hopper is remembered for his achingly cool place in the history of American cinema, most of all his role as a freewheeling biker in Peter Fonda’s psychedelic paean to the wide American road, Easy Rider. He is perhaps lesser known as a documentarian of 60s and 70s culture, but last year an exhibition at the Royal Academy in London brought together over 400 photographs capturing everything and everyone from the streets of Harlem to fellow actor Paul Newman.

  9. Isabel-seiffert-not-the-end-of-print-its-nice-that-list-

    We’re not short on submissions of projects examining whether print is obsolete (SPOILER ALERT! It isn’t), so the work has to be pretty special for us to take notice. That of German designer Isabel Seiffert really stood out, and her book and design for Not the End of Print is considered, accomplished and fully embraces the physical media it endorses. Not only did Isabel design the book, she also carried out the research and penned the text. The gorgeously tactile foils and hand-stamping and well-crafted layout show her dedication to the print cause, and nod to the more sensory appeal of pages over browser windows. While not an original idea by any means, Isabel’s craft and eye make this a piece that stands out and begs to be pored over, analogue style.

  10. Production-type-itsnicethat-list

    Paris-based foundry Production Type seems to be on a self-orchestrated mission to jazz up type specimens. Following on from the neatly put-together booklet demonstrating Proto Grotesk which we posted about not long ago, the foundry is back with more printed goods, and this time around it’s to show off Gemeli Micro.

  11. Josh_haywood_arbour_itsnicethat_list

    With new-build apartments and houses popping up all over the landscape at incredible speed, it’s so interesting to see a project that focuses on true artistry and craft in architecture. Following on from the Hayam Sun Temple Josh Haywood and his team built last year at Burning Man festival in Nevada, the team hopes to construct a new installation titled Arbour.

  12. Jackson-pollock_-number-34-1949-its-nice-that-list

    As one of the most instantly recognisable modern artists and a GCSE art staple, it’s tempting to think there’s little we haven’t seen of Jackson Pollock’s work. A new exhibition at Tate Liverpool, however, proves us wrong. The exhibition, entitled Blind Spots, is the first in more than 30 years to show his late black pouring works. Some we’ll know, many we won’t, but all prove – if proof were needed – what an important, inspirational figure Pollock was. He managed to bring tricky concepts of Abstract Expressionism into the minds of a far wider audience than the art world inner circle, and his works are surely some of the most oft-seen, yet never tiresome artworks of the last century.

  13. Grahan-linehan-itsnicethat-list

    It’s so refreshing and something of a relief when someone as well-respected in their craft as Graham Linehan seems as bemused and befuddled about the creative process as the rest of us. “I find it easier talking about the creative process than doing it – the first stages feel very unlike doing it,” the Father Ted and IT Crowd screenwriter told Rob Alderson at last week’s Here London, the It’s Nice That-curated creative conference. “There’s an early stage where you gather materials, things like stories I find on the internet – like that taxi driver who went on BBC news and got mistaken for an executive for Apple. I could watch that over and over.”

  14. Karlsson-wilker-new-list

    In another rare foray into the world of commercial interior design, we bring you this rather lovely project from Karlssonwilker, which created the designs for a bar in Keflavík International Airport in Iceland. The consultancy created everything from the name to the signage to the menu graphics, and the concept carries through each beautifully. The name Loksins was chosen, meaning “finally” in Icelandic, with the idea that the bar welcomes passengers arriving and departing to and from the airport to offer a little respite in what can often be an arduous and tiring journey. The spinning bar sign is just one of many moving elements throughout the space, including screens and a charming neon shark. The posters use a simple, thick-lined graphic sensibility, complementing the hard, no-nonsense wall imagery and heavy materials. Finally, a well-designed wee sanctuary for the strange, purgatorial feel airports can have.

  15. Twice-itsnicethat-list

    “We have updated our website! :)” said the email which landed in my inbox yesterday morning, in 24-point type, and on referring to the bundle of new work on Twice’s site I can confirm that this proclamation is true. Paris-based art direction and design studio Twice, formed of Fanny Le Bras and Clémentine Berry, is one of my favourites – the duo delivers confidently pared-back, textural design at a consistently high standard. Their newest offerings, including a book for Hyères International Festival of Fashion and Photography and an identity and catalogue called Archimode are no exception to the rule.

  16. Toby-glanville-china-series-its-nice-that-list

    “I think perhaps that a real portrait is one that suggests to the viewer that the subject portrayed is alive, be it a person or even, let’s say, an apple,” photographer Toby Glanville told Liv Siddall in an interview a few months back. “For a photographic portrait to work, I think the author’s ego must be held in abeyance in order to allow the subject to hold the stage.”

  17. Gourmand_covers_it's_nice_that_list

    Yesterday everyone’s favourite food and culture journal unveiled twin covers for its latest issue. In a surreal collaboration between photographer Jenny van Sommers and set designer Rachel Thomas, the ketchup-themed covers (and back covers) for issue six of The Gourmand are taken from a feature paying homage to the humble but ever versatile condiment. “I would love to tell you that it was a calculated strategy but in fact it was a bit more organic,” said co-founder and creative director David Lane of the publication’s first ever dual covers. They simply couldn’t decide between the oversized chip smothered in PVC ketchup and the floating hamburger sandwiched between two cloches, and luckily “they are ideally suited for a split cover.”

  18. Julien-vallon-itsnicethat-list

    This week for the first time (but hopefully not the last) I was asked over email if I wanted to get my kit off. “Just an idea to supplement your article,” Julien Vallon added sweetly. “Do you want to pose for me, as part of this project?”

  19. Iain-tait-itsnicethat-list

    “My voyage in this industry has been mostly one of cheating and blagging,” Iain Tait declared, in a claim it’s perhaps not that easy to believe. As well as being executive creative director at Wieden + Kennedy London, ex-Google creative lab ECD and former creative director at Poke, on his site he describes himself as a “crap blogger” and “average dad.” Modesty, it seems, is all part of his charming MO.

  20. Benedickt-luft-its-nice-that-list

    It’s almost a given that an ex-HORT intern’s going to have an accomplished portfolio, and illustrator and graphic designer Benedikt Luft is no exception. It’s Nice That art director Ali Hanson alerted us to the German creative’s site with the simple, immortal endorsement “mad shit,” and he’s not wrong. It’s hard to pin down exactly what Benedikt’s style is as his portfolio is hugely varied, ranging from straight-up editorial commissions for the likes of Zeit Campus and Converse to surreal comics to some gorgeous sleeve imagery for the Secret 7” records project. So if you want abstract monochromes, a slick solution for an editorial spread or simply a dude who can anthropomorphise a stone with aplomb, looks like Benedikt could be your man.

  21. Kings_cross_pavilions_itsnicethat_list

    Two striking pavilions have been added to the King’s Cross landscape by four Irish architecture studios as part of this year’s London Festival of Architecture. The Red Pavilion was designed as a collaboration between TAKA, Clancy Moore Architects and Steve Larkin Architects, who all share a studio in Dublin. Sat alongside is the Yellow Pavilion created by Belfast-based Hall McKnight.

  22. Cynthia-kittle-itsnicethat-list

    It hasn’t taken long for Cynthia Kittler to find her feet. We hardly have time to blink before the German illustrator produces another bevy of impressive work. No stranger to It’s Nice That, Cynthia keeps us coming back for more and more with her exciting and colourful creations for editorial giants from The New York Times, Creative Review and Die Zeit. Her playful, textured illustration is the perfect foil to conservative magazine layouts, and if the latest wave of commissions for Bilanz, Brummel Magazine, and Die Zeit is anything to go by, she’s showing no signs of slowing down either. It’s not hard to see why; whether it’s poolside cocktails or convivial dinner scenes, her style is both soft and bold, and always distinct whilst being versatile.

  23. Jacob_t_swinney_itsnicethat_list

    While this video has already made the rounds a couple of times, we keep finding ourselves going back to this film by Jacob T. Swinney. Using 55 films, Jacob brilliantly supercuts the first and final frames of each and places them side-by-side. It’s a fascinating insight into the filmmakers’ decisions and the themes that weave their way into the big, blockbuster features. Some of the opening and closing shots are bewitchingly similar, some show progression or misfortune, and others simply use stunning imagery to grab our attention. From Silver Linings Playbook to The Usual Suspects, Jacobs simultaneously captures the anticipation and resolution felt when watching a film beautifully by placing these two moments next to each other.

  24. Maurits_rozema_posters_it's_nice_that_list

    As well as being a talented photographer, Maurits Rozema is a graphic designer we’ve got our eye on. The Dutch creative divides his time between the two practices and often brings them together, as in the beautifully simple publication made with friend and collaborator Rebecca Worth, First Summer. Maurits was also spotlighted in design site Fontanel’s book Dutch Design Talents 14 we featured earlier this year.

  25. Franccesa-jane-allen-itsnciethat-list

    If there’s one thing the UK’s art institutions are doing right, it’s their representation of the youngest, freshest art and design talent emerging from education across the country. Freshfaced + Wildeyed is The Photographers’ Gallery’s annual exhibition dedicated to supporting young, up-and-coming photographers. Established in 2008, this year is the seventh instalment, and the 2015 selection is astonishingly impressive. Here are the five we can’t get out of our heads.

  26. Here_london_sam_bradley_itsnicethat_list

    At this year’s Here we commissioned London-based photographer Sam Bradley to capture the day behind the scenes. Held at the Royal Geographical society, Sam has captured the grandeur of the space perfectly. With beautiful portraits of the speakers, the day’s activities and a few crowd shots, it’s a fantastic peek at one of our favourite days of the year.

  27. Tj_tambellini_year_west_itsnicethat_list

    In his vivid series Year West, photographer TJ Tambellini allows us to revel in the abstract with beautifully cropped close-ups. On first glance this series is centred on the hyperreal quality of the everyday, but beyond the aesthetics this personal project signifies change for the photographer. “These photos were taken a year after moving to Los Angeles, a pivotal moment where I noticed a shift in style and medium, creating a more sculptural product.”

  28. Here-2015-itsnicethat-list

    During Charlotte Heal’s brilliant run-through of her career and her redesign of Kinfolk, she revealed that undertaking each project is like an actor getting into a new character for a role. We’d never considered pushing pens and pixels as analogous to treading the boards before, but as with all our speakers at last week’s Here London, the It’s Nice That-curated creative conference, Charlotte made us look at creativity in a new way. Here’s what else we learned:

  29. Matthew_craven_demiurge_it's_nice_that_list

    Matthew Craven’s dizzying mix of ink patterns, cut-outs and ancient culture is as powerful as it is studied. We’ve written about the New York artist’s vivid collages before, and in his most recent series demiURGE, Matthew pairs both tribal and Greek sculpture with his hand-drawn designs and recurring motifs. His images play with materials as much as they play with time, and with their lost relics and archeological curiosities it’s as if Matthew has picked through old history textbooks and back issues of National Geographic for the mystic effect that makes his work so instantly recognisable. Pairing busts, masks, vases and classical bric-a-brac with optical patterns, Matthew’s collages always prove greater than the sum of their parts.

  30. Arc-itsnicethat-list

    The Royal College of Art in London’s student-led magazine Arc is a cut above the rest. Following on from the resounding success of the Work-in-Progress exhibition identity earlier this year, the school brought designers Minna Sakaria and Carolina Dahl of Summer Studio on board again to design the 19th edition of the publication, of which the theme is Contagion.

  31. Sarah-vanbelle-itsnicethat-list-new

    Antwerp-based designer and illustrator Sarah Vanbelle knows her way around shapes. Take any one of her vibrant, playful images and before long you’ll have deciphered a circle, a rectangle, a host of triangles taking the form of a round head, the body of a car and the pointed collar on a shirt. There’s something of the primary school exercise book about her style in that respect, but with her developed approach Sarah picks out the minute details of her cheeky characters and uses these – the picture on a keyring or a recognisable shoe – to elevate the image. She’s also a dab hand with hand-drawn type, animated GIFs and infographics, as clients Monocle and Wall Street Journal will testify.

  32. Come-de-bouchony-itsnicethat-pienkowski-list

    We’re pretty big fans of French graphic designer Côme de Bouchony in the It’s Nice That studio – we’ve covered his work again and again and again on the site. So it comes as no great surprise that underneath all of that sharp, reference-laden work lies a Bookshelf bulging with first-rate printed matter. The ten most influential people in magazine design, illustrator Jan Pieńkowski and one very long Italian sausage all have their place. Roll up, roll up!