Lekstock (roughly translatable as “lollypop”) is the rather cheeky name for a new source of licensable Flemish illustration art. A few of the best Flemish designers and illustrators have listed their work which can be licenced for editorial or commercial work.
Currently listed are Pieter De Poortere, Randall C., Jan Van Der Veken, Dooreman, Serge Baeken, Sam De Buysscher, Stijn Felix, Gideon Kieffer and Reinhart Croon, which guarantees a quite diverse number of styles and subjects.
So, if you’re inspired by the nice things we try to offer up for you every day, you know where to go…
Every year Flemish illustrator and cartoonist Kim Duchateau makes a full-page illustration for the end-of-year edition of Knack news magazine in which he tries to fit as many allusions to the topics of the past year as possible. This year, the Nieuwsblad newspaper asked him the same thing. And so he made two.
The references may be quite local, but at least some of them will probably be familiar for all too.
Flemish cartoonist Pieter de Poortere, well known for his absurdist silent comics featuring everyone’s favorite loser Boerke (or Dickie, as he is know around the world), just opened his new online portfolio. Although it’s currently still pretty limited in terms of content, you can already get a good idea of the versatility of Pieter’s talent.
Personally, I think he’s at his best when he creates his-like illustrations for festivals and magazines, and fills them to the brim with hilarious references.
If you hadn’t heard of Pieter before, now is the time to get acquainted.
(all artwork by Pieter de Poortere)
I came across Amanda Majoor’s blog by complete accident – one of those cases of internet synchronicity, with the web hitting you with beauty when you least expect it.
Amanda’s pictures are totally lovely – they combine a sweet kind of youthful tenderness with a fluent, at times very retro line in her art. It would seem that she gets a lot of inspiration from the German interbellum, with its combination of playfulness and threat.
Barbara studied Comic Design at ArtEZ Institute of the Arts, Zwolle, the Netherlands, in 2012 and is currently accepting commissions!
A couple of months ago, we blogged about how Sarah Yu Zeebroek gave the Flemish media magazine Focus a makeover for its Festival Special. Coinciding with the Retropolis festival, which took place at the beginning of September, Focus once more commended itself into the hands of an illustrator, giving him free reign.
This time it’s clear line Wunderkind Jan van der Veken who provides Focus with an appropriate retro feel. He contributes a few illustrations, but his main change to the magazine, is the application of a very strong “make this look older” filter to everything from photographs to headers to texts.
Even Pieter de Poortere’s Boerke, which normally has a very clear colour palette, has to give in to the demure, yellowed aesthetics of Van der Veken. And it’s not even that much of a break after all.
(Illustrations © Jan van der Veken, Boerke © Pieter de Poortere)
On October 11, the Seed Factory gallery in Brussels opens its Super & Co exhibition, featuring off-beat interpretations of famous superheroes from comics and film by Belgian illustrations, cartoonists and visual artists.
Illustrator and cartoonist Serge Baeken also made a contribution, with Hellboy no less. It’s quite a remarkable piece within Serge’s oeuvre, not only because it features a pop culture character, but also because the picture is in colour. A rare feat indeed.
(illustration © Serge Baeken)
Connoisseurs of contemporary comics will no doubt associate Flemish cartoonist Maarten van de Wiele with slightly kinky, sometimes brash but never ordinary comics like I Love Paris, Doctor Carnacki or Glamourissimo, filled to the brim with sassy fashionistas and fabulous sociopets.
For an illustration in De Standaard, though, Maarten went a completely different route, with a style that wouldn’t be out of place in your average children’s book. I kinda like it, but I sure hope this will not lead to a chronical lack of sass in his work from now on.
(Illustration © Maarten van de Wiele)
There aren’t that many fields that Hermien Verstraeten isn’t active in. As Hermini, she designs felt figures, clothing and bags (for Eastpak); she works on animated spots and idents and collaborated on the amazing Brandon and the Secret of Kells. But above all, she’s a fiercely talented illustrator who likes to combine cartoonish slapstick with a stylishness that often harkens back to the sixties and seventies. She’s worked for a large array of newspapers and magazines, and has provided illustrations for books and postcards.
I very much like the bittersweet cuteness of her art, which reminds me of Mademoiselle Annette, but also of cartoonists like Andi Watson or venerable illustrator Alain Grée.
Hermini lives in Ghent, and even has a webshop that allows you to actually own one of her amazing pieces.
(all illustrations © Hermien Verstraeten)
Brussels graffiti guerillero Bue The Warrior took his craft indoors for once when he was asked to create a giant mural for hip and trendy hotel Bloom in the centre of the Belgian capital.
The mural has everything you have come to expect from a Bue piece : an orgy of color combined with semi-naive and ever so slightly disturbing characters.
Find out more about this piece, and about Bue, on the Street Art Belgium website, which you should check out on a daily basis.
For the cover of this week’s De Morgen Magazine, illustrator and graphic artist Gilles Vranckx wanted to do a portrait of US presidential candidate Mitt Romney in the style of 1950′s advertising. That proved harder than he thought – as it turned out, “It’s difficult not to make a caricature of Romney”.
Vranckx has a background in animation, and cites Ashley wood, Kent Williams, Mike Allred, Rene Gruau, Edward Hopper and old 50′-60′ advertising as his influences. He is currently working on a comic series with Canadian writer Scott Closter and on his own personal graphic novel, Girl: now that you’ve gone.
You can see more of his work on his blog. His work is also highly featured (and tagged) on Tumblr. Finally, Agenda Magazine recently visited his studio.