All this week the good folks at the Creative Review will be offering blog readers a chance to grab a half price magazine subscription in order to raise money for Comic Relief.
The offer includes 12 issues of the Creative Review Magazine plus Monograph and accsess to the Creative Review’s online archive, all for £35 (90% of the proceeds go to Comic Relief, with the remaining 10% used to cover selling costs)
After being announced yesterday, the first load subscriptions sold out within one minute. For those of you who missed the offer, the Creative Review blog has promised to add more half price subscriptions over the next few days.
It is predicted that today will be the busiest shopping day of the year with credit company Visa predicting a £1.2 billion spend by UK shoppers. So as is the tradition at this time of year, there have been a bucket load of new products unleashed on the consumer buying public, tempting you to part with your hard earned cash. Here’s a quick post containing three of the best books released this holiday season.
Dran – I Love My World
Here’s the new promo video for “I Love My World”, the 6th book by French artist Dran.
A great looking publication featuring satirical parody’s of everyday life in the form of beautiful illustrations. It’s no wonder why Pictures On Walls have giving the artist so much attention recently.
“Wild Animals” is the new book by Rop Van Mierlo. Featuring 14 water colour animals in 40 pages. Here’s how the artist describes his latest work:
“The Snake rattles, the Lion yawns and man makes a book. A wild book for civilized people. a sophisticated book for wild people. A beautiful book with wild animals for civilized people. a book with beautiful animals for wild people”
Wild Animals is available now through Rop’s Website, priced at € 30.
Phlegm – Issue 10
Phlegm latest comic has been available for a couple of weeks now and is arguably his best self-publication to date. Featuring a three colour screen printed cover and 20 litho printed pages, the book has been made in an edition of 1000 and is a steal at £3.
Also for a limited time you pick up issues 7-10 of phlegm for £10 with each issue hand wrapped in a screen print!
For more infomation check out his official web Here
In his third book in as many months, Ian Stevenson aims to tackle large and often confusing subject of the art industry in the signature style we’ve all come to love. The book is a mature take on an intresting subject as the artist internally critiques an industry he currently operates in, with insightful opinions and messages that come across in way that can only make you smile.
Now That”s What I Call Art is Lithograph printed and features 48 pages of twisted Art goodness. Available now through Pictures On Walls for £5. Bargain!
Phlegms large scale and intricate street art has taken many forms over the years. From full colour wall murals to black and white illustrations, with his current pieces looking like they’ve jumped straight from the pages of his sketchbooks on to the walls of South Yorkshire.
But aside from being one of the most talked about street artists of this year, with work featuring on the Wooster Collective, Concrete Hermit and Vandalog to name a few, Phlegm holds a true passion for comic book publication and one could argue that he’s an illustrator, first and foremost.
Having recently declared that he’ll be turning his back on the exhibition circuit for good in order to focus on new projects, Pejhy decided to catch up with the artist for a rare interview in order to gain an insight into some of the themes behind his work, his current methods and his views on the art industry.
When speaking to artists and galleries in Sheffield I found that you had a reputation for being quite a private artist. Gaining the respect of the local artists by exhibiting only when it feels right to you and then only on your terms. What are your thoughts behind exhibiting? Are you against your art being used a source of entertainment?
I’ve done a few small shows in the past but last year I decided to I stop exhibiting altogether, even in group shows. I have a love hate relationship with what I do.
Working on walls instead of canvass and making books instead of doing shows cuts out all the crap. It puts my work in the world for people to take it or leave it, with no brands or gallery reputations attached. Too many artists these days just don’t seem driven by ideas and a burning desire to follow a body of work. It’s just constant spamming, networking and hype. For me the work is way more important than getting somewhere with it.
One aspect of your work I really admire is your mock advertisements, highlighting the naivety of consumers and the way businesses manipulate us into believing we need there products to be happy. How do you feel as a consumer yourself?
I try and just keep away from it all; apart from buying paint and ink I really don’t need anything. Most of the time I find it funny like I’m walking around in a Douglas Adams novel.
I love the fact that you can advertise a shoe with a special heel that tones your arse and that people will buy that rather than exercise properly. That you can buy face creams that cost huge sums of money because they have some extract from a herb that flowers once a year on a full moon or some shit…like we can force back the ageing process with this 0.00001% extract.
Your recent time lapse video has been well received around the web, featuring on many blogs (including this one). Why do you think more and more artists, street artists in particular, are using the medium of film to show their work?
I think for artists that work in an ephemeral and spontaneous way video has become a great outlet these days. It shows the speed and freedom that makes this kind of art what it is.
You regularly blog you work in progress and keep your site updated with recent work and show previews of up and coming comics. As an artist working today do you think it’s important to have an online presence?
My blog is for me really, I see it as a diary. I update every week and it keeps me on my toes, helping keep lulls and burnouts at bay…helps me keep my pace. I’m not sure if I can say it’s important for all artists, I can only speak for myself really. It seems that having an online presence is important whether you’re an artist or not these days so I guess it must be important.I don’t mind updating one thing every week for anyone out there interested.
Some people have Myspace, Facebook, twitter, a blog, a website, a flickr account… I think at some point you must have to take a day off to do some artwork… so yeah it’s important but I think it can easily be detrimental as an artist or just as a person too.
Your last comic publication, issue 9: the sketchbook issue was unique in that it showed the reader how one of your works would evolve over time. It seemed like quite a personal issue. What made you want to publish a comic of your work in progress?
To honest it was just knocked together because I didn’t really have time to do another issue at the time. I was working on a bigger long term book project.
I produce huge amounts of sketchbooks; I have shelves full of them. I think I’m always looking for ways to use them in some way. The old issues of my comic from one to five had sections of sketchy Shrigley style drawings all of which I used to scan from my notebooks.
I recently purchased a comic on your recommendation, “Funeral” by Barnaby Richards which was absolutely beautiful. What other comics can you recommend?
I love Chris ware and Tom Gauld. Lesser known artists like Mark Beyer too. I like a lot of outsider art like Henry Dargers mad journals or the books of insane flying machines drawn by Charles Dellschau.
I don’t read a great deal of stuff because I don’t like being influenced. Every now and then I’ll treat myself though.
Is it true you’re currently working on your first book? What other projects do you have lined up for the future?
Yes I figured that if I’m rejecting gallery work I need to look at taking my self publishing to another level. I’m working on a long story set at sea called ‘in brine’ Its going to be a few hundred pages long, a4 and with a hard spine.
I’m currently about half way through drawing it. The next issue of phlegm will be out mid to late November and then I’m going to take a long break from the comic while I get in brine wrapped up.
Unfortunately I’m unable to post all of my favorite images from Phlegm’s huge portfolio of sketches and street art, so to see more from the artist please visit his website HERE
Art Support is hand drawn, surrealist animation from 1994 by the 54 year old Dutch artist Lars Nørgård featuring a well executed sound track composed by Vagn E. Olsson.
The ultra fast pacing in the film makes for some really compelling viewing, with every occurrence moving the story on to another subject (which is not dissimilar to Blu’s recent animations). Unpredictable and brilliant:
Video is increasingly becoming an important medium for Street artists to show work and communicate to their audience. Whether their producing time lapse videos such as Lucy Mclauchlan’s “Tacit”, viral hits such as Blu’s “Muto” or fully blown feature length movies such as this years “Exit thought the gift shop” by Banksy.
“It’s Snowing” is the latest animation project from the Brazilian street art duo, Os Gemeos.
I’m particularly excited about this project as i’ve always wanted to see what their creations would look like in motion and after seeing this beautifully illustrated trailer, expectations are sky high. We can’t wait to see how this one turns out.
As another academic year comes to a close, universities up and down the country present to us their finest servings of fresh faced graphic designers and illustrators. This years show at Sheffield Hallam University has introduced me to the work of recently graduated illustrator Tom Casson.
Displaying his work in the form of prints and hand made zine’s, in his up and coming self publication “A Vision Of The Future” Tom has taken examples of modern culture and twisted them to paint his own (hilarious) view of western civilization in the year 2020. Tom writes “A Facebook profile is deemed worthy enough that Birth Certificates and Passports are fazed out”. We certainly hope that isn’t the case.
Showing a great sence of fun in his work we decided to invite Tom to answer a few questions for Pejhy before he enters the working world, heres what he had to say:
Congratulations on your nomination to take part in this years D&AD show. What will you be displaying at the exhibition? have you been given the opportunity to submit new pieces or will you be showing work from your graduation show?
This is awkward *laughs* Unfortunately, I can not attend this years show. I am off to the USA for the summer next week, as I am working at a Special Needs camp in Pennsylvania. I did it last year and really enjoyed it so I am not too upset about missing out on the show.
Something i particularly enjoyed from you at the Creative Spark group show was your zine “A Vision of the Future”. Do you have any plans to make this publication more widely available?
Thank you and yes, I am going to release ‘A Vision of the Future’ later this year. I am going to reprint the zine, send a few out to possible employers. Then start selling the zine itself with a few screen prints of images from the booklet on my website, once that is up and running. Don’t hesitate, get your orders in now !
As an illustrator do you think it’s important to work on one recognizable style or is that something that comes naturally?
I believe when starting out as an illustrator it is important to have a certain style, wether that be the method and techniques you use or the concepts behind your work. This, then leaves room for experimentation as you progress in your career. I guess when you have been drawing for so long it eventually becomes natural when you first put pen to paper. I think its important not to be too strongly influenced by what’s fashionable and/or the current trend within illustration.
When creating pieces of assessed work or exhibition pieces, what are your ideal working conditions?
I really enjoy working at home. With everything I own around me, as then I can refer to a book or have a can of Rubicon Mango whenever I please.The most important thing is that I must always, always have music on. Its got the ability to inspire you and it can suit every type of mood you are in. I am currently listening to the album “Nigerian Rock Special: Psychedelic Afro-Rock & Fuzz Funk in 1970′s Nigeria”.
Who are you favourite illustrators working today? if you could work for/with anyone in the industry who would they be?
I have a few, Simon Spilsbury, Peter Arkle, I also really enjoy Vic Reeves’ work. I went to see him at a Q&A recently at the Lyceum in Sheffield and he was hilarious. His book ‘Vast Book of World Knowledge’ is one of the funniest things I have ever read/looked at. As for work, I would love my illustrations to be represented by the CIA (Central Illustration Agency) they have a great collective that show the full range of illustration that is around around today.
How would you personally measure what it is to be a successful illustrator?
Very difficult question especially as a graduate. Personally all I want to do is make people laugh. I think to be able to create images that need no caption, no explanation, that people just understand and enjoy, that’s being ‘successful’ for me.
Finally, now that you have finished your degree what do you have planned for the future?
Well as I said earlier, I am off to America for the summer. I am treating it as somewhat of a sabbatical, before coming back refreshed with quite afew exciting projects in the pipe line, including the “Vision of the Future” publication release. Of course setting up my website and looking for freelance work as I go. For now there is my blog:
I was first introduced to the work of London based illustrator Gina Baber a few weeks back by master remixer and producer Gold Panda after his gig in Sheffield when inquiring who had designed his amazing t-shirt print.
Crafting her beautiful illustrations for some of the most prestigious names in electronic music ( including Gold Panda, Erol Alkan and Primary1), Gina has begun the move from the album cover and flyer design to build up a strong portfolio of delicate drawings and t-shirt prints. I recently caught up with her to reflect on her current works and find out what we can be expecting in the future:
First I’d like to thank you for taking the time for answer our questions, would you like to introduce yourself to our readers, any formal art training or qualifications? how did you start out as an illustrator?
Hey, my name’s Gina Baber. I studied BA Illustration at The Arts Institute at Bournemouth. I moved to London 4 years ago and started working as the poster designer for Trash & then Durrr. I make artwork for bands, musicians, clubnights & various other projects and spend the rest of my time working at Rough Trade, buying records, playing tennis and watching cookery shows and hip hop videos.
We’ve seen a fair bit of commercial work from you in the music industry. What are the benefits of working as an illustrator for other creative industries?Do you have a lot of freedom over what you produce or do you still have to work to a very strict brief?
I love working with musicians because music is my other main passion and I find it exciting to produce images that reflect the feeling of the music. With most of the people I have worked with I have been lucky enough to have the freedom to produce images that have been inspired by the style or feeling of the musicians work.
So what music inspires you when you work?
I am inspired by punk, post-punk, new wave disco and 50′s/60′s rock’n'roll and the style and imagery that goes with it. I also love hip hop & RnB and listen to that a lot of the time. I really like the type and graphics used on 90s hip hop records and music videos. It really depends on what I’m working on or the time of day but I do seem to work at night quite a lot of the time and disco seems to fit that nicely.
Top 3 tracks at the moment:
1. Pete Rock & CL Smooth – They Reminisce Over You
2. Washed Out – Belong
3. Harlem – Gay Human Bones
There’s a consistent set of soft colours used in your illustrations and I’ve noticed you like to include images of “hands” in many of your pieces. How long did it take you to find your style, and what has inspired it along the way?
I think I have always used a lot of colour in my work. I am inspired by the paintings of Hockney, Matisse, Warhol, Keith Haring & Richard Hamilton amongst others, punk sleeves & posters, North American Indian, South American, Egyptian & Aboriginal textiles and painting. Clouds & sunset.
How would you normally start a new piece of work? What process do you go through?
It depends, but I usually do lots of drawings and bits of collage and somehow piece them all together. I often use my own photography as initial inspiration as well. I am currently doing a lot of screen printing and making marbled & collaged backgrounds that I then print onto and embellish.
Where do you go for artistic inspiration? Who are your favourite artists/illustrators working today? Any favourite galleries?
Some of my favourite artists/illustrators working today include Bjorn Copeland of Black Dice, Shawn Reed of Wet Hair & Raccoo-oo-oon who runs an amazing label called Night People records and does all the artwork. I also love Susumi Mukai (Zongamin). He is incredibly talented.
From your website I’ve only been able to find one print for sale, entitled “O//wl_s”. Is there anywhere else we could purchase your work from? will you be releasing anymore prints at your next exhibition?
I am currently working on a set of limited prints, zines & t shirts which I will be selling through my website and at the exhibitions I am currently planning with my friend Patrick.
What can we be expecting from you in the second half of 2010?
I will be doing solo and joint exhibitions with a couple of friends, and hope to start a very small clothing range (mainly printed shorts), learn to play the drums, do more artwork for bands and start a record label and an RnB/hip hop night with a difference.
You can find more of Gina’s illustrations on her website.
Joe Flory aka Primary 1 (Blog/MySpace) has gradually been gaining public awareness following his debut release ‘Hold Me Down’ in 2008 on Erol Alkan’s label Phantasy. Since then he has released a duo of light hearted party tracks in collaboration with Riton (Who’s There? and Radiate). Recently however saw the free release of ‘Mess Detective‘, a 15 track collection of demos and early works. It’s a mix of dreamy delights and stompy funk tracks, which shows real promise for his forthcoming album and UK tour supporting Ellie Goulding.
I was delighted to spend a day with Joe when I helped out with the filming of a video for the track ‘Foaming’, which has yet to see the light of day. An infectious track with clear accessible lyrics and sounds. He’s a super nice guy and talented too. His ability to play a wide arsenal of instruments that assist him in the writing and performance of songs, along with his voice, begin to reveal the potential waiting to shine.
Here’s my favourite from the mess album. An instrumental layered guitar track with warm fuzzy bass rolls and sweeping gentle synths.
Also worth a listen are two mini mixes available on his mixcloud.
All of this posts visuals are courtesy of Audrey Anastasy, whom I first came across when I saw two tracks from the mess album had utilised some of her motion pictures. The online portfolio is full of colourful illustration, photography and animation. The layering and mix of media gives the work an appreciable handmade aesthetic that is full of enchantment and fantasy.
Thanks to everyone who came to Pejhy’s live drawing event with Ian Stevenson at Bungalows and Bears last month.
If you missed it then don’t worry, Ian’s creations will be on permanent display behind the bar and the graffiti he drew in the Gents is’nt going anywhere either.
Due to the success of our first drawing event we’ve been given the go ahead to bring you a series of Pejhy nights throughout 2010.
Our next FREE event will be in February and as always they’ll be live drawing, free cake, sweeties, Art materials for you to get messy with, DJ’s playing some great music and some very special guests… We’ll keep you posted!
Here’s what happened in December:
KID ACNE taking some snaps
Ian Stevenson's live drawing
If your at all intrested in getting involved in our next event (e.g. live drawing, DJing, marketing… ect) then all you need to do is pop into bungalows and ask for Ste or drop Pejhy an email on our contact link.
PEJHY thanks: Jennifer Peters for her fantastic photography, all the DJ’s who travelled from Norwich, London and Nottingham to be there, Ste for all his organisation and effort, Kid Acne, Lucy and the archipelago works for all their support, everyone who came out after and got messy and Ian for his great great work.
Being influenced by the everyday strangeness of the world around him, Ian’s signature combination of odd words and distorted characters make his style one of the most recognisable in the world of illustration.
I’m not really sure what it is about Ian Stevenson’s work that makes you so emotionally attached to his characters, or if any love you gave to them would even be appreciated. Some of the creations that dwell in his universe would appreciate a cuddle I’m sure, others would be just as likely to cut you up in to little pieces and bury you in their garden. No matter you get from Ian’s work one thing is clear, once you let your self be immersed in his world, there’s no going back!
A lot of readers may recognise Ian’s work from his commercial projects, having worked for a number of A-list clients including Microsoft, Perrier, E4, MTV and Paul Smith to name a few. If you’ve been reading our posts for any amount of time then you’ll know what huge Ian Stevenson fans we are here at Pejhy, so it is with great pleasure we give you our exclusive interview with the man behind the pen:
What’s your favourite website at the moment? Here is an amazing website that reveals the people who copy and plagiarize. Brilliant, just brilliant! get your digital pitchforks at the ready for some good old fashioned justice… www.youthoughtwewouldntnotice.com
Any superpower, what would it be? My super power would be Sarcasm, I’d join a gang of superheroes and they would call me ‘Sarcasma’. I would be the first person to appear at the crime scene and I’d use my sarcasm skills to annoy and wrong foot the enemy, possibly I would mock the villains outfit or mimic their voice. When they are suitably annoyed the other members of the team would arrive to defeat them properly.
If you could banish any three things from the universe what would they be? I’ve thought about this one a lot and although I would like to change many many things I have started to think that if I did have the power to remove things I don’t like, then life might be too good and I would have nothing to moan about. I’ve managed to think of a few that would make my world a better place. The first would be working for free unless it’s for charity. There could be a law to protect artists and maybe it could be called Stevenson’s law or something and would mean that all jobs had to paid for properly. I’d also have to get rid of some of the trumpet based free jazz music as it seems to make me feel uneasy. Finally I would remove some of the talentless and useless celebrities, they deserve nothing more than to be constantly ignored.
What’s the best computer game ever made? Commuting is like game, I weave in and out of the pre-programmed human like objects in my walking space ship.
If you dug a hole through the earth from one end to the other, lets say from the North Pole right down too the South Pole, and then you jumped down that hole, what would happen?
I imagine it would be fun for a few seconds, then you’d probably black out and eventually die either by being unable to breath or by your body being shredded to bits as it bounces off the sides like a rag doll.
When will we see your “Rubbish” book?
Soon… hopefully soon, oh I do hope it is soon. I have all the photos collated and now it just needs to be made into a book.
For those of you new to his work I highly recomend you check out his new group show athe the Archipelago Works in Sheffield, and be sure to pick up a copy of his “Best Wishes, Get Well Soon” book, it’s basicaly his “best of ” collection and a steal at £10.
A couple of video treats today, both with aural and visual qualities.
First is a previously featured video by Ian Stevenson. After a long period of youtube removal ‘Stare Into The Sun’ is back for our eyes and ears to enjoy.
Second be something relatively new, being released on November 17th. Flairs bass full, kraut rocky instrumental has been given a visual aspect with this 8-bit style production by newcomer Jérémie Perin. It’s très funny, très dirty, très sexy, tres pejhy!
French is a London based illustrator, known for his dark and often macabre drawings. Sourcing inspiration from his two greatest loves, Skateboarding and Death Metal, French’s work has taken him across the globe showcasing his talents in London, the USA, Denmark, France, Israel and Australia.
His Latest show “Blood Oath” at the Archipelago Works in Sheffield has so far received an overwhelming positive response, proving to the critics that he’s a talent to look out for in the future.
I recently met up with the man at his latest (and fantastic) show to talk about Skulls, Heavy Metal and London Pricks!
Tell us about you current show “Blood Oath” at the Archipelago Works? The theme for this show is skulls, we’ve produced 12 different screen prints all of which are skull related and will be available exclusively through the gallery.
How have you managed to make each piece in this show feel unique despite the very specific theme? I’m total fascinated by skulls. Their are so many different variations you can do on one subject that will stop an exhibition from being repetitive. So even though the theme is specific I’m only limited by my imagination.
How would you describe yourself as an artist? People like to fit me into the whole “Street Art/Skate Art” thing because i design skate decks but I’m an illustrator, that’s how i make a living. I don’t really know anything about street art or graffiti and am not particularly interested in whats going on today, i do however like all the old Santa-Cruz graff from like 20 years ago.
How would you normally start a new piece, would you approach a logo different to how you would a sketch or drawing? I treat every piece i do as a sketch or a drawing, no matter who or what the piece is for. If, for example, i was asked to produce a logo, i would treat the letters as an illustration so the end result will look like a picture rather then a logo or a load of letters.
Did you study illustration at collage of university? I have a degree in fine art, not illustration. That’s something I’ve taught myself, drawing and learning how to use computers to produce pieces.
Do you listen to music while you work, if so who are your favorites? Oh so many, i grew up listening to Death Metal, in fact I’ve just got back from a metal festival in Helsinki. My favorite bands of all time would be Revenge, Bolt thrower, Blasphemy and Ozzy to name a few.
Who are you favorite artists? I’m really into Derrick D’Beck and Murdock Stafford, his work is all skulls and stuff. As for more “classical art” i really like the work of Goya. I recently bought a book by an artist called “Bruegel” which is full of pictures of Hell and people being eaten by demons.
Would you say you were more influenced by the classic stuff? Yeah, defiantly. I’m heavily influenced by dark religious art. I like pieces to have a lot going on in them.
Is their any kind of art you really dislike? I can’t stand bland art, shit that looks like it could be selling in Ikea you know. It’s so non-offensive it’s offensive!
You’ve done a fair bit of commissioned work for Modular Records and other advertising agencies, how is the work process for a client different from private work? The first time you work for someone it can be difficult, but once you’ve built-up a relationship both parties will know what works and what doesn’t work.
Would you let someone change your work if they were dissatisfied? It would really depend on how big the change is, for example i recently designed a T-Shirt for the band WolfMother which had a crow sitting on a skull. the record label suggested that i changed the crow to a hawk to make the piece seem more 70′s looking. Small changes like that I’m fine with but you should be careful because whoever pays for a commission can have a huge influence on how a piece turns out.
Have you ever worked in 3D? No, I’ve never made sculptures or anything like that. I’ve got a friend whose a fashion designer, he owns a little shop on Carnaby Street in London. I’m gonna be designing some belt buckles with him. My first design is a gas mask with horns coming out of it.
Are you living in London at the moment? Yeah, with my girlfriend.
What do you both think about the illustration and art scene down their? (French) I’ve done stuff with Stolen Space Gallery and have friends who exhibit in the capitol frequently, i always go to their shows but i feel separate from the London thing, East London especially is full of “Jazzy Cunts”
(Frenches Girlfriend) To be honest sometimes people can take themselves to seriously but their is a great art scene in i can’t lie. East London can be very pretentious, French will go to his friends show but can’t stand the whole “trend” thing, he doesn’t suck up to anyone. If what the London galleries wanted matched what French wanted then he would do more shows there.
The prints featured in this interview are exclusively available through The Archipelago Works, there are twelve prints in total, six single colour and six multi-colour, all in an edition of six (666)!
To see more work by French (including his skate videos) you can follow his blog here.
Julian Callos is a Los Angeles based artist who creates beautiful dreamy water coloured illustrations full of flexible limbed humans and water washed backgrounds. His unique style has led him to exhibit widely across the globe from San Francisco to London, building an impressive and consistantly brilliant portfolio of sculptures and paintings.
Julian is one of those artists who never produces a bland piece of work, I absolutely love everything he’s done so far and cannot wait for his next show over here in the UK. Julian recently took time out from his extremly busy scedual to answer our questions, heres what the talented young artist had to say:
You regularly blog ideas and early sketches of your work; how close do your finished pieces match what you aimed to achieve in you mind?
It really depends on the project…sometimes my final piece, after various stages of sketches and revisions, is completely different from what I had originally conceived in my mind. Other times I’ll come up with an idea that I’m happy with from the very beginning and just stick with it through the entire process. I just try to make sure that my final sketch is something that I would enjoy turning into a finished painting, regardless of whether or not that sketch was exactly what I had in mind in the beginning.
How long has it taken you to develop your style to where it is today?
Well I’ve been drawing ever since I was about three years old, and my style has evolved throughout the years along with changes in what inspires me, what interests me, etc. I guess what you see now has mostly been developed in the past couple years in college. I’ve really tried to take all the inspirations I’ve had in the past and the present — cartoons, comics, pop culture — and mash them up into my own thing. I’m still learning new things all the time, though; my tastes are changing, different things are starting to inspire me…I think these changes will certainly influence my work, as change has always done.
What is your typical work process and what conditions do you work under? Do you like to draw and paint to music for example?
I love to work while music is playing. Sometimes I’ll work with the TV on in the background, or with a movie playing. Other times I’ll work in complete silence. It really just depends on my mood.
Looking on inprint.com i noticed that you will sell any one print in a varity of sizes and prices. How important do you think it is to make your art accessible and affordable to everyone?
I think accessibility and affordability, especially in this economy, is very important. And it seems like art prints are a good market these days…It’s nice to own something by an artist, but not everyone can afford an original, so it’s pretty cool when you can buy a print.
What has had the biggest influence on your work recently?
Recently I’ve been looking to a lot of indie comics for inspiration. Pen/brush and ink stuff. You can create such beautiful lines with a brush; combine that with bold colors and lots of contrast and you’ve got a stunning piece of art to look at.
One thing i’ve noticed from reading comments on blogs and various sites is how impressed the audiance is with your ability to create soft movement in your pieces. Do you have any plans of creating an amimation?
Actually when I was younger I wanted to be an animator because I love cartoons, but I never really pursued developing that particular set of skills. I’d love to see my characters in motion, though!
Do you have any exhibitions planned for the near future, either as a group show or on your own?
I’m in a few shows in different galleries coming up before the end of the year. Off the top of my head there’s a group show with Black Maria Gallery in Los Angeles called “Skip the Mall,” as well as “Paper Pushers” at Gallery 1988 San Francisco. If you follow my blog (http://juliancallos.blogspot.com/) I’ll keep you updated on any and all shows I’ll be participating in. And I’m hoping to have my own website up soon, so look out for that as well.
Andrew Rae is a London based illustrator/film maker who’s lovable character heavy work many of you will recognise from the genius BBC series MONKEY DUST back in 2003.
Andrew began his illustration career back in 1998 producing flyers for 333 club night Perverted Science in Shoreditch, since then he has grown into one of the most succseful illustrators working today, building up an impressive portfolio and producing illustrations for big name clients including The Guardian, Sony, Orange, MTV, DC shoes, US Esquire, The Mighty Boosh, Penguin, The BBC and E4.
I’ve been a fan of Andrew Rae’s work for years now, and was lucky enough to meet the man a few months back, so it is with great pleasure that we present to you our exclusive interview with one of the most impressive and in-demand artists working today:
Do you listen to music when you work? If so what has been keeping you going recently?
I’ve been listening to Nick Cave and Warren Ellis’ soundtrack to The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, I saw them last night performing and doing readings from Nick Caves new book which was amazing they’re incredible performers..
How does working for a company differ from your private work? How is your work process different?
I enjoy both for different reasons when you’re working for a client you have a clear idea of what you’re trying to achieve set out in the brief so the joy comes from answering that brief with a good solution, of course the problem arises when they disagree with you on the solution. Private work however is a chance to play and experiment without a specific outcome being necessary but then it can be hard to find the time to fit it in especially when I could be playing my piano.
Have you ever turned down work due to a lack of creative control?
I turn work down if it doesn’t interest me and if I think it’ll bore me to do it, creative control isn’t something I particularly crave as a lot of good work comes out of collaboration and I can always have complete creative control on my personal work, and in fact my personal work generally informs the kind of commissions that I get. However the bottom line on creative control seems to be that the more you’re being paid the less control you have, particularly in advertising were they’ll often get me in because they love the bizarre things I draw but then want me to tone it down when they need to show the client. This isn’t always the way however.. for example I did a job for Perrier where they gave me keywords to illustrate and gave me free rein to do it as I wished (as long as I included the Perrier bottle somewhere) I came up with loads of bizarre responses and then they chose their favourites.
What are the benefits of working within the peepshow collective? Do you get more work offers from being part of a group? Do you share resources?
Being an Illustrator can get pretty lonely without a studio of people to work alongside so Peepshow is great for that, we’re all really good friends so it’s great to work alongside people who’s company I enjoy. We share a studio and shopping bills and printers etc. and we try to set ourselves projects i.e. exhibitions and animations to keep us working outside of our commercial work. As to whether we get more work cause of it is hard to say as I’ve never not been in Peepshow but I don’t imagine it does any harm.
A large proportion of you work includes animals with many species making frequent appearances, what’s your favorite animal and why?
I’m pretty fond of Cuttlefish since I saw some while diving in Australia and was really impressed by the way that they chance colour. There’s a great sequence in Blue Planet showing their mating dance where they use pattern and colour to attract a mate or repel an enemy.
How would you normaly produce an animation? Is the process done on your own or do you get outside help?
I do sometimes animate a little on my own but generally I prefer to get an animator in so that I can concentrate on creating artwork. Pete Mellor is the Peepshow in house animator so he tends to head up any animation projects we get in.
Who are your favorite artists or illustrators working today?
I’m a big fan of Chris Wares book Jimmy Corrigan the smartest Kid on Earth.
Do you have any plans to produce more animations either on your own, for a TV show or for a company?
I have a personal project that I’m currently working on which will involve illustrations, characters, narrative music and maybe some animation and we have a group animation project ticking over at the moment but it’ll probably take ages to get off the ground and I can’t say anymore than that right now I’m afraid.
Do you have any exhibitions planed for the near future?
I’m planning a night in conjunction with Heavy Pencil at the ICA but at a more intimate venue with bands and live drawing, we have a new Peepshow website on the way, I will have some new drawings available in the Peepshop soon and we have a Christmas sale planned with Garudio Studiage, watch the Peepshow blog for more details http://peepshowcollective.blogspot.com/.
[ Draft drawing by Jennie Webber for Lee Rosy's piece ]
Jennie Webber is a massively good friend of mine, she’s an all round good egg and shares a mutual love for glitter. But more importantly she is also a crackingly good illustrator and is really making a name for herself amongst the Nottingham art circuit. I have to admit to being slightly biased as she is one of my dearest friends, but there is no denying how bloody beautiful her drawings actually are.
At the moment she has a lot of fingers in different pies, and is not only producing work to be screen printed on t-shirts, taking part in live illustration events but is also organising and contributing to some massive events.
Today for example if your about in the Nottingham area you will find her screen printing some limited edition Tees down at the Hockley hustle (A wonderful musical event which takes part yearly down in Hockley, city centre). Joining her are other talented artists/graphic designers which are also printing t-shirts with other splendid designs. Jen Mchugh and Nick Cobby are two which really stand out for me, both very different from one another, but equally lovely. All three have produced some beautiful t-shirt designs especially for the event which you can purchase right now!!
[ Top Left - Jennie Webber | Top Right - Nick Cobby | Bottom - Jen Mchugh ]
If you want a slice of Webber’s work but are not currently in Nottingham and can’t not shimmy your way down to the hustle today, you can also get a fix from various other Nottingham locations. Webber has recently done a full wall piece for Lee Rosy’s cafe on broad street which is still up and looking glorious.
[ Work at Lee Rosy's ]
Jen specializes in illustrating animals, sometimes mounted on wooden plaques and other times arranged with objects, like monocles or umbrellas. She also does a pretty mean stag.
What’s nice about Jen’s work is her use of line. In her previous work, such as her Pug featured below, the line was purely descriptive, but now in her newer work (lee rosy’s wall drawings and hustle t-shirt) the line has become more rhythmic, still descriptive, but now forming shapes and patterns within the design. These create texture and a kind of movement, which is really rather nice on the eye.
[ 'Pug with Monocle' printed on t-shirts for 'Floodit' ]
If looking is not enough for you, which it certainly isn’t for me! You can get your hands on some Webber originals down at Cow in Nottingham, where she has two super t-shirts for sale, one of which is featured below with the lady herself. She is also selling some lovely framed illustrations in Lee Rosy’s alongside her wall piece which need loving homes.
So if you are about in the Nottingham area you should absolutely go and check out some of her work, it is a real treat.
[ The Lady herself with one of her t-shirts currently on sale at Cow, Nottingham ]
Just a quick message to all our arty readers; make sure you get yourself down to the Tate Britian On Saturday 26th of September as Lazy Oaf will be running a workshop from 12-5pm. They are inviting all artists and illustrators to bring along their designs to be transferred onto t-shirts and tote bags. In addition to this their will also be live music, live drawing, arty debates, a swap shop, performance art and poety throughout the day.
Make sure you get their early as there is limited room at these workshops and the Oaf is running the day on a first come, first served basis. Oh, and don’t worry if your like me and can’t draw, as you’ll be able to choose from a range of ”Oaf” designs as well. Sounds pretty cool eh?
Lars Nørgård is first and foremost an abstract-expressionist painter, creating wonderful large scale paintings bursting with colour and defined shapes. Yet despite his successful exicution in this area the 53 year old Danish artist has continued to produce fantastic works of surreal sketches using the modest method of pen on paper.
Most of Lars’ shows and exhibitions have been found in Scandinavia, with a few in America, but the artist is yet to exhibit in the United Kingdom despite his influence on modern surreal illustration in the UK being obvious. So as we continue to wait for the first Lars show, please enjoy some of my favorite sketches from his incredible portfolio of drawings: