How do you create your work? Take us through the process from concept to final.
It starts with a brief- usually – all the best briefs appear in my mind as I read them. If they don’t I do a few doodles, look in a few books, go for a walk, watch a film- either force it, go looking for it, or ignore it and wait for it to fall on me. When it does, I sketch it loosely and then again, and again. Then when I am happy I take it in to PS and make a start. It stays there till it’s done.
What materials do you use? How much if any is done on the computer?
biro or pencil for a rough sketch- just to help the minds eye see it- then its all on the computer.
Do you use reference materials or does all of it come from your head?
It depends – I always want to make sure its the best I can- I wonder if you can tell by looking at my pieces which ones I have used reference material. If I do- I try to use as much original content as I can. Some one used my camera the other day and laughed at the photos of me semi naked pulling faces haha. I have also amassed a load of skulls, a viking helmet, some strange hats, bones and feathers to help me learn how to do the best I can.
Do the bands give you any direction?
They do tell me what they want and we work together to see what we can do- obviously you know what will work and what won’t and you have to be good at either explaining that or have the time and dedication to show them that. You know what you are good at- you know what its going to look like the same way they know their music and can hear riffs and melodies, you can see pictures in your mind. I like getting some direction and I like working with some bands who know if they throw the right seeds (words) up in the air, you will plant (draw) the right ones.
Do you have an advice for artist’s who wish to do artwork for bands?
hahaha I had a conversation with another artist the other day about if we were asked something similar to this (he shall remain nameless) and we agreed a good answer would be: undercut all the other artists while you can. Copy as many people’s styles as possible. Copy what’s in. Steal peoples ideas. Boast like fuck like its almost as if you have joined the band. Ignore everyone. Do a load of designs and put famous bands names in the designs like it was for them but say nothing. Steal, beg, undercut, dismiss and lie.
That’s a good answer but its not the right answer, its not what you should do- its what a lot of people will do, but you shouldn’t do it… hahah. I get asked this a lot and I always say do a design for free for a band- a good band will take your design out on tour and loads of people will see it. Bands are creative people and will love to see what else you got and can do. Do one or two for free- but no more. Email as many bands as you can- email their labels- show them your work- don’t worry about saying anything- your work will talk for its self. Don’t lie! Just be honest and polite. I heard a great thing from someone once: work for free or work for full price- but don’t work for cheap. I know a load of kids who are doing quite well in the business at the moment; working from their parent’s house in their bedrooms- spending all week on one design for a cool band for $40. that’s all good now- but you are not going to make a living out of it. When you leave your parents house and have to pay the bills you are going to have to charge more…but by then the bands are used to having it cheap- so they will dump you and go to the next kid in his bedroom charging $40 and you will realize that you have made it this way. I know its hard when you start out- but know your worth, stand up for your self. No one will treat you like a professional until you start acting like one. There is lots more to say on the subject and I can’t cover it all now- I may be wrong and haven’t said enough- but that’s the gist of it. I hope it helps. It’s not about money- it’s about knowing your worth, respecting your trade and other artists.
What are you currently working on?
4 tees for Disturbia. Great company- great people. Go check em out.
Do you have any dream projects?
A gallery show. All prints.
Who are your favorite bands of all time and what bands are you listening to right now?
of all time: Kyuss, Fugazi, Tool. Faith No More and loads more. At the moment I am listening to loads of soundtrack scores from films: Leon, There Will Be Blood, Event Horizon, Sunshine. etc.
Check out more kick ass artwork at The Art of Godmachine.