When did you know that you would pursue your passions full-time?
Art has been my passion since as long as I can remember, however it wasn't until my later teen years that I considered it to be a career possibility. I've always enjoyed drawing and painting, however never held myself to the the standard of what I believed at the time to be a "real artist". In school we'd learn about the typical roster of icons, such as Picasso, Van Gogh, Da Vinci, etc. Although inspiring, the constant exposure to artists such as these narrowed my perception of who could succeed in this craft. As a kid I felt as though artists were either selling pieces for millions, or broke working on their art as a hobby. It wasn't until my older brother Deaddilly introduced me to photoshop and graphic design, that I started to view art from a different perspective. Realizing that art isn't just what's displayed in galleries, it's in nearly everything we interact with on a daily basis from large billboards to the design of matchbox. From that point on I knew I could make art much more than just a passion.
Can you describe your process for creating album art?
Album art is one of my favourite projects to take on, however also one of the most delicate. There's a level of trust behind being tasked with visualizing another artists collection of work. Which is why I prefer to start my creative process with a conversation. Asking the artist a variety of questions that bring clarity to the deeper meanings behind the music. After that I listen to the music, and just let my mind take me where it will. I have terrible process work for album art, and to be honest sort of just have a deep routed trust in my creativity to make something special each time. It's this organic approach to the process which makes it a pleasure to work on, and leads to some of my favourite artworks.
What are some of your sources of inspiration?
Top 5 Films
1. Before Sunrise - Richard Linklater
2. Lost In Translation - Sofia Coppola
3. The Tree of Life - Terrence Malick
4. Blue Valentine - Derek Cianfrance
5. 2001: A Space Odyssey - Stanley Kubrick
Top 5 Music Artists
1. Elliott Smith
2. Father John Misty
4. Sufjan Stevens
5. Frank Ocean
Top 5 Designers/Artists
1. Peter Saville
2. Hajime Sorayama
3. David Rudnick
4. Tom Sachs
5. Hassan Rahim
How do you think your work would change if could never touch the adobe suite again?
I occasionally wonder what would happen if we were stripped of the basic things we use on a daily basis for creating and marketing. Things such as adobe suite, social media, and technology as a whole. To consider what life would be like without these tools and platforms really reminds me how much I take for granted, being apart of a generation that truly has the world at our fingertips both creatively and socially. While there's no doubt it would make achieving exposure and certain aesthetics difficult, I also believe it would do plenty of good. Forcing creatives like myself to work with what's directly accessible to experiment, develop techniques, and form a unique aesthetic. Ultimately it comes down to creativity, focusing on the ideas and bringing them to life by your own means. Whether that be a macbook loaded with adobe suite, or a pencil and paper.
Although their livelihoods depend on it, most people don’t enjoy selling themselves. How do you think this conundrum should be handled for emerging designers? How did you handle it?
When those inevitable dry spells come around with little to no paid jobs, I don't stress it. I became a graphic designer out of wanting to create art for myself, and along the way from piece to piece I've received interest to do commissioned work. In the past when I've stressed over not getting jobs, it's led to nothing but self doubt and unpleasant work experiences. Whereas now when I'm without work I view it as time to develop myself as an artist, and work on projects without financial gain in mind; and without fail by taking the time to create new personal art, commissioned work follows.