Steve Powers has Magic Powers

Last weekend, I traveled to Philadelphia for a friend’s wedding. Besides tackling the obvious Philly sights (read carbs, carbs, and more carbs!), I knew my most important mission was to make it to West Philadelphia to see the A Love Letter For You project. Commissioned by the Mural Arts Program, Steve Powers and his crew created over 50 murals that can be seen while traveling on the Market-Frankford Elevated line. Read in order, they tell a love story to the city.

My admiration for Steve Powers started about two years ago when I pinned this mural to my inspiration board. After learning more about his awesome publicly sponsored arts project, I read up on Steve’s other pieces around New York, and swooned even harder. Then, last month I finally gave in to my Netflix recommendations and watched Beautiful Losers, only to happily discover that Mr. Powers (aka ESPO) was one of the documentary’s featured artists. It was meant to be!

After a weekend of eating too much and an epic wedding celebration, I finally worked my way over to the Fresh Prince’s OG hood and began my journey up Market Street. Visiting West Philly was unreal. These absolutely stunning murals contrasted with the desolate and dismal neighborhood scenery, and friendly smiles from locals were few and far between. However, I’ve always believed that “everything you want is just outside your comfort zone,” so I’m happy I explored and captured these moments along the way. By far my favorite Philly memory.

A Love Letter For You book sold here.

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Latest illustrator love: Christopher David Ryan

Have you ever had one of those “a-ha moments” where you realize that one brilliant artist is behind a few of your favorite pieces? Such is the case with Christopher David Ryan. Bekka first introduced me to his work last year, and I’ve been pinning him (unknowingly!) since. Clearly, I’m in to his Feeling series, but there is lots more to love in his shop. One of each please?

Images (clockwise): 1, 2, 3, 4

Extra Sensory

Last weekend, I got the chance to check out Mike Maxwell’s latest works of art at Subtext Gallery. I’ve seen some of his art before, as mentioned here, and also as a commission for the Scripps Building downtown, but I really enjoyed browsing the pieces at this show. His work has gotten a bit more risky and a lot more intricate. I loved the themes throughout, like multiple eyes and unruly facial hair (woo-hoo), and the way the paintings asked you to sense with your mind, not your physical senses. Definitely go check out Extra Sensory while it’s still up, it’ll blow your mind.

I took these photos at the show and then used my new favorite app, Diptic, to put ‘em all together.