Noir’s practice has a strong emphasis on line and aims to simplify forms to their most basic elements. This simplicity reflected the necessity of painting quickly outdoors in a hazardous environment with very real risks to his personal safety. Noir reacted to his environment and his monsters are a metaphor for the Wall itself, each one relating to his experiences or feelings of what he calls a ‘killing machine’.
Freedom Boulevard Mural
Shapes, Hackney Wick
The Acton Giant
Sometimes described as a Renaissance man, Gary Mayes focuses his creative talents on animation and motion graphics, enabling him to maximise his skillset while satisfying his creative muse. Clients love working with him because he embraces a variety of approaches and ideas, never deploying a one-size-fits-all style or technique.
Check out the full animation here.
It’s been 35 years since the release of Margaret Atwood’s seminal tome The Handmaid’s Tale. Shortlisted for the 1986 Booker Prize, the novel paints a vivid picture of a modern day America that has been transformed into the totalitarian state of Gilead: a patriarchial, Puritan society where fertile women are forced to produce offspring for childless couples.
There is one central element of The Testaments’ plot that is alluded to with its distinctive cover design by Noma Bar: two of the book’s narrators are believed to be Offred’s daughters (the first of which was snatched from her and raised by a Commander family, while the younger girl was born during the course of her escape from Gilead).
Bar’s brief from the publisher was to create a contrasting image of the two sisters seen on the front and back covers, playing up to the fact that they are in wholly different situations, locations and circumstances. While the front cover bears a generic resemblance to his design for The Handmaid’s Tale cover, featuring the handmaids’ distinctive cloak and bonnet, the back cover depicts a girl that would be recognisable to most of us today, wearing earrings and her hair tied up.
“The main thing I wanted to do was to show the parallel worlds and lives of the two girls by reflecting and mirroring the sisters,” says Bar. “We chose the design as a double cover as I wanted to highlight the two characters’ presence – it’s not about one sister, it’s about two worlds.”
“Basically, it’s 25 frames per second and it’s a very insane way of doing things, really,” says Phoebe McCaughley of her painstakingly crafted animations. Working with scraps of fabric and leftover packaging – which she uses to build her characters – McCaughley has found an innate talent for recreating natural movement. She’s also shown a deft hand for dealing with the big topics such as motherhood and mental health, which she manages to explore with an element of light-heartedness.
Not only is her work charming and relatable, it’s a reminder of just how enjoyable stop motion can be, when it’s done right.