Last night, I had the pleasure of listening to Marian Bantjes promote her newly released book titled I Wonder. In an almost comical statement, she said that she could hardly describe exactly what this work is about in less than two minutes. I agree.
For a bit of background, Marian Bantjes is an artist/graphic designer/illustrator/writer. She dropped out of art school and began working at a printer where she developed a love of type and typography. After a 10 year career there, she and a friend started a business together. They worked together for quite some time and Ms. Bantjes eventually realized that it was not what she wanted to do. She gave her portion of the company to her friend and after four years, she discovered what it was that she wanted to do.
If you have ever seen her work, it is meticulously detailed with lots of subtle repetition and careful placement. She is inspired by illuminated texts, religious ornamentation, heraldry and more. I discovered her like a child discovers an artist from days past. Without knowing who she is, you might have seen her work. She has graced the covers of several magazines and even designed materials for Nieman Marcus. Surprisingly, she works with many American and international companies despite the fact that she is from—and lives—in Canada.
For more information about Marian, visit her website. She explains more about herself and her influences/inspiration/history/you name it. You can look at all of her beautifully executed pieces and maybe buy I Wonder so you can sit down and read through it (I thoroughly enjoyed it to be honest).
Image of Marian Bantjes via Computer Arts