Encyclopedia of Flowers: Makoto Azuma and Shunsuke Shiinoki
Azuma Makoto is a Japanese artist who works primarily with flowers and plants. His creations are, to be blunt, mindblowing. His eye for colour, texture, and detail is insanely good. He has worked from large scale (creating a sunken moss garden in a gallery) to small and quirky (bonsai tress made from Lego. LEGO, people.) And now he has teamed up with photographer Shiinoke Shunsuke to release this amazing "encyclopedia" of botanical still lifes. The combinations of colour, texture and line are so interesting to me. He uses material that, 50% of the time I've never heard of, but for the most part would never have thought to use together. The way the book is laid out is also a unique and wonderful way to organise his works: a section dedicated to flowers from other countries, for example, is called "Flock" - an homage to birds migrating to new places. And the great thing is this book is actually an encyclopedia, of sorts. Each photo is broken down into specific varieties of flower. I highly recommend this book if you like flowers, photography, or art. I am feeling particularly inspired and I've only just opened the (decadently shiny) cover.