Paper Goods: Life in the Indie Lane

As many of you know, Chronicle Books is lucky enough to work with some of the most creative and inspiring indie artists in the country (and the world, but that is for another blog post). I thought I’d share some background information and links for a few of these artists.

James Jean

James Jean was born in Taiwan and raised in New Jersey. While he started out creating covers for comics (winning eight Eisner Awards), his work is known, loved, and collected by those that wear Prada as well as those that read Giant Robot – yes, his work was the inspiration for a recent line by the famed House of Prada. Juxtapoz Magazine selected his 2009 exhibition at the Jonathan Levine Gallery in New York as one of the Top 100 Moments of the year.

You can read an interview with James on the Little Chimp Society website here.

Nikki McClure

According to her Cinders Gallery bio:

Nikki McClure of Olympia, Washington is known for her painstakingly intricate and beautiful paper cuts. Armed with an X-acto knife, she cuts out her images from a single sheet of paper and creates a bold language that translates the complex poetry of motherhood, nature, and activism into a simple and endearing picture.

Her work depicts the virtues of hard labor and patience, which is inherent in her process as well as in the images themselves: weathered hands washing dishes, people sweeping, mothers caring for their babies, and farmers working the land. But there is also a large element of celebration, of taking the time to roll around in the grass and get wet from the early morning dew. The need for all of us to lay down on the ground, grab hold of the earth, look at the stars and dream. She magnifies the importance of simple things, like the change of seasons, slowing down the world for a moment so we can actually taste it.

You can read the complete bio on Nikki’s site or read (and listen to) a conversation between Cynthia Rylant and Nikki McClure that originally aired on Oregon Public Radio.

Ray Fenwick

Ray is an artist and illustrator living in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. A former improv comedian and theatre school dropout, Ray now occupies himself drawing and painting with a focus on language, text, and humor. As an illustrator, he has worked for The New York Times, Nike, Nickelodeon, Pentagram and many others.

You’ll find lots of examples of his work on the Co & Co Design Collective website, and a blog interview on the Get Harvest Blog about how he made a book for them.

Grady McFerrin

Grady is a fabulous artist and illustrator who has been very busy working on projects as diverse as wine labels, music and book covers, and illustrations for major US publications including The New York Times, Fortune Magazine and The Utne Reader. You can see a selection of his work on his site and read an interview that appeared in Communication Arts this past June.

Add a comment and let us know which is your favorite new product. As a thank you, we’ll offer you a 25% discount, plus free shipping (within the US) on any Chronicle stationery item until February 28, 2010. Just use Promo Code: STA10 at checkout.

Patti Quill
Marketing & Publicity Manager

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