Benjamín Lacombe is an illustrator who has born on 12th July 1982 in Paris where he is living and working currently.
I think that his illustrations are very sweets, but elegants at the same time. They transmit fragility and melancholy.
At 2001 he joined to the Decorative Art National School and in his 19 he published his first comic.
At 2007 Benjamin was converted in a young celebrity in the editorial world due to the nomination of the important magazine Timeque which put Cherry and Olive inside of the 10 best books for children of that year.
Since that moment, it wrote and illustrated a lot of books which were about different topics as: infancy, melancholy and the difference. To do it, he has used some techniques as gouache, pencil and pencil sketch, watercolor and oil paint.
Between its inspiration sources, you can find Pre-Raphaelite, Italian Quattrocento, primitive Flemish, and contemporary artists as: Tod Broning and its “monster” world, Tim Burton, Fritz Lang and its film “Metropolis”, Ray Harryhausen, David LaChapelle or Diane Arbus. His personal and social environment are also a part of his inspiration.
Even the most part of the Lacombe productions are near of young sector, he has also published illustrated books for adults including a new version of “Macabre Tales” of Edgar Allan Poe, and also with the story of “Notre-Dame of Paris” with all the text of Victor Hugo.
Currently I have some books which his illustrations: Snow White, Ondina, The Herbarium of the Fairies, The Silence Girl, The Buttlerfly Lovers, Macabre Tales…
She is my favourite artist because I think that she is incredible because it is able to do a lot of things in a perfect way: she is violinist, singer-songwriter, writes novels and poems and plays harpsichord.
Her music goes from victorian industrial to classical music, crossing other styles like dark cabaret and medieval and fantasy songs.
Photo from EA for Opheliac album
She has four studio albums (“Enchant”, “Opheliac”, “Laced/Unlaced” and “Fight like a girl”), a recopilatory album (“A bit o’ this & that”) and some EP’s and singles.
Also she has done some contributions to other artists and some soundtracks.
An anecdote which was so curious for me was that she had a conflict when she was a child about eat or not eat meat because she couldn’t understand why it was possible to eat animals from a farm but not pets and that is the reason why she is vegan.
Emilie Autumn, Enchant Album
One of the most important moments in her life, the most impact for me and know for her fans, was that she was raped when she was young and she is marked by it but she does not talk about it usually (but there are songs that talk about it like “I Want My Innocence Back”). She is a great defender of the women rights and it is possible to find references to this point in songs like “Fight like a girl”. Also she has denounced the pederasty in the song “Gothic Lolita”.
I identify with her in some points because she has some psychiatric problems (she is bipolar, has insomnia and sound hallucinations) and she has tried to commit suicide, but she has gotten over and that is one of the reasons why I admire her. She talk about it a lot in her songs “Manic Depression”, “Swallow”, and “Misery Loves Company” from “Opheliac” album.
In her last album, “FLAG”, there is also one song about it, “Take the pill”, which is one of her best songs for me.
Emilie Autumn, FLAG Album
It is possible to find a autobiographical novel whose name is “The Asylum for Wayward Victorian Girls” which wrote during her hospitalization in a psyquiatric hospital.
In her concerts he is with some girls which sing, dance and interact with her songs doing gestures, taking tea or even kissing her. They are called “Bloody Crumpets”: Lady Joo Hee, Lady Aprella, Captain Vecona, Little Lucina, The Naughty Veronica, Ulorin Vex, Captain Maggot, The Blessed Contessa, Little Miss Sugarless. They members of this group have changed a lot during these years and currently there are only two.
Bloody Crumpets: Veronica and Maggot
I love her style which could be possible to define as a mixture between “punkatorian” (non real word which she has created to say punk+victorian) and “burlesque”.
During a period of time she has designed her own clothes and she had a page where it was possible to find fashion and accesories which have been created by herself. Nowadays it is only possible to find merchandising in her shop inside her site.
Get it. Feed It. Spread it.
Update 2nd February 2014: The Bloody Crumpets have changed their name and now they will be named The Soggy Biscuits.