Sit Back with Your Christmas Holiday’s Cosiest Stories

Put up your feet and relax. You’re reading our picks for your Christmas Holiday’s cosiest stories. Here you’ll find snow leopards, traditional German recipes and feel-good films. You’ll find out about the workshops and creatives leading today’s craft revolution. We’ll also guide you through beautiful, snowy landscapes, taken by the best of today’s landscape photographers in the world’s most remote places.

       

The Day I Visited Eden
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“I like to mix things to create something new. The possibilities of combinations are endless and I think it’s a very fun game that gives liberty to all fantasies.”
- André Sanchez

Ever heard of the “Lupus Tigris Qiils Paradeisos”? How about the Equus Pirassouppi Phalacrocoracidae Nirvana”? Unless you already know the work of Paris-based illustrator and photographer André Sanchez, you most likely don’t know these unusual species. This is down to the fact that he has made them up – and visualised them in colourful, fascinating collages in his project The Day I Visited Eden.

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Saving Species
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“Honestly, I’m not really interested in the results of a project, just if the project was an immersive experience. If that happens, I find I like the work more.”
- James Gilleard

Can you name 38 different endangered species? Well, illustrator James Gilleard can help you learn with his project, Saving Species. As we discovered on earlier occasions speaking to James, his style features a blend of bright, pastel hues and glitchy aesthetics. The endangered species he illustrated are from all over the world.

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Acapulco
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“When driving from Mexico City to Acapulco, you could see people selling papayas on the road. Cut in half, they looked so red and fresh. We once stopped to buy one and we found out that it had been painted to look tastier.”
- Paloma Rincon

Put on your sunglasses and lean back: Paloma Rincon’s Acapulco sends out relaxing holiday vibes from the artist’s home country, Mexico. Having spent many of her childhood holiday seasons in the Pacific seaside hub, the Madrid-based photographer incorporated a host of personal references drawn from her fond memories, thus creating a colourful atmosphere of summer vacation.

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Icelandic River Veins
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“My work can be very abstract – seemingly somewhere between photography and painting. People are not able to decode it on first glance, and don’t realise the photo was taken from the sky. The River Veins is exactly one of those topics.”
- Tom Hegen

German designer and photographer Tom Hegen continues to stun us with his aerial photography. After catching up with him for his work on The Salt, Tom has visited Iceland for a newer series, The River Veins.

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Getting Lost
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“I believe the need to explore is a fundamental aspect of being human. I see it as a force that has been essential for human existence throughout our history.”
- Øystein Aspelund

As we’ve enjoyed in several of his previous projects, photographer Øystein Aspelund has an eye for desolate, natural landscapes. The Norwegian’s project Getting Lost focusses on the complicated relationship between nature and humans. Minimal scenes, forgotten architecture and abandoned apparatus – the images of Getting Lost show areas of Norway in all their remoteness.

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OUTSIDERS
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“They are something we don’t know, or they do not even appear in physical form; perhaps there is no ‘they’ at all. It’s for you to decide.”
- Nydia Lilian

Is there life beyond earth? It’s a question you might think by now is a little clichéd – one which immediately calls to mind popular science books, novels and sci-fi movies. But according to photographer and artist from Monterrey, Mexico, Nydia Lilian, it is not one we should dismiss. Her ongoing series OUTSIDERS marks her intervention into the field.

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BoKaap
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“Colour is my most important means of expression.”
- Elena Iv-skaya

We’re familiar with Elena Iv-skaya’s love of bold colours and beautiful women from working with her before, but her signature style has never been more apparent than in her new series: BoKaap. Clean lines, sharp contrasts, saturated hues and crisp, colour-blocked outfits make BoKaap a stunning sensory experience.

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The German Cookbook
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Germany is home to an incredibly rich, diverse culinary culture. Yet that culture is often overlooked. Alfons Schuhbeck, one of Germany’s best-known chefs, is changing that with hard evidence in the form of 500 recipes which comprise The German Cookbook, published by Phaidon.

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Signal
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“I liked drawing since I was a kid. One day though, I realised that it was limited in its expression. That’s how I became interested in animation and motion graphics.”
- Hwang Ji Lee

Memories are a sensitive part of our lives. They can be happy, sad, uplifting or dreadful. Depending on our situation, the same memory may even cause us to experience completely different emotions at different times. Visual artist Hwang Ji Lee touches on this phenomenon in his animated short film, Signal.

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Minimal Movie Posters
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“I came to the conclusion that even very bad movies – the ones I did not like – make good posters.”
- Chungkong

What would your favourite movies look like as minimalist posters? This is the question that gnawed away at Amsterdam-based designer Chungkong, prompting him to begin a marathon of movie poster design creation, entitled Minimal Movie Posters.

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Handcraft is the New Sexy: Wallpaper
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“One of my greatest inspirations is Chinese wallpaper because when England was quite a dark and sombre place, there you had these fantastic kingdoms. It’s very interesting that people would use Chinese wallpapers in very important country houses and palaces.”
Allyson McDermott

Wallpapers are something so ubiquitous that we have a tendency to forget about them in our everyday life. Allyson McDermott wants to change this mind-set. THE PLUS visited Allyson in Bath to talk about the historic past, creative present and digital future of wallpapers.

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Handcraft is the New Sexy: Ceramics
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“My vision, and it’s happening now, is that people are proud of the word ‘craft’. Lots of people are really appreciating the fact that making and creating is a mindful activity.”
- Kate Malone

Contemporary ceramicist Kate Malone works in an artistic tradition that dates back increasingly far, the more pottery fragments we track down and date. 20,000 years, at recent estimates, but it’s diversified since antiquity: Kate herself specialises in various areas, from the decorative arts, to large scale public projects, to extensive and professional glaze research.

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Handcraft is the New Sexy: Woodwork
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“Craft is not just the making of something, it’s the whole process, from designing it all the way to the point at which you finally make it. I love every bit of it, every step is equally important to me.”
- Gareth Neal

Much like English hardwoods with which he works, furniture designer Gareth Neal is a down-to-earth being enjoying a quietly flourishing career in woodwork. The London-based craftsman’s hands were destined for handicraft from an early age, and from his East-end studio we’re given a contemporary and fine-grained appreciation of the ancient practice of carpentry.

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