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    La La Land Blog

    Interview with La La Land's in-house artist Murilo Manzini

    Interview with La La Land's in-house artist Murilo Manzini

    How would you describe your art method?
    I don't have a preference for specific media. The current result of each artwork I create is a wondrous medley of various techniques and applications, including watercolour, acrylic, digital composition, markers, and mixed media. But I need to confess that because I have been practising more with digital illustration lately, the way I compose for other media has changed. Even my colour palette has evolved since then. And I'm very excited about it.
    What or who inspires your work the most?
    I'm fascinated by the human healing process. I see genuine beauty when some vulnerable experiences are overcome and turned into awareness and strength. I'm also a spiritualist and intuitive to everything around me, and I love to be surrounded by nature, and clean spaces.
    I'm also curious about the constant cultural exchange we are involved in. For example: in some of my recent authorial projects, I have been using Australiana fauna and flora and mixing them with my tropical roots, creating a bright space for people to feel welcomed and inspired. We are all made of various and distinct references coming together as one, and this is what makes us unique.
    Which of your personal or commercial artworks is your all-time favourite and why? (Include an image I can share).
    The artist's range I did for La La Land is a composition I'm proud of. It was surreal to create a scene where all of my favourites idols were interacting in the same space. I always say I would spend a significant part of my life talking to these guys at the bar if I could.
    There's also another collaboration I did with Hew Clothing for their AW19 collection title "ECOLOGY".
    It brings more than ten pieces with my artwork on it, and its debut happened on the runway at VAMFF last March in Melbourne. 
    Also, there is a mural a did recently for Broadway Shopping in Sydney. At the end of the three days of work, it was incredible to see the same artwork I did digitally stamp on a large scale like that.
    Where is your dream destination to visit for inspiration?
    It has to be Mexico! I made a range celebrating Frida Kahlo for La La Land recently. And when I was searching some references to compose the scenario for the illustration, I found an explosion of colours and patterns in the pictures. For sure, it is a must go.
    5. How did you come to work at La La Land?
    About a year ago I had the opportunity to send one of my artworks named Blooming to the person responsible for curation at La La Land. They decided to give a try to create a greeting card with that artwork. After a few months, they reached me to develop something to a brief. I made some options and picked up my portfolio and went there to present them. After a few adjustments, I was invited to become one of the in-house artist  which I have been doing since then lovingly.
    Do you think your background contributes to your art in any way? 
    I believe that every experience we have in life counts to the now. To work as a graphic designer in Brazil helped me a lot as well with my work for La La Land, especially in regards to packaging and finishing files. I'm also curious about techniques and media. So if I see something that instigates me, I'll give it a try.
    How do you manage the process differences between creating art and working to a brief? For yourself/someone else?
    Because I have a background in graphic design working for agencies in Brazil, I consider myself quite flexible when I'm creating for someone else. 
    I understand that I can bring some ideas but at the end of the day I believe it is a combinations of your work and being at the same page with the client.
    However, when I'm creating my original work or commissioned work, I like to follow my artist signature and to respect my current boundaries. If someone asks me to add something that I believe won't be an excellent fit for the artwork I will try to show them some alternatives. 
    The main goal is to find balance when I'm creating something.
     
    What do you get up to in your free time? Other interests/passions?
    First of all, art exhibitions! I love to spend hours walking through the silent corridors of museums and also to interact with other people's arts.
    Secondly, it's nature. To walk by the beach or some park and to sit there quietly doing nothing. 
    And, of course, family. I love to spend a considerable amount of time with those I enjoy cooking, watching tv,  gardening, and taking care of the place. I think I learn with my mom that a happy house is a tidy house. So, I'm always taking care of the place I'm living in as well.
    Who is your favourite La La Land artist and why? 
    My favourite La La Land artist is my partner at work Lilly Perrott (with all respect to the others of course). 
    I really enjoy spending time with her sharing knowledge and getting references for future projects. She is a real young talent, and I'm sure we all will hear a lot about her in the future. Mark this name Australia.

    5 Ways To Make A Positive Change This Earth Day

    5 Ways To Make A Positive Change This Earth Day

    We live in a beautiful, unique world that is very much under threat by climate change and the impact of mankind. There's a lot of pressure on society today to make a meaningful change that will help make a difference. Although the idea of the weight of the world is growing heavy on our shoulders and at times may seem overwhelming, we want to let you know that there are several EASY changes you can make as an individual that will go a long way. 

    SHOP SMARTER

    Pick up a strong, sturdy shopping bag that will fit all your groceries as an alternative to single-use plastic bags at the shops. You can also avoid those single plastic bags in the fruit & veg section and bring your own sustainable mini bags if you like to compartmentalise. The average reusable bag has a lifespan equal to that of more than 700 disposable plastic bags. One person using reusable bags over their lifetime would remove more than 22,000 plastic bags from the environment 
    WALK OR RIDE YOUR BIKE
    If you can swap jumping in the car and driving to school or work for simply walking or cycling on your bike then give it a go! Cars are responsible for roughly half of all transport emissions. Collectively, Australian cars emit roughly the same per year as Queensland's entire coal and gas-fired electricity supply. Despite these pledges to tackle climate change, Australia's emissions continue to rise, particularly from the transport sector.  B.Y.O.C. (BRING YOUR OWN CUP!)
    If you're not making your own tea and coffee at home or the office and you need that caffeine fix, bring your own coffee cup to the cafe. All it requires is a second of forethought before you leave to go purchase one. Over a year, the use of reusable coffee cup reduces greenhouse gas emissions by up to 92% compared to disposable cups. It is estimated Australians use 1 billion disposable coffee cups each year which is approximately 2,700,000 paper coffee cups are thrown out every day! 

     

    CREATE A COMPOST

    Whether it's in your house or in your office, everyone creates food waste and it can be converted into valuable compost that can feed the plants and soil around you, causing them to thrive and attract beneficial insects like bees, butterflies and ladybugs. Besides, a greener planet is a happier planet. Before starting have a quick read up on what can and cannot go into your compost and within a month you could be feeding your plants and garden some serious rocket fuel that will boost their growth whilst reducing methane emissions from landfills and lowering your carbon footprint. 

    POWER DOWN
    In this modern age, we rely on technology and electricity A LOT! It's pretty crazy to think that simply boiling the kettle at home can use precious natural resources that are farmed right from our own earth which we will eventually run out of. By being aware and trying to be energy efficient you can help cut down on your need for electricity and rely less on carbon-intensive power plants. This reduces your home’s demand from the plant, which in turn benefits the environment by reducing their carbon dioxide emissions. Simple things like; turning the lights off when you're not in the room, setting your laptop to sleep mode after 20 minutes of being out of use, and turning powerpoints off at the switch can help make a difference and save you on your energy bill.

      Healthy, Fun and Yum!         How To Make Rainbow Popsicles.

      Healthy, Fun and Yum! How To Make Rainbow Popsicles.

      We all love to celebrate Australian Summer with our favourite nostalgic ice-creams including rainbow paddle pops, Gaytime, Splice and Bubble O Bill.

      The colours and flavours of Summer are packed with sugar and colouring that we don't always want to give to our kids.

      So here's a recipe thanks to The First Year Blog which is inspired by the icy rainbow swirls of Summer paddle pops.

      Now you can make your own guilt free and flavour packed.

      Ingredients:

      RED LAYER

      • 1 frozen banana
      • 1/2 cup greek yogurt, vanilla or plain
      • 1/2 cup frozen raspberries
      • 1/2 cup frozen strawberries
      • water or liquid for blending

      ORANGE LAYER

      • 1 frozen banana
      • 1/2 cup greek yogurt, vanilla or plain
      • 1/2 cup frozen peaches
      • 1 small orange
      • 1/4 cup frozen mango
      • water or liquid for blending

      YELLOW LAYER

      • 2 frozen bananas
      • 1/2 cup greek yogurt, vanilla or plain
      • 1 cup frozen pineapple
      • water or liquid for blending

      GREEN LAYER

      • 2 frozen bananas
      • 1/2 cup greek yogurt, vanilla or plain
      • 1 handful (or more) spinach
      • 1 cup frozen pineapple
      • water or liquid for blending

      BLUE LAYER

      • 2 frozen bananas
      • 1/2 cup greek yogurt, vanilla or plain
      • 1 cup frozen pineapple
      • small amount of blue food coloring
      • water or liquid for blending

      PURPLE LAYER

      • 1 frozen banana
      • 1/2 cup greek yogurt, vanilla or plain
      • 1 cup frozen mixed berries
      • water or liquid for blending

      MAGENTA LAYER

      • 1 frozen banana
      • 1/2 cup greek yogurt, vanilla or plain
      • 1/2 cup sliced canned beets
      • 1 cup frozen strawberries or raspberries

      Directions:

      FOR EACH SMOOTHIE

      1. Place all the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Add more liquid to help it blend if it's too thick.
      2. Transfer the smoothie to a bowl or container, rinse the blender and prep the next smoothie.

      TO ASSEMBLE THE RAINBOW POPSICLES

      1. Carefully layer each colour smoothie in a popsicle mould in rainbow order.
      2. Layering the smoothies in the mould is easy. Use a spoon or tablespoon to scoop the smoothie mixture into the mould. It’s natural for the layers to blend a bit, but I have noticed that spooning the smoothies into the mould versus pouring the smoothie in from a glass leaves better results.
      3. Once the moulds are filled, add the sticks and freeze the popsicles overnight.

      Celebrate Australian Summer with your kids, keeping it cool, fun and yum!

       

       

      How to build your creative career

      How to build your creative career

      INTERVIEW WITH ELIE AZZI
      LA LA LAND’S CO-FOUNDER & CREATIVE DIRECTOR
      We asked the co-founder and creative director of La La Land, Elie Azzi, a few questions about what inspires him to come up with some of La La Land's best selling concepts. This is in lead up to a talk he is giving on the 26th of November at the Grounds in Sydney.
      Do you personally like every artwork, or do you have to produce artworks for markets/people that have different taste and needs to your personal? If so what are the challenges?
      I love all the artworks we produce and I would buy them all however a lot may not be suited to my personal style. In the gift industry, we have to think about both our customer and the end user (the recipient of the gift). In this perspective we have to always think about our customers while we choose themes and styles that would make the recipient happy.
      How do you decide which brief to give to which artist when you have so many to choose from?
      Some artists are happy to work with a brief others are not. I then look at if the brief will suit the personal style of the artist. I also have to think of timing. Some artists are busier than others. We also have two full time in-house artists, Lilly Perrot and Murillo Manzini who take on big briefs. Collectively working in a creative environment allows us to brainstorm and develop strong concepts. Ludivine Chu, my business partner also plays a big role in the creative as she manages the product development and has a great eye for detail.
      How often do you analyse your sales and how does this affect future development?
      I'm always looking at sales because that is the biggest determinant as to what is working and what isn't. What people love and what they don't. When we know a formula works we sometimes try to grow it and work on it but in a different light.
      Where do you get your inspiration from for new artwork?
      As cliche as it sounds, my inspiration comes from everything around me. At the moment it's fashion and history.
      How / where do you source new artists, or do they come to you?
      A lot of new artists submit their artworks via our website however I'm always on the prowl for new artists. It is a balance between talent, style and concepts. If I find an artist that has a style that we don't currently cover or her/his concepts are very unique, then I would be interested in publishing them. I come across so many amazing artists that are so talented but they paint subjects that we have already done or their subjects are just not suitable for our brand. How do you take an artwork and make it commercial.
      What is your process/thoughts? Share an example or two.
      It comes down to finding a concept that people would love. A concept that is relevant and/or beautiful and/or funny. For example, I noticed a lot of the old painting styles, the regal look of renaissance paintings trending. I became more and more fascinated by them and I wanted to explore the dark hues and detailed painting style. To be able to do this successfully I had to use a concept that would be popular and what better than pop stars? So this is how I came to do 'Music Royalty' when Michael Jackson, David Bowie, Prince and Queen were represented in the renaissance paintings style. I was in a grocery store when it came to me that all four men are represented as royal figures which I think is funny. When I tried to think of a female version I failed. Not everyone can agree who the queen of pop is. Is it Beyonce or Madonna?
      Do you work with personal sketches, mood boards, Pinterest or other?
      I use Pinterest a lot to collect my thoughts, my mood boards are often digital. I then create creative briefs on in-design. Some could be very detailed, others are not. It depends on the artist and the concept. Who is your main inspiration? At the moment one of my biggest inspirations is Alessandro Michele, the creative director of Gucci. I'm currently obsessed with him. Other days it could be a rapper, an artist or a historical figure. My inspiration is always changing.
      How do you balance between creative workflow and the runnings and management of a successful business?
      I couldn't do anything without my business partner Ludi and the team at La La Land. We are so fortunate to have the best team whom are passionate about the brand.
      What is your main creative goal?
      To make everyday living for our customers more creative, beautiful, unique, fun and fashionable. We want our products to help people feel good, to meet the purpose of the brand, and that is to inspire happiness and creativity.
      Can you share sneak peeks of what we can expect to come in 2019 for Elie and La La Land.
      Expect artworks that reflect women empowerment, lots of roses, European romance, Mexico and of course more Australiana.
      COME AND LISTEN TO ELIE AZZI
      ORGANISED BY GENERAL ASSEMBLY AT THE GROUNDS
      HOW TO BUILD YOUR CREATIVE CAREER
      $15 Mon 26th Nov 6:30pm-8pm
      The Grounds Of Sydney Shop RG 12, 500 George St Sydney
      BOOK YOUR TICKET HERE

      TREAT YOUR MUM - SPICED PEAR LOAF RECIPE BY REBECCA MORGAN JONES

      TREAT YOUR MUM - SPICED PEAR LOAF RECIPE BY REBECCA MORGAN JONES

      The perfect gift is a combination of thoughtfulness, something for keeps, and an experience to remember. Here's how to do it all in one.

      We all know all a mum ever wants is time spent together (brekkie in bed), as well as effort and thoughtfulness (baking a loaf) and of course a gift! (La La Land's range of illustrated ceramic plates and mugs).

      Here is the perfect recipe to make your mum's day!

      Rebecca Morgan Jones 

      Gluten free baker & recipe developer from the Central Coast, NSW.

      Spiced Pear Loaf Recipe

       (gluten free)

      Ingredients 

      2 cups gluten free self raising flour

      ¾ cup buckwheat flour

      ¼ cup coconut flour

      ½ cup raw sugar or rapidura 

      1 teaspoon cinnamon  

      ½ teaspoon ginger

      1 teaspoon baking powder 

      ½ teaspoon baking soda

      1 ripe banana 

      3 eggs

      1 teaspoon vanilla

      ¾ cup coconut milk

      ¾ cup coconut oil (melted)

      Zest of 1 orange

      3 small ripe pears  

      1 teaspoon cinnamon & 1 ½ teaspoons raw sugar (optional topping)

      Method

      Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Grease and line a large loaf tin.

      In a medium sized mixing bowl combine all dry ingredients thoroughly.

      Meanwhile, using a food processor or similar, blitz banana, eggs, milk, oil

       and  Vanilla. Incorporate dry & wet ingredients and zest to form a smooth bat

      ter. De core and finely slice pears, adding 2 of them to the batter, saving

      the other 1 for the topping. Pour the batter into prepared loaf tin & decorate the top with remaining  pear slices.

      Sprinkle over cinnamon sugar (if desired) and bake in oven for 1-1 ½ hours or until a skewer comes out

      Clean when inserted.

      Cool in tin before turning out & cutting into inch thick

      slices.

      Keeps up to 5 days in fridge or 2 weeks in freezer.

      To get more delicious gluten free recipes follow 

      @becmorganjones 

      Profile pic by @ Jackielyn Powell