Saturday, May 2, 2015

A is for Amos

If you want to have an epic moment in the day, find a place from which you can watch the sunset and listen to the theme from Jurassic Park (sounds a bit creepy.. but feels nice). That's what I did on Record Store day. This year it was special for me because my first printed book of illustration released by Avery Hill Publlishing saw the light of day at Gosh! Comics in London. Unfortunately I couldn't be there, so as I said I was enjoying John Williams's heroic soundtrack at home and being in London only in spirit.
"A is for Amos" is an ABC of illustrated musicians/bands, and it is something I've been meaning to create for a while. I am so grateful to Ricky and David of Avery Hill Publishing for being incredibly helpful, creative and supportive and helping the book see the light. Thank you! Thank you!
It feels so amazing when an ethereal idea takes shape and turns into something you can share with others, touch and even smell hah! - who doesn't like the smell of newly-published books? It feels a bit like magic, doesn't it? And Avery Hill Publishing was responsible for the transformation bit.

I wanted to share some sneak peeks from the progress as well as the finished book with you and let you know that if you would like a copy, this is the place to purchase one

And if you do get one, it would be lovely to hear which letter is your favourite! It took me quite a while to make up the list. I had to sacrifice some of the musicians I love because their names all seem to begin with the same letters (either B or J... but who knows maybe someday there'll be volume 2

and I'll be able to fit everyone in!). I did enjoy the process - it was a feast. Music and illustration are my two passions and they now co-exist in this little book, which is something of a love letter to all musicians whose music has been a driving force for me in life and in art.
Hope you enjoy looking through it as much as I enjoyed drawing it!

I will leave you with one of the featured musicians from the illustrated ABC and their beautiful song!

<<< PS This picture pretty much sums up how I feel about the whole thing : )
Thanks for attention and a beautiful weekend to all!


Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Top 10 music moments in film

I often find that art needs music played while looking at it. Music helps memorise emotions better and in combination with the sight creates a memorable impression. My drawings need a soundtrack of their own, too, but then I always draw to music and so associate a certain artwork of mine with a melody or a song. A perfect synthesis of music and visual representation of an idea is a double pleasure, a rare thing. I decided to make a top 10 list of my favourite music moments in cinema and maybe you can add to it! I bet I forgot something important.

10 Institute Benjamenta: one of the strangest and most fascinating films I have watched.

9 Fellowship of the Ring: There's so much magic and grandeur about this scene that it's overwhelming

8 Twin Peaks: memory of my childhood, just the music - not the series, don't worry.

7 Pulp Fiction: Tarantino definitely knows how to make one cool title sequence


6 Coraline: I don't watch cartoons, except this one. Every October, just because it gets me in the mood for autumnal adventures. The song is perfect.

5 2001 space oddyssey: no comment

4 Moon: I've never become hooked on the soundtrack so early on in the movie. The theme is repeating throughout and I am never ever tired of it. Ideal mood for the sci-fi mystery

3 Conversation: This melody! Like a vein throbbing in the head of a victim and a thought meandering through the mind of a murderer 

2 Vertigo: No comment on the movie/director/actor/composer/or anyone involved. pure genius behind it all. But just wanted to say how well this same theme was used in a stage play An Inspector Calls, by Stephen Daldry - quite as impressive!

1 Servant: This for me is a perfect synthesis. 

Sunday, September 21, 2014


  I've been preoccupied with the notion of "real life" as of lately. The recent worrisome happenings in Ukraine and other parts of the world made me think about which situation is best described as "real".

In my passively contemplative research I came to a conclusion that everything is real, even your wildest dreams. But at the same time everything is changing and re-shaping. By change and comparison we break the habit of our reality and become more open-minded and able to accept the realities of others. Something we think is unreal was or will be real at some point in history.

 It all started because I've been hearing advice on that we should live the "real life". It always sounded a bit arrogant to me, as if the person suggesting it fought in one of the World wars, went to space and generally had experience spanning hundreds of years. However, the advice is most often heard from those dissatisfied with their lives.

There are so many people for whom having no running water for days or not being paid on time is out of the ordinary, while for others it is common, something they actually learn to expect. I personally, like some Jane Austen character, spent half my school days writing (homework) by candlelight, because the government was saving on electricity. And my childhood was spent in the 90s, not in the 19th century.

Others don't have electricity at all. or home. or food, while some people have difficulty deciding which car to drive to a fancy party.

 But it's the material side to the real life. I guess other sides are even more complicated. Which mentality and way of thinking is more real? Is Maths more real than Literature, because usually you have only one exact answer to the problem, while in books you can have as many opinions as you like.
I really want to see this "reality" checklist, when you've experienced everything in order to be qualified for a real person who is living a real life.

Do wars feel more real than peace?  Probably in life without problems one gets used to the goodness of it and having a sudden obstacle feels like taking a cold shower. then people say they were brought back to reality. To be honest I don't understand why we associate reality with a negative change. Reality is different for everyone, right?

   On this optimistic note, I'll put an end to the tiresome ramblings and share this video with you that I made for the wonderful Moth Rah

Sunday, April 20, 2014

the walls of my city

There's been much talk about Ukraine lately for known reasons. But I have a feeling that not many people imagine what Ukraine is like. I live in Ukraine, but even I don't know much about it as whole. I believe some stereotypes are correct, some are completely misleading. Still, I know my city pretty well. And I do have a very personal attitude and perception of it. I decided to make some posts devoted to my city, so anyone who reads my blog can get a glimpse of what I think my city represents. Being an admirer of ruins and having a very sharp eye for the "sad" houses, I decided to make a post about 'the walls of Chernivtsi." I know in some of you these images will evoke sadness, but it's a nice kind of sadness I hope. And anyway a little sadness never hurt anyone, right? There's this infinite melancholy to our city, which for an ever-seeking mind is quite useful. Most walls on here look old and neglected and in need of a loving master to help them acquire past glory, but still this shabbiness has a charm of its own. The palette can be quite beautiful too, don't you think?

Thursday, April 10, 2014

the magic of travelling

I feel like I've been neglecting my blog a lot lately what with the current unsettling situation in my country and with the similar situation in my head, so I decided I need to add blog writing to my unhealthy state of constant drawing.
 Recently I returned from a short visit to the UK. With England being so different from my country, I found it almost like a trip to another planet. Perhaps I'm just too observant especially on my travels. ..because I hear people say I exaggerate. Some places do seem very much like another planet to me, especially Oxford. I know that locals often underrate places they live in and it's hard to get the proper feeling of a town when you are a visitor, but I do believe there is a kind of a language that places speak to people. and when you understand this language spoken to you in a different corner of the world, it's quite a feeling!

In any case, I was happy to see some great friends of mine and dear people and practise my awkwardness on them and to actually think in a different way and see things with different eyes. I mean it. Have you ever heard of geographical psychology? I don't fully understand the subject, as I only read some things about it, but it's definitely something to do with psychology... and geography haha! There's just more than a physical border between countries. I guess. Whenever you cross the customs control there's another border, a wall of mentality, thoughts and experiences that differ completely from the ones you're used to in your town, city or country. People often cross one border failing to cross another. I want to think I can cross the psychological border of other countries as well, but who knows, maybe it's just my imagination. Still I can feel myself  a little changed in different places.
 When I am going somewhere I can clearly imagine myself as a little dot on the map of the world moving east/south/west or north. I am very aware of the route and destination and my place on the planet. Probably that's because I've been always fascinated with travels. when i was a child my room had a big world map on the wall and several globes. I've always been fascinated by travelling /nature documentaries, never missed an episode of Cousteau.. There is even a polar explorer connection in the family.
 It's so calming watching the town and its residents as you walk down the streets and if you are alone on a journey, you notice you become completely invisible, safe for the moments when you are trying to run across the road and the car suddenly stops and signals loudly.
I usually take pictures compulsively, just to share them with others at home. In general I find the process quite annoying. Photos from travels minimize everything to a rather poor visual representation, minus the excitement of the moment, the sounds, the smells, the wind, the true light and other things that me and my camera aren't very good at capturing. I find that if you look long enough, without documenting it, you'll remember the moment. Like, for example, a beautiful magpie sitting on a gilded table in the garden and picking the crumbs left by a party with the sun setting slowly in the background. I think I've reached the point of being at my most sentimental. Time to change the train.

Ok, here's Oxford. It's the place which has the most things I like per sq.m. (and I mean the dinosaur's tail as well!)
I take Oxford in with certain types of music only: Radiohead, music of the middle ages, or even opera are all perfect, in my eyes this music makes the city's features more well-defined.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

i found a star

To take my mind off things I decided I need to do exactly that and fresh air is by far the best medicine. Today i took a walk with my friend which resulted in the following:
I've been heavily on Smashing Pumpkins this week again, and I've been looking at some of their imagery from Mellon Collie era (just to put me in the mood), besides i bought a book on Alchemy and Mysticism at Blackwell which is abundant in inspirational symbols.. stars, moons and suns. So when I found this star in the backyard of the old house today i sensed some magic underway. Photos by my friend Natasha

In the morning I used some old paper to create this travelling moon. 
you can follow its itinerary: 

This is an extremely mysterious taking-off-the-mask ritual: 

a beautiful Sunday to everyone