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John Molesworth’s vivacious artworks hit you in the eyes like “a wild, visual guitar solo”

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Arabellasimpson-illustration-it'snicethat-09 Work / Illustration Arabella Simpson’s colourful drawings fit together like a distorted Tetris game

Arabella Simpson’s colourful drawings fit together like a distorted Tetris game. Fascinated by “recycling, originality and copyright”, Arabella enjoys drawing immediately recognisable characters. “I want an image to communicate its meaning instantly”, she tells It’s Nice That. By using our eyes first, she feels that we then have time to “choose how we’d like to use our heads and voices”.

Its-nice-that-al_hirschfeld_list Features / Illustration The Line King: A profile of Al Hirschfeld, on the prolific characterist’s 115th birthday

Sitting in an old barber’s chair, on the fourth floor studio of his townhouse on East 95th Street, New York, caricaturist Al Hirschfeld does with a quill and ink what a barber would do with scissors and a comb. Leaning over a drafting table, he first looks over his sketches; pages cluttered with frantic-looking marks. On a new piece of paper, he begins to draw. Streamlining chaos into clarity, he snips away the inessential, leaving just a few lines. The result? Marilyn Monroe. Charlie Chaplin. Ella Fitzgerald. Arnold Schwarzenegger. Orson Welles. Whoopi Goldberg. Luciano Pavarotti. Nat King Cole. Barbra Streisand. Sometimes all at once. With just a quill and some black ink, Al Hirschfeld brought to life some of entertainment’s most colourful characters. Over a career that lasted eight decades, Hirschfeld is said to have chronicled countless 20th century Broadway and Hollywood personalities for print and press. In 1956, he was the first to draw a caricature of Elvis Presley; to be “Hirschfelded” was a sign that you’d made it. His work has covered Playbill programs, film posters and advertisements, magazines like TIME and Life, newspapers (most notably The New York Times), albums for Aerosmith, and postage stamps for the US Postal Service. Almost every museum in the world has a Hirschfeld – such is the American artist’s ubiquity. He was even made the subject of his own Academy Award-nominated documentary film, ‘The Line King’. In 2003, Hirschfeld passed away, just a few months short of his 100th birthday. He worked for the likes of The New York Times right up until the day of his death. But he left an unparalleled legacy; an ineradicable mark on American theatre history, illustration and cartooning. So today, on what would have been Hirschfeld’s 115th birthday, we look back at the life and work of the affectionately dubbed, ‘Line King.’

Charlottetrounce-japan-illustration-itsnicethat-list Work / Illustration Catching up with Charlotte Trounce while on a residency in Japan

It will be no news to regulars readers that we have a bit of an illustration crush on Charlotte Trounce. The London-based illustrator has a knack for drawing pretty much anything — exhibition artworks, fashion collections or objects for children’s books — so we’ve regularly got an eye on what she’s illustrating. It was during one of these snooping sessions over on Charlotte’s Instagram that we noticed she currently isn’t in London, but on an envious trip to Japan.

Gracemiceli-illustration-it'snicethat-16 Work / Illustration Grace Miceli’s bold and playful illustrations re-interpret brands in humorous ways

Grace Miceli developed her signature bold and playful style once she’d left Goldsmiths university. Wanting to “get over the expectation of what type of art [she] should be making and instead connect to a more genuine expression of self”, Grace’s child-like illustrations embrace a candid messiness and inaccuracy, which she feels is more true to her.

Arabellasimpson-illustration-it'snicethat-09 Work / Illustration Arabella Simpson’s colourful drawings fit together like a distorted Tetris game

Arabella Simpson’s colourful drawings fit together like a distorted Tetris game. Fascinated by “recycling, originality and copyright”, Arabella enjoys drawing immediately recognisable characters. “I want an image to communicate its meaning instantly”, she tells It’s Nice That. By using our eyes first, she feels that we then have time to “choose how we’d like to use our heads and voices”.

List-img Work / Art Strip clubs and bordellos: Tal R’s hypnotic paintings of sex shops from around the world

“For 10 years I tried to escape art. I thought I was no good at it. I thought it was pretentious,” Tal R admits during a phone call with It’s Nice That; “I tried to give up on art but art didn’t give up on me.” From London’s Victoria Miro gallery to Copenhagen’s Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Tal R’s artworks have toured the globe. Sexshop is Tal’s long-term project, which saw the painter visit strip clubs and bordellos across the world, transforming their facades into an emulsion of mesmerising shapes and rich colours.

Timothyschaumberg-cactus-photography-itsnicetthat-1list Work / Photography Photographer Timothy Schaumburg takes us behind the scenes of plastic surgery prep

Last year, 17.5 million Americans underwent plastic surgery. The most popular procedures were breast augmentation, liposuction and nose reshaping. With lunchtime facelifts and cosmetic surgery loyalty schemes, it’s no surprise that the number of people going under the knife to “improve” their physical appearance has been steadily on the rise for some time.

Its-nice-that-al_hirschfeld_list Features / Illustration The Line King: A profile of Al Hirschfeld, on the prolific characterist’s 115th birthday

Sitting in an old barber’s chair, on the fourth floor studio of his townhouse on East 95th Street, New York, caricaturist Al Hirschfeld does with a quill and ink what a barber would do with scissors and a comb. Leaning over a drafting table, he first looks over his sketches; pages cluttered with frantic-looking marks. On a new piece of paper, he begins to draw. Streamlining chaos into clarity, he snips away the inessential, leaving just a few lines. The result? Marilyn Monroe. Charlie Chaplin. Ella Fitzgerald. Arnold Schwarzenegger. Orson Welles. Whoopi Goldberg. Luciano Pavarotti. Nat King Cole. Barbra Streisand. Sometimes all at once. With just a quill and some black ink, Al Hirschfeld brought to life some of entertainment’s most colourful characters. Over a career that lasted eight decades, Hirschfeld is said to have chronicled countless 20th century Broadway and Hollywood personalities for print and press. In 1956, he was the first to draw a caricature of Elvis Presley; to be “Hirschfelded” was a sign that you’d made it. His work has covered Playbill programs, film posters and advertisements, magazines like TIME and Life, newspapers (most notably The New York Times), albums for Aerosmith, and postage stamps for the US Postal Service. Almost every museum in the world has a Hirschfeld – such is the American artist’s ubiquity. He was even made the subject of his own Academy Award-nominated documentary film, ‘The Line King’. In 2003, Hirschfeld passed away, just a few months short of his 100th birthday. He worked for the likes of The New York Times right up until the day of his death. But he left an unparalleled legacy; an ineradicable mark on American theatre history, illustration and cartooning. So today, on what would have been Hirschfeld’s 115th birthday, we look back at the life and work of the affectionately dubbed, ‘Line King.’

100clubstories-dittopress-publication-itsnicethat-list Work / Publication Ditto publish 100 Club Stories in celebration of the iconic London venue

The 100 Club, tucked away in a doorway nestled between the high street shops on Oxford Street, London, is a venue in which many have had the best nights of their lives. This is something that applies to both tightly packed crowds and bands who have graced its stage. Getting tickets to a gig is an honour as it’s capacity is small, and if you’re lucky enough to be invited to play the honour is even greater. In celebration of the venue, Ditto has published a book displaying its history, character and anecdotes of its 75-year history.

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