Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Feature of the Day #16: Jon Carling

A Ruse of Circles
A Ruse of Circles
Today's feature of the day goes to Jon Carling and his wonderful pen and ink illustrations. Carling grew up in the once rural grassy hills of El Sobrante. He graduated in 2002 from Oakland's CCA with a degree in illustration. Carling designs furniture and creates illustrations in his home studio. He primarily works in pen and ink which he enjoys because, "you don't pay much for supplies, and you can do it in bed."
Hypnotized Caterpillar
Hypnotized Caterpillar

When it comes to his work, he doesn't like to limit himself to any one subject matter or influence. Carling tries to smash as many ideas into his work as possible. He tries to interpret life the way he saw it as a child, and compare and contrast it to how he sees it today. 
This style is clear to see in his illustrations which have the feel of storybook illustrations mixed with fables, boiled down to the essentials, and beautifully rendered in ink. In most of his drawings, Carling focuses on two subjects who are interacting in various fashions. In A Ruse of Circles (see above), a rabbit is stunned by the hypnotic beams cast by an owl's eyes. The owl seems to be a costume worn by an unseen force. A hunter using a clever disguise perhaps? It seems to be open for interpretation; much like all of his drawings.
River Crossing
River Crossing
Perhaps there is a secret code that Carling has to decode the strange happenings that occur in his illustrations. Carling seems to have a different, but wonderful way of seeing the world around him and even better, is able to share it with his audience. We can only glimpse and wonder at the stories behind the ink since Carling leaves no descriptions. Though, without descriptions, the viewer's mind can fill in the details with whatever their imagination can dream up. What do you think of when you see River Crossing? (pictured above right)
Check out a wide-variety of illustrations, buttons, and a few shirts in Carling's Etsy store today!

~Squirrel Creek Creations
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