Michigan-based artists Dennis and Christina Jacobs make illustrations that you’ll want to walk around inside of.
Inspired by nature and the world around them, they create a sense of peace with a spark of magic in their artwork. The dreamlike mood of their screen prints is helped along by glow in the dark and metallic inks, recipes that they mix from scratch out of powdered pigments.
The narrative quality of their work has been sought out by like minded storytellers, including musicians, filmmakers, comedians, and game designers.
Each illustration begins as a digital drawing. Photos taken while exploring Michigan or traveling elsewhere are often the initial source. If the illustration is meant to be screen printed, the digital drawing is then transformed into layers of dots that can be printed one color at a time.
Arsenal Handicraft is a husband and wife team. After an idea is sketched, Dennis begins fleshing out the detailed illustration with Christina art directing along the way. Dennis handles the technical side of printmaking by doing the color separations and burning the screens. Christina chooses the colors for the prints, mixes the inks and tests out the color interactions. Finally, an edition of screen prints are pulled by hand, with one person pulling the squeegee while the other racks the prints.
Monty Python, Gallery 1988, Los Angeles, CA
Idiot Box, Gallery 1988, Los Angeles, CA
Focus Features 15th Anniversary, Gallery 1988, Los Angeles, CA
Location Location Location, Galerie F, Chicago, IL
Zelda, Hero Complex Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
Winter Cycling Celebration, REI, Bloomington, MN
When The Lights Go Out, Bottleneck Gallery, New York, NY
Artcrank Detroit, Shinola, Detroit, MI
When The Lights Go Out, Bottleneck Gallery, New York, MI
Where Is My Mind - Bottleneck Gallery, New York, NY
Product Placement, Gallery 1988, Los Angeles, CA
HCG Celebrates AMC’s The Walking Dead, Hero Complex Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
When the Lights Go Out - Bottleneck Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
I Love You Man - Bottleneck Gallery, New York, NY
More Than You Imagined, Bottleneck Gallery, New York, NY
NIGHTVISION, Con Artist Gallery, Grand Rapids, MI
Anecdoted City, Salt & Cedar, Detroit, MI
The Mad Hatter’s Tea Party, Starkweather Arts Center, Romeo, MI
After, Con Artist Gallery, Grand Rapids, MI
Reclaimed (curators), River’s Edge Gallery, Wyandotte, MI
Day of the Dead, Starkweather Arts Center, Romeo, MI
Meth & Hot Dogs 2, LIFT, Royal Oak, MI
Stand Up! Records
Detroit Urban Craft Fair in Detroit, MI
Crafty Bastards in Washington, D.C.
Indie Craft Experience in Atlanta, GA
Renegade Craft Fair in Chicago, Detroit, Brooklyn, and San Francisco
Photo credits: Alyssa Lopatin (photo 1), Zac Carr (photo 2)