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SHOP Magazine called on us last month with an interesting brief: in need of an artist with soft gradients, elegance and sparkle and shine, at Machas we knew we had the perfect person for the job: illustrator Ray Oranges!
Global Blue’s SHOP Magazine is a slick city guide meets luxury fashion mag that features the best places to shop and spend in style all over the world. Each issue is published with an eye-catching cover and this month SHOP’s Belgium edition is no different! Featuring an interesting piece on the history of Belgium’s diamond industry and the jewellery designers evolving within it, the article touches on the pace of new technologies and influences of the trade from the renewed Antwerp Six.
The brief called for the incorporation of nods toward iconic Belgium’s landmarks alongside a focus on the main star and shine of the show: diamonds! Ray’s architectural background and signature use of soft gradients and dramatic shapes allowed for a harmonious blend between all elements.
An abundance of research on Belgian landmarks and culture followed by many hours spent scrubbing diamond facets and softening shadows in Illustrator, Ray’s final piece for SHOP Magazine is not only stunningly captivating, but also a true representation of the wonders of Belgium and its beautiful diamonds.
We caught up Global Blue’s lovely Picture Editor Dorcas Brown for a little chat and an insight into the selection of Ray as the ideal illustrator for the job!
Please can you share with us a little more about this months edition of Belgium SHOP Magazine?
SHOP Belgium is a luxury city guide magazine published twice a year covering the cities of Brussels, Antwerp and Bruges. For the Spring/Summer 2014 edition we featured the best high end clothes and products available in Belgium for summer 2014, the most notable local boutiques and places to visit, and features about local trends and designers. Our cover feature explores the country’s expertise for diamond production and the innovative and contemporary jewellery designers that are carrying on the tradition in new and exciting ways.
What was it that drew you to commission Ray’s work for SHOP Magazine?
We wanted a chic, shiny aesthetic for this cover - an illustrator who could work with soft gradients to achieve a sheen you would associate with diamonds. Belgium is so well known as a diamond producing country and so this is the focus on the illustration, but in addition to this we liked the diamond for its faceted appearance giving us the opportunity to play on words ‘multi-faceted’ in reference to the many innovative contemporary jewellery makers. This was our brief and our concept.
Ray has a beautiful chic and smooth finish to his work, very subtle gradients and a luxurious feel. We could see from his portfolio that he also tackles conceptual briefs well and so along with the aesthetic finish he gives to his work he became the ideal choice for the brief.