Keith Scharwath is an LA based designer, illustrator and art director who has been creating iconic works for the art, fashion, and music industries for the past 10 years. Notable projects include poster, title and promotional design for the 2008 film Beautiful Losers; exhibition design for Re-Run, a traveling art show curated by Aaron Rose; and most recently guest art directing the spring 2010 issue of GOOD magazine. Originally from New Jersey, Keith studied at the School of Visual Arts in New York.”

Keith has some beautiful work in his portfolio that exercises a high degree of understanding what it takes to move between curation and creation. His exhibition work is truly stunning.

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Los Angeles based illustrator Andrew Holder has updated with several new examples of his personal brand of illustration.

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Bobby from Kitsune Noir strolled into Arktitp’s Project Space in Los Angeles to capture several behind-the-scenes images from the Parra exhibit. It looks like it was a great show and Parra decided to keep it black and white. The above piece was my favorite. Be sure to scroll down at the always wonderful Kitsune Noir to see more images from the exhibition.

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Pingzoo‘ is the work of Ping Zhu, a Los Angeles-based illustrator who paints in gouache on BFK Rives printmaking paper.

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Ryan Schude has spent the last ten years moving between Chicago, San Francisco, San Diego and LA. All the while he has been building a tremendous portfolio of photography including some amazing set piece imagery that turn everyday environments into unique works of art.

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Pete McDonald has been toiling away for some time at Buck, a studio that I have always respected especially considering some of the fantastic work they produced for us while I was at Cactus for the Own Your C campaign. The talent at Buck runs from floor to ceiling and even seeps all the way into the walls. Apparently Pete has recently decided to have a go at a freelance designer, illustrator and motionographer and as would be expected with someone who has worked for Buck, he has some nice work in his portfolio. Be sure to click through some of great drawings in McDonald’s sketchbook as well.

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LA-based designer, illustrator and artist Demetrius May has some sincerely radical work in one of the more wild portfolios I have seen in some time. There are some very strange things going on in his work but it is all art and I love that. He graduated in 2008 with a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts, Illustration from the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California. Since then, he has been making, like I said, some seriously radical work. It will be interesting to see what he does in the future.

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The Darling Life‘ is the work and portfolio of Los Angeles-based photographer Laura Taylor who despite having some moody images in terms of color and light, seems to have a somewhat sunny perspective on life.

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The Manifest Equality show kicks off this week in LA and will run from March 3rd through the 7th. I was invited to exhibit in the show after having exhibited in the Manifest Hope show during the Democratic National Convention. Manifest Equality’s focus is encouraging the equalization of civil rights for the gay community. It’s an issue I have strong feelings about. It’s my opinion, and you can call this liberal or whatever you like that under the constitution as citizens, so long as we are not breaking the law we should have equal rights to pursue happiness however we see fit. If there is any one group in this country, a supposed ‘free’ country who does not have those equal rights, then it is a threat to the rights of all the people and any other group could be singled out to have their rights revoked. This falls outside of the moral spectrum and lives in the realm of the private life. Sexuality and the expression of sexuality as well as the pursuit of relationships should be the right of every free person under a democratic state.

The original posters I created focused on a particular part of the male anatomy that I see as the central problem in the gay rights equation. The minute this bit of anatomy rears it’s head (yes, a pun is intended) is the minute everyone ruffles and loses their nerve. I am a married hetrosexual man who was raised in a very small town in Nebraska in a conservative household, but I have never understood this. I am not bothered by this part of the anatomy or what people choose to do with it. So I decided to put that right out front and make people have to face it head on (again, pun intended) and spend a moment thinking why it makes people so uncomfortable. Unfortunately, the posters (which I went to the trouble of having 100 screen printed and shipped to LA) were rejected on the grounds of being ‘too graphic’ and controversial for display.

Needless to say, I was very disappointed and lashed out by sending some angry emails Shepard Fairey and Ron English’s way. It was a snap judgement that I should have considered before jumping to and Fairey wasn’t very happy with my email. In retrospect, I know there is a time and place for everything. After speaking at length with the show organizer Yosi Sergant, I realized this just wasn’t the right place to be hanging a giant red, white and blue prick. Shepard Fairey remarked that I should ‘take it to the streets’ and maybe he is right. My point was that I felt some of the work should be provocative and angry in tone if this really is a ‘civil rights issue’. I think as a nation we have grown far too apathetic and just ‘accept’ a lot of the laws handed down to us by our government. Our government works for us. We do not work for them. If you want change in this country, you have to get out there knock on the Whitehouse door and say, ‘we the American public, want this to change now!’

So, I revised my work and created a new poster, which you can see at the top of this post that will now be exhibited at the show. It turned out alright, but I still think it lacks the teeth of the original posters which were really created to provoke the issue as a political one that begs a public outcry. I decided not to attend the show after losing out on my investment in printing the posters, but I do wish all the artists exhibiting the very best of luck, and I will be hoping the show is a huge success. It will be interesting to see the rest of the artists work from the show once images begin to hit the web. If you are in LA, the show opens Wednesday from 11am until 6pm at 1341 Vine Street. If you can be there, I wouldn’t miss this one. It should be a thought provoking event, and might I suggest standing outside and waiving one of my posters in the air?

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Los Angeles-based motion designer Nathaniel Howe has updated with a massive scroll of motion boards. Many of which are just downright beautiful with single frames that could serve as stand alone pieces of fine art.

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Fashion photographer Gabriel Jeffrey has a dead sexy body of work that you can’t even try to tear your eyes away from. It all starts with the first image that loads on his home page. He might also be a Bowie fan. I don’t know, call it a wild guess.

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Josh Finklea is originally from Austin, Texas and currently attends the Art Center College of Design is Los Angeles. His work is already beautifully considered for still being in study.

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Painter Kris Lewis studied Illustration at The University of the Arts in Philadelphia, but now resides in Los Angeles. He freezes the vivid emotions conveyed by the subjects within his paintings and uses a muted color palette in order to maximize the viewers focus. The end result is striking imagery.

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Although it appears that Alex Cherry’s illustrations are created digitally, they maintain a tactile quality making them feel more like art than digital imaging. It could be that he is drawing and painting first, then scanning his hand-crafted work to complete digitally. Unfortunately, it doesn’t really say much of anything about him or how he operates on his website.

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Mike Orduna A.K.A. Fatoe has been busy as always and there some tasty updates of his unique brand of design and illustration now up at his website.

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Photographer Bryan Sheffield thinks espresso, Vitamin Water and Diet Coke are great beverages. He also composes some beautiful images of fascinating people.

It’s been a very long time since I have written about his work but there appears to be some updates since I last dropped in.

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There appears to be a few small but compelling updates to Eric Carl’s unique body of work at Sans-Concept.

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RJ Shaughnessy has some really moody, dreamy and atmospheric photos in his book that transport you emotionally to the environment they were captured in.

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