We went in search of new talent (at least to us) at the London run of Le Book's Connections 2012 show yesterday, an invite-only exhibition comprised of stands from leading illustration and photography agencies visited by art buyers and commissioners from ad agencies, brands, broadcasters and publishers.
We asked to see each agency's latest signings, and picked out our favourites below. Among the work of names familiar to regular Digital Arts readers from Noma Bar and Si Scott to Gary Fernandez and Chuck Anderson, we found a wealth of inspiring artworks from Germany, Sweden, Japan and New York – plus a innovative and beautifully executed project from a top creative studio.
Also represented by Jed Root, Don Oehl's fashion illustration has a definite nod towards Rene Gruau.
Cartoonist Jun Oson is based in Japan and works through the Visiontrack agency in Tokyo, so is respresented in the UK by sister firm Dutch Uncle (who look after the likes of Noma Bar and Tavis Coburn).
Also through Anja Wiroth are Weed and Candy, whose motion work impressed us most.
We finish up with something different. Retouch firm turned all-round creative agency Saddington Baynes was showcasing its work using an in-house developed iPad app that brings stills of its work to life. Unencumbered by the large 2D barcodes needed to drive most AR apps, the app recognises whole images and brings up 3D models, step-by-step breakdowns, videos or interactive controls.
If you want to see how it works, download the free SBook app from the iTunes Store and then point it at the pic above. Saddinton Baynes has plans to offer the app to clients, and other possible uses include adding AR to artworks in museums. We'll be interviewing the team about the project once Conncections is over.
Connections is being held until the end of today at the Royal Horiticultural Halls in central London. The next event will be in New York in June.