Ms-300

Assistant Editor Maisie joined It’s Nice That fresh out of university in the summer of 2013 and has stayed with us ever since. She has a particular interest in art, fashion and photography and is a regular on our Studio Audience podcast.

ms@itsnicethat.com@maisieskidmore

951 articles
  1. Gourmand-list-int

    If you’ve passed an independent magazine stand or stepped into a newsagents of late then without a doubt you’ll have some idea of what The Gourmand is. The biannual journal focuses on food in all its guises, and it’s invariably too enticing not to pick up. Founded by David Lane and Marina Tweed, the magazine is something of a pulsating hub for cultural references, with every page bearing the kind of striking imagery that challenges accepted patterns of independent publishing, urging the whole industry forward. You can see why we decided to grab co-founder and creative director David Lane to run us through his five favourite inspirational books from the studio Bookshelf.

  2. Guglielmo-rossi-3-int

    You don’t have to venture far into Guglielmo Rossi’s portfolio to establish that he is a very, very talented designer. His taste for collaboration, whether at design studio Praline, with M9 Design on the Harvard University Press-published Murty Classical Library of India, or on site-specific projects with art and architecture collective The Decorators, he works with a broad and diverse selection of fellow creatives, resulting in an equally assorted selection of work. The common factor is simply the quality.

  3. Antoinecorbineau-6-int

    It’s my personal opinion that some of the most exciting creative work starts life as a side project to distract from commercial jobs. Such is definitely the case for Antoine Corbineau, a French illustrator and designer who has worked on a plethora of projects for commercial clients, drawing up large-scale, intricate scenes of characters interacting in an enormous, often map-like style. Potentially even more alluring, however, is Antoine’s painting work. It’s distinctly less bright, almost realist in its approach, depicting familiar domestic scenes and landscapes interspersed with small but resonant human activity. His attention to minute detail – the foliage of a plant, a picture frame, the icons on a computer screen – and his accuracy in creating scenes that you could swear you’d seen before makes this body of work oddly enchanting.

  4. Jussipuikkonen-florentijnhoffman-int-list

    To my mind, a career in editorial photography is akin to living the dream: you hang out at home in your pyjamas waiting for a phone call informing you that you’ll be sent halfway around the world to photograph some enormously talented, charismatic character, and be put up in five star hotels and business class all the way. I recognise that more than likely the opposite is true: it’s a skanky mouldy flat, you’re put on the number 55 bus to shoot somebody who lives down the road, and there’s neither a five star hotel nor a plane anywhere in sight. Still, the breadth of brilliant people to photograph is there, and that’s enough to incite envy in even the most satisfied of people.

  5. Edithcarron-list-2-int

    How’s this for a delightful collection of images? Edith Carron is a French illustrator who has been working out of Berlin for the past seven years, and her portfolio comprises a beguiling combination of fun, socially-conscious and mischievous themes delivered in coloured pencil and print. And it’s fantastic. So much so, in fact, that The New York Times, Zeit Campus Magazin and Suddeutsche Zeitung Magazin are only three from a client list longer than we care to count who have commissioned Edith to make first-rate work, including this wonderful cover for Revue Citrus, depicting two male footballers in a loving embrace before their fans. Edith also generously posts a collection of personal work in her Journal, in which she takes snapshots from everyday life and makes them look like something out of a technicolour children’s book-inspired dream. What a treat.

  6. Petracollins-drivetime-list-int

    If you’re prone to being envious of impossibly beautiful creative people living dreamy lives in perpetually sunny places, I would advise you to look away now. We already knew Petra Collins was a dab hand at documenting the pleasures and perils of teenage life through her photography, but as this new film commissioned by COS and picked up on by Dazed Digital aptly demonstrates, she’s not bad at filmmaking either. Drive Time sees Petra douse life in Los Angeles with the same compelling potion that her photographs do, as she films her friends Cherry Glazerr front woman Clementine Creevy, photographer Autumn de Wilde and her daughter Arrow, artists Erin and Sam Falls and producer Asma Maroof wandering dreamily around the city, musing sweetly on the art scene there. It’s hazy and sun-soaked and plays into the hands of all the best cliches Hollywood entertains. Which, from time to time, is precisely what you need.

  7. Fonshickmann-list-int

    A couple of weeks back we had Fons Hickmann, founder of the eponymous design studio Fons Hickmann m23 in Berlin, talk us through his favourite publications, so that we could get a bit of an insight into his taste, influences and inspirations. In the process, we found out that the studio has recently begin working on Germany’s Greenpeace Media. “For Greenpeace Media we design magazines, posters and even packing tape,” the studio’s website explains. “Working with political and social topics has always been important and close to the heart of m23.”

  8. Samplerman-list-int

    Yvan Guillo is not an illustrator who is about to be held back by traditional practices. One day while he was sampling the tonal background of vintage comics to create a more retro feel in his own panels, he accidentally selected an area with a character in it, and his crazy new mash-up technique was born. He has continued creating works using these techniques under the pseudonym Samplerman, posting them on a Tumblr of the same name to create an extensive series. Even better, he created the word “procrastinatic” to describe such an activity. Making up formats and adjectives? Who is this enigmatic creator?

  9. Arndtbenedikt-posters-list-int

    Scrolling through Frankfurt-based design agency Arndt Benedikt’s website, I get the impression that somebody in the studio is sneaking off every half an hour to immortalise some of the fantastic design work they’re creating in poster form. Or maybe managing partners Felix Gross and Falko Ohlmer are just really into posters – in which case, hurrah! Alongside remarkably advanced work like this campaign for Greenpeace, and some mature corporate design work they make these: bright, dynamic and joyous posters, for everything from a spell teaching at the University of Applied Sciences Mainz to an open air party in Hamburg. They’re informative and really nice to look at, which is all we need from our large-scale printed matter.

  10. List-4

    January is historically a dingy, cold and poorly financed month, so we thought we’d have a go at alleviating some of the misery by kicking off 2015 with a series of talks about Humour. And it bloody worked! We had four speakers who all employ humour in their work in wildly diverse ways to see if they could eke a few laughs out of our audience. And eke they did!

  11. Teoconnor-bookshelf-list-int

    If you’ve laid your eyes on a poster for one of Somerset House’s exhibitions recently then you’ve more than likely been looking at the work of Teo Connor’s eponymous east London design agency. Teo, who previously co-founded No Days Off, has since worked on a bunch of chic campaigns for the cultural institution, not to mention projects for Tate, Nike and the V&A. She’s also co-founder of The W Project, which champions women in the creative industries through a series of events and exhibitions, which means she basically ticks every box. Brilliant woman.

  12. Kenzo-ss15-list-int

    If you thought that writing a Printed Pages feature about KENZO – in which I delve in glorious technicolour detail into the brand’s past collaborations over the course of a 12-page spread – would stop my perpetual blathering on about them, then I’m afraid you thought wrong. It’s a new season, meaning a whole new visual campaign, and as ever I’m incapable of reining in my admiration for the masterminds behind KENZO’s art direction.

  13. List

    Assistant editor Maisie Skidmore chimes in on the debate about the presence of full-frontal male nudity in Rick Owens’ AW15 collection which showed in Paris a few days ago. Do you think penises on the catwalk are a step too far? Leave your comments below!

  14. Marygaudin-list-int

    Architectural photography can often feel elitist at best and stuffy at worst, so imagine our delight to come across this new book Down the Long Driveway, You’ll See It, by New Zealand-born, Montpellier-based photographer Mary Gaudin.

  15. Margheritaurbani-list-int

    Being huge fans of Andy Rementer’s cheeky work we’ve seen illustrator Margherita Urbani’s name bandied around a lot over the past few years, whether in credits in Apartamento or The New York Times, but it wasn’t until last week that we thought to look up exactly what she does. Which, as it turns out, is quite a lot.

  16. Unnamed

    If you’ve been waiting all week for Friday evening like a shipwrecked sailor eagerly watches the horizon for the first sign of a rescue mission, then the Weekender is that hazy pink flare in the distance – the sign that you’re almost there! This week we’ve got an animation about our dependence on technology; a deluge of interviews with super talented artists, designers, photographers and printmakers; a smattering of erotica; a collection of photographs of people who want to be mermaids and a round-up of what’s happened in the world this week, from a certain newspaper’s fascination with the humble nip to TLC’s hotly-anticipated comeback. Delve in!

  17. Hardyseiler-hannover-list-int

    When Hanover-based designers Bureau Hardy Seiler and web design agency Created by Monkeys decided to pitch to design the identity for the Freies Theater Hannover, they found themselves faced with a dilemma. The theatre hosts every flavour of live performance going, from puppetry and musical shows to experimental dance, and all in one flexible and family-friendly space. How could they create a graphic language to match that?

  18. Charlottedelarue-list-3-int

    Illustrator and art director Charlotte Delarue’s varied work shows her to be an uncommonly talented illustrator, conjuring incredibly realistic portraits out of paper and pencil safe in the knowledge that she doesn’t need to do anything more to make them impressive. Her art direction is of another ilk entirely, however – she works with the likes of electro acts Chromeo, Justice and Kavinsky to draw up impactful logotypes and album artwork concepts that can be spotted from miles away, from the golden legs which reappear on almost every Chromeo album cover to Kavinsky’s mysterious blue-tinged scenes.

  19. Atelierbingo-list-int

    Up to the point when I opened Atelier Bingo’s new zine Wogoo Zoogi I’d never wondered what two aliens in heated conversation might look like. Having had a read I can now confirm that the answer is “they are speaking, singing very strangely, and they have a hair on their tongues." The newest bout of work from French illustration and surface design duo Adèle Favreau and Maxime Prou is a wonderful celebration of playful, dynamic, abstract art; blending shapes, colours and patterns in a glorious puddle of chaos thinly disguised as alien chat. In fact, it’s everything we’ve been led to expect from the pair, who we’ve dolloped praise on in the past.

  20. Faigahmed-carpets-list-2-int

    Faig Ahmed is an Azerbaijani artist doing remarkable things with carpets. He takes traditional Azerbaijani rugs – enormous, beautiful intricate creations – un-weaves them, and reconstructs them to create new patterns and shapes, subverting traditional usage of rugs as domestic objects to be walked all over, and rejuvenating them with optical illusions and techniques reminiscent of contemporary internet art. 

  21. Davidbatchelor-october-13-int

    If you go down to the Whitechapel Gallery anytime between now and early April you’ll be sure to come across a huge breadth of work chronicling the adventures of the black square, from 1915 all the way up to the present day. It’s fairly monochromatic, as you might expect. Upstairs, however, things get drastically more colourful – especially once you come to David Batchelor’s specially “disrupted” issue of October, one of the most respected art journals out there, first published in 1976 and edited by esteemed writers Michel Foucault, Richard Foreman and Noël Burch.

  22. Mobydigg-aaberaward-1-int

    How many design studios can you think of who are named after a mis-pronounced classic novel? Because Munich-based design studio Moby Digg is, and that fact, coupled with their fun, bright site, propels them above most straight-laced studios in our book.

  23. Fonshickmann-bookshelf-2

    It’s not very often we have a selection of vintage porn magazines masquerading as a book about the history of cinema on It’s Nice That, and for this special occasion we have Professor Fons Hickmann, founder of Berlin studio Fons Hickmann m23, to thank – he stumbled across the rare finding at a French flea market.

  24. Stephenshames-bronx_boys-list

    If the photographs in Stephen Shames’ series Bronx Boys don’t seem to sit comfortably alongside the funny, shareable, imagined-one-day-and-shot-the next photographic projects which we are so accustomed to seeing on the internet, then that’s because they don’t. Rather, Bronx Boys is the product of 23 years spent photographing a group of people living in the Bronx, New York City, and the photographs were taken not to garner likes or shares, but to publicise the plight of one of the poorest areas in NYC.

  25. Thomasprior-handball-list-3-int

    Thomas Prior is one of those sneaky names who first crept onto our radar with a stunning series documenting a firework fight in Tultepec, Mexico, and has since reappeared at six-monthly intervals with new and ever more adventurous projects from around the world. There was February last year, for example, when he photographed the YouTube awards for Vice magazine, and then a few months later he cropped up again with this brilliant series of images taken in Greece and Turkey for Afar magazine.

  26. List

    Andy Sewell’s new book Something Like a Nest is an archetypal portrayal of middle class Britishness, and it’s a picturesque, sentimental and charming one at that. To our delight, he steers clear of stereotypes and tired clichés – there are no weather-worn farmers nor Wellington boots in here, no sir – and instead creates a clear and honest portrait of country life. Placing perfectly centred shots of kitchen sinks and surrounding phenomena (plants, hand-soap, Fairy Liquid) alongside images of the English countryside coated in frost and glittering in the sun and frogspawn in Kilner jars, it’s enough to make even the most steely-hearted of expats teary-eyed.

  27. List

    On this day 96 years ago prohibition was passed by the U.S. government, plunging the United States into a parched wasteland of (mainly) sober, miserable people for a long 14 years. Thankfully this is the case neither in England nor in 2015, so we’re cracking open the beers and pouring one out for the prohibited. It’s the weekend! Here’s the Weekender, and our rundown of what’s happened in the art and design world this week. Have a good one!

  28. List

    If you were to search for a photographer who defines that gorgeous hazy middle ground between sleep and wakefulness, Marcelo Gomes would without a doubt be your best bet. He has built a career on creating images imbued with the kind of indistinct beauty that makes all of his subjects look about 50% more ethereal, nailing that dreamy aesthetic where so many photographers stumble.

  29. List

    If I’d had the good fortune to live in Mexico City in the 1980s I’d like to think I’d have gone to every disco night going, and wallpapered my bedroom with the flyers from the nights of debauchery I spent knocking back mescal with the locals and getting down to the Bee Gees. Alas, I didn’t grow up there – I wasn’t even alive then – but fortunately for us, Jose Luis Lugo Hernández, the owner of Panther Publishing in Mexico City, has been diligently collecting the flyers for disco nights since the birth of the scene there more than 30 years ago. So we can live vicariously through him.

  30. List

    Rand Renfrow is one of the illustrators we came across among the scores of upcoming artists and illustrators publishing with Clay Hickson’s independent project Tan & Loose yesterday, and seeing as how last time we featured him it was in our Introducing feature nearly two years ago, it seemed high time to check in.

  31. List

    The more we see of FKA Twigs, the more it becomes apparent that there’s no end to what she can do. She has a voice like nothing we’ve ever heard before, she dances like an extra-terrestrial placed on this earth solely to do so, and she directs all of her own music videos, because her creative vision for the visuals which accompany her music is such that nobody else could quite nail it. So the word talented doesn’t really cover it.

  32. List

    In 1915, two years before the Russian Revolution took place, an exhibition took place in St Petersburg which turned the art world upside down. Entitled The Last Futurist Exhibition of Paintings: 0.10, it included one of Kazimir Malevich’s now iconic black square paintings, a profound and original offering in a 20th Century society which repressed modern ideas almost as furiously as it bred them, and it’s this spirit of radical thinking in the midst of a restrictive society which sits at the root of the Whitechapel Gallery’s new exploration of abstract art, Adventures of the Black Square.

  33. 20

    “All hail Hickson!” were the words with which we finished our last post about Chicago-based illustrator Clay Hickson back in 2012, and while it doesn’t give us much to improve on, the expression certainly still seems to fit our feelings for him. Since we last checked in, Clay has developed his practice immeasurably, stepping away from pencils to embrace Adobe Illustrator and printmaking all the more enthusiastically, and making a heap of new work in the process. He’s stuck to his old penchant for pop surrealist scenes and funny-shaped girl parts – he loves a boob and a sausage, does Clay – but the calibre of the work has improved in a striking way.

  34. List

    Last week Apartamento’s co-founder and art director Omar Sosa mentioned an upcoming collaboration with artist Nathalie Du Pasquier in his Bookshelf feature, and purely by chance this week we have Nathalie herself running us through her favourite books. What a nice coincidence!

  35. List

    Presenting Matt Chase, the editorial illustrator living and working in Washington DC, who can transform a wishy-washy concept into a solid hunk of imagery with a snap of the fingers. You’ve likely seen his work already without knowing it – maybe in the New York Times, on the cover of one of Douglas Coupland’s novels, or perhaps in the Wall Street Journal if you’re that way inclined.

  36. List

    With trends and zeitgeists evolving faster than us mere mortals can keep track of, sometimes a helping hand in watching over what’s going on in the creative world can be necessary. Fortunately branding and communications agency 3 Deep have taken it upon themselves to help us out by creating a broadsheet which redefines “our engagement with luxury while celebrating those at the nexus of creativity, art and commerce.”

  37. List

    “Breath of fresh air” might be an expression used mainly by teachers when describing particularly astute pupils, but it’s so applicable to Dutch designer Bram Kinet’s lo-fi posters that I can’t help but bandy it about. The type is large and retro, the colour combinations are unexpected and there’s a collage-influenced, freeform element to his style that’s reminiscent of the posters junior school kids use to advertise their school discos, in the absolute best way. A man with an owl head and a red felt-tip penis surfing on a large flat fish, for example? How could we resist?

  38. List

    On New Year’s Eve in 1965, photographer Lisetta Carmi met and photographed a group of transvestites living and working on the Via de Campo in Genoa, Italy. It was the beginning of a seven year relationship with the group, considered outsiders by Italian society, and led to the publication of I Travestiti, an incredibly controversial book of all the images Lisetta took over this stretch of time. Now, almost 50 years later, Jacopo Benassi, a photographer already famed for his work documenting prostitution and gay culture, has retraced Lisetta’s original steps, tracking down the two remaining subjects from that body of Lisetta’s work – Rossella and Ursula.

  39. 2

    There are cool designers, and then there are those of Leslie David’s calibre, who gaze nonchalantly down upon their pretenders with a talented eye and a practice so diverse that it firmly establishes their spot among the higher echelons of creative standards. Paris-based Leslie has a been around for some time now, and her client list is an incredible testament to the quality of her work, featuring some of the greatest players across fashion, music, media and retail. Specialising in brand image for fashion and culture brands, her aesthetic blends illustration, design and typography in an always unexpected and never less-than-excellent blend.

  40. Weekender-image

    Given that it’s the first week back at work after a long fortnight spent cramming mince pies and Baileys into our faces while flicking between The Wizard of Oz and Call the Midwife, you’d think the creative world might be slow getting back into the swing of things. Oh no. This week we’ve seen the cartooning world torn apart only to rise up even stronger, a mad new interactive website launched by Panda Bear, some seriously impressive new identity work from the likes of Pentagram, and books, films and adverts spewed out all over the shop. Here’s our pick of the best of the week.