Weekly Inspiration: Visual Overload in Rome.

Hello! This is a weekly feature where I share my photos with you. I carry my camera everywhere, and I constantly take pictures of things that excite me. Prepare to see lots of colours and patterns through my lens.

I spent last week on holiday in Rome. There was so, so much to see! It was an overwhelming bombardment of colours and patterns and forms, a total visual feast. As expected, my camera shutter finger was on rapid-fire mode , and I came home with many reminders of the beautiful things I’d seen. Most of the photos below were taken in the streets of Rome, or the Vatican Museums and St. Peter’s Basilica. As usual, I’ve focused on small details that caught my eye, so don’t expect a tour guide to Rome and the Vatican!
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Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour-rome-12Above: Tapestries and frescoes in the Vatican Museums. The ornate ceilings are just…off the charts. If I had to paint something while lying on my back, I’d just end up with a splattered face. The mosaics also blow my mind, with their luminous colours and level of intricacy. I was seriously impressed.

Below: A few impressions of St. Peter’s Basilica. My boyfriend made me climb up the (several hundred) stairs to get a view from the top. It was incredible, but it was also very hot and I may or may not have done a lot of whining. Anyway, to the point: Wow. When I see things like this, I think ‘damn! Humans are awesome!’ (And, yes, I do see the irony in using the word ‘damn’ to express my feelings about a church.) Continue reading

Wedding Illustrations: Cities of lurrrve!

OK, so, here’s the truth: Some illustration projects are more fun than others. This one was definitely one of my favourites, and I’ve been dying to show it to you!

I created a series of ten framed drawings for the wedding of Tom and Sophie, one for each table at the reception. The couple asked me to draw the cities that they have visited together, including where they got engaged, where they live, and where they where they went to university. They sent me a list of things they did in each city (mainly revolving around drinking, ahem!) so that I could incorporate them into my illustrations. I love projects where I can add lots of tiny details and personal touches, so this was right up my street.

Helena-Maratheftis-wedding-numbers-small-1bNo. 1 Tom asked Sophie to marry him in art deco bar in Sofia, Bulgaria. (She said yes.)
Helena-Maratheftis-wedding-numbers-small-2No. 2 Living and studying in London, England (hence the fruit flies and microscopes).

Helena-Maratheftis-wedding-numbers-small-3No. 3 Sophie and Tom went on a train trip around Europe, which involved ‘flat bums and lots of queues’.
Helena-Maratheftis-wedding-numbers-small-4bNo. 4 NYC, USA! A holiday involving lots and lots and lots of shopping and sightseeing!Helena-Maratheftis-wedding-numbers-small-5 No. 5 Oxford, England. Studying, punting, and drinking, drinking, drinking.Helena-Maratheftis-wedding-numbers-small-6No. 6 A holiday in Tokyo, with ‘lots of temples and sushi’Helena-Maratheftis-wedding-numbers-small-7 No. 7 A trip to Berlin, where Sophie and Tom drank cocktails by the river in Traditional German Beach Chairs.Helena-Maratheftis-wedding-numbers-small-8No. 8 Barcelona, Spain. Swimming, beaches and Gaudi!

Helena-Maratheftis-table-numbers-collageSophie and Tom wanted to decorate the wedding venue very simply, with floral bouquets and my illustrations giving colour to the room. The colour scheme for the wedding was apple green, orange, and berry pinks – I was so happy that my drawings perfectly matched the floral arrangements on the tables, as you can see below!

Helena-Maratheftis-wedding-numbers-small-bloomsAfter the wedding, Tom and Sophie told me that they’re planning to hang the illustrations in their living room, to remind them of their wedding day. What a sweet, lovely idea! I’m so pleased that they were happy with my work.

Congratulations, Tom & Sophie!

Weekly Inspiration: Exploring art (and cake) in beautiful Vienna.

Hello! This is a weekly feature where I share my photos with you. I carry my camera everywhere, and I constantly take pictures of things that excite me. Prepare to see lots of colours and patterns through my lens.

I’ve always wanted to visit Vienna. I blame (or rather, thank) my high school art teachers who raised me on a diet of  Hundertwasser and Klimt and Schiele, all Viennese artists. Of course, Vienna is known as much for its cakes as it is for its art, so it’s doubly surprising that it took me so long to make my pilgrimage. However, I finally made it! I spent four glorious days in Vienna last week, and I’ve got the photographic evidence to prove it! I’ve left out the standard tourist shots of St. Stephen’s Cathedral and instead am presenting a Thefty-eye-view of the city. I hope you enjoy it.

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Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour23-02St. Stephen’s Cathedral is pretty fantastic. By night, it was illuminated in rainbow colours. By day, the incredible tile work looked beautiful in the sun. My friend, referring to the stripy bits, said,  ‘That looks like the sort of cathedral you’d design.’

Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour23-04The golden orb on top of the Secession building is basically a beacon for magpies like me. We went inside to view the mural by Klimt, and it did not disappoint.

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Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour23-06Afterwards, we decided to check out the contemporary version of Vienna, which involved a visit to the Museum of Modern Art (MUMOK).  This was followed by a sunbathing session on huge, neon loungers in the museum’s public courtyard. Well played, Vienna.

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Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour23-10Later on, we did some cake-perving. Naturally, this culminated in an afternoon coffee and cake session at the famous Sacher Hotel. Yes, we had Sachertorte. Yes, it was good (but admittedly not my favourite treat of the trip. So shoot me!).

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Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour23-11The highlight of my trip (apart from cake) was visiting the Hundertwasser Museum. I thought my obsession with his work had peaked in my late teens, but after fighting back tears the whole time I was at the museum, I concluded that Hundertwasser’s work still speaks to me. (I also concluded that I am the world’s biggest crier.)

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Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour23-13Photography was prohibited inside the exhibition, so I could only photograph the (very striking) interior of the building. Colours and patterns, ahoy!

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Hundertwasser believed in’ diversity over monotony, for romanticism, for the organic and for unregimented irregularity, for spontaneous vegetation and for a life in harmony with nature’…all concepts which I can happily get behind.

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Weekly Inspiration: Fruit, flowers and feet…in Cyprus!

Hello! This is a weekly feature where I share my photos with you. I carry my camera everywhere, and I constantly take pictures of things that excite me. Prepare to see lots of colours and patterns through my lens.

I spent the first two weeks of May in Cyprus, and I had a pretty rosy time: We visited the mountain village of Agros, which is famous for it’s fragrant Damask rose plantations. I’d always wanted to go but somehow always missed rose blooming season. We visited the rose water distillery, where there were huge piles of pink roses with a smell sweet enough to knock you out! I came home with a bottle of rose liqueur and a bellyful of rose sorbet (my childhood favourite). Below are a few of the most colourful photos from my trip.

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Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour22-11Above: Jacaranda petals and geometric markings. So much colour!

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Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour22-09Bare toes and bougainvillea petals. Oh man, I miss the Mediterranean summer.

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Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour22-06The next few photos are from the local fruit market, selling fresh fruit, veg, cured meats and flowers.

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Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour22-01Below: A few quick snaps from a wedding I attended. I couldn’t resist those colourful legs!
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Have you ever visited Cyprus? It’s a very small but very beautiful island, and on grey London days I dream of its pristine beaches and blue skies. I love it there.

Weekly Inspiration: The Australian Edition.

Hello! This is a weekly feature where I share my photos with you. I carry my camera everywhere, and I’m always taking pictures of things that inspire me. Prepare to see lots of colours, patterns and good times through my lens!

As you may have noticed, I recently went AWOL for a few weeks. That’s because I was in Sydney, Australia! Here are a few of my favourite photos from the trip. Keep in mind that this is by no means a complete tourist’s guide! It’s just a set of my  most colourful shots!

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Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour-AUSTRALIA-22Coogee Beach on a scorching day

Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour-AUSTRALIA-13A very Aussie scene at Cronulla Beach

Helena-Maratheftis-weekincolour-AUSTRALIA-10Long Beach on the South Coast

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