My art was a delightful escape when I was a child. Creating pictures allowed me to create a new place, an alternative world, in addition to my regular life. It was so much fun that I got hooked early on. Over the years, if you go back to that place enough, if you revisit the feeling of it as well as consistently making art while there, it becomes more and more familiar. Things start to make sense, mostly because you begin to have a history, a residue of art trailing behind you. The more work that piles up in your wake, the better you are able to grasp where you/your art are heading.
If you keep going at it long enough, your work not only becomes better known to you, it also does to everyone else as well. Overtime, the work just seems to fit perfectly within and without the artist. And sometimes it is even hard to think of one without the other, because the art and the artist have become one. This is somewhat rare but always lovely to experience.
My dear friend, Noah Woods – artist, teacher, writer and illustrator – has accomplished such a feat. Noah’s imagery is created with a combination of hand painting, collage, typography, drawing and digital imagery. His work ranges from illustrations for children’s books, editorial and corporate clients as well as a never-ending stream of more personal fine art pieces. All of it walks the delicate line of being on the one hand, childlike, and on the other, supremely refined and sophisticated. Noah has grown up but unlike most everybody else, he somehow has managed to keep his childlike charm – a playful, don’t take yourself too seriously feeling – intact which translates seamlessly into his beautiful work.
I often think if I could be a child again, but knowing what I know now, if I somehow could combine these two worlds, it would be heavenly. Noah gives us a glimpse of this, what it might feel like to achieve this unlikely reality.
His pictures invite us into an entirely brand new world which makes us laugh, makes us ponder his amazing distillation of life into just the parts, that when placed together are at once familiar but also incredibly poignant. His highest skill set however, is his editing; there is an intelligence around what Noah leaves out that is most impressive. He has pared down his pictures to just what is needed. As a result he shows us a world that is still vibrant, crystal clear, inviting and just plain wonderful. I want to stay in every world he creates, to wander through his gardens of amazing plants, all arranged with perfection. Not to mention the bugs, the animals and all his people – I want to go on vacation with all of them.
Take a visual stroll at his website to see the full range of this gifted artist. Rumor has it that Noah is hard at work with yet another amazing book – although this one he says is going to be entirely different than the previous one…I can’t wait.
Also as a special treat, next Thursday we will be randomly choosing from the comments posted below on this piece. A lucky individual who will receive a personally signed copy of Noah’s award winning children’s book “Tom Cat.”
By the way, feel to ask Noah any questions if needed on this blog and I am sure he will answer them…
Hope your Thursday is turning out to be a good one.
Kind regards, Nicholas