The Spring Issue 2020 is OUT!

Featured

Tags

, , , , , ,


Here is the Spring 2020 edition of #theillustratorsjournal Great interviews: Angel Alvarez, Alexander Bostic, Jade Dressler, Dana Collins, Jack Foster, Kevin Atkinson, Donna Barstow and Chuck Pyle. Along with @HeatherFeathers Shout Out https://issuu.com/lonfellow/docs/tij_final_spring.final

CLICK ON THE IMAGE TO SEE THE MAGAZINE

Interview with: Rohan Eason

Tags

, , , , , , , , , ,


Rohan Eason Interview

Rohan Eason Interview

When did you first think about art as something you wanted to do? Were you encouraged or discouraged by family, friends, teachers, mentors?

My Parents are both artist, my grandad was a sign writer and my uncle was a Royal Academician, so there was certainly the seed of an idea, that art was something in- spiring and imaginative, something I could delve into even from a young age. I remember in primary school I was drawing fully formed figures and faces, while the other kids were still not joining the sky to the ground, and that was because I was so interested in looking and recreating what I saw. I remember my teachers at High School never knew what to do with me, which way to steer me.

Rohan Eason Illustration

Rohan Eason Illustration

They were brought in one day to the heads office, with my art teachers, and the discussion, was as to what i wanted to be, an artist or an illustrator. The idea I couldn’t be both didn’t make sense to me,  that there was even a difference didn’t seem something I would ever concern myself with. To      be an artist was my dream, it was the poetic journey through torment and discovery, love and hate, as an artist I could make illustrations or artworks, they were one of the same. Its an age old argument, and  I think I will always think of myself as an artist first, but the work I make professionally is illustration, and thats the difference.

What kind of kid were you? Where did you grow up? What were your influences?

I was born in the industrial city of Middlesborough, on the same road as the football stadium, Ayresome Park Road. It was a great community, every- one knew everyone, doors were open all day. Then we moved to a small town in Lincolnshire, and everyone said I talked funny. I got very quiet and introverted, and didn’t really enjoy the whole school thing. I think most kids are bullied, and i wasn’t any different, bullying comes in different forms, and I just happened to be the sensitive type that couldn’t really deal with the constant push and pull of friendship circles. My parents both worked so I would often not go into school, instead staying home and drawing or reading, anything to not face a school day.

But those days made me more interested in look- ing at life from a removed viewpoint, in a way there was no other way I could look at it, as I had removed myself. When i reached art school I had already decided that there were two ways to live your life, take part, or take notes, my artworks were my notes. A constant running dialogue, a description of what the other people did, but not what I did.

When I left University with an art degree, everything fell apart, life came flooding back in, and I couldn’t cope. The idea that I would go on just making art, came crashing down, when I couldn’t afford food or rent. Music got me through this time, companion- ship with my band mates helped me find a structure and drive again, and I was finally creating something that related to my life, while I took part in it.

From Rocker to Artist, how did that happen? And how did you progress?

It was around 2002, I was playing lead guitar in a band called Cyclones, having left University with a BA HONS in Fine Art, and having not really done much artistically for a while, other than I would sometimes do a quick sketch. The girlfriend of the lead singer, Rina, saw a drawing one day, and suggested I come see her boss, who owned a high end fashion boutique in Notting Hill. The owner Annette Olivieri, decided I had a little some- thing, and chucked me a bag in white kid leather, “tattoo that” she said. So I found pens that would work on leather, and I tattooed the bag. The draw- ing was black and white, and involved very detailedflowers and hair. Annette was impressed and gave me a leather jacket to do, so I did, this time with a horned girl, feather wings and flowers centre back. From there I went on to create fabric prints and artworks for Annette’s label for the next 2 years. I did private commissions, one was sent to Vogue editor Anna Wintour, and later created my own glove collection, with the first pair of dress leather gloves going to Yoko Ono. Two shoe collections followed and a spattering of other commissions, but I believed my career lay in fashion. This didn’t last long, fashion is not the nicest industry to work in, and I quickly felt like I was back in school, the bitchy back stabbing, the creative theft, and the broken promises, left me a thoroughly broken man. The upside was the pens I used for the leather, Rotring Rapidograph became my pens of choice, and the style I developed in this period with it’s intricacies and magical detail, and obsessive qualities became my illustrative style. My first children’s book came soon after I quit fashion, a collaboration with the great writer Geoff Cox, and music mogul Stuart Souter, saw a wonderful return to children’s books of old. Dark and frightening, with a psychedelic undertone that resonated with the peers around me, Anna and the Witch’s Bottle was critically acclaimed, released through Black- maps Press, it was a beautiful cloth bound hard- back, and it finally brought me attention for my artwork.

For More…

 

Interview with : Jade Dressler/Branding Strategist/Designer/Illustrator

Tags

, , , , , , ,


Jade Dressler

Interview: Jade Dressler

When did you first think about art/design/ marketing as something you wanted to do? Were you encouraged or discouraged by family, friends, teachers, mentors?

I was the type of kid born with imaginary, over- sized, futuristic Hollywood sunglasses looking at the world as if every molecule was a crystal ball into the future. I was always confidently doing things a little different like in third grade, deciding to defiantly wear a brand-new crisp light blue Swiss dot pajama top as a blouse with my grey flannel pleated skirt as a precise outfit choice full of contrasting texture and meaning. (for me in any case) I vividly remember the thrill of sit- ting in class with a secret, that I was wearing a PJ top. At 15, I was instructing my needle-pointing Aunt to make a Warhol soup can on a lime green background for a pillow she wanted to make for my bedroom. My visual and style confidence was in the creation of art, no matter what form.

I always felt like a playful old soul, always creating, always inspiring, lovingly-teasing and suggesting to other kids what they should do with their art. (that’s where the PR, brand consultant aspect comes from!) In high school pottery class I convinced a classmate to a challenge that, whatever the assignment was, we had to over-embellish and go a million miles beyond in the assignment. It was like the “Show- stopper” challenge on The Great British Baking Show reality show except with clay. My family were fiddlers who created outside of the lines. My Aunt Adele colored flowers on her plain white curtains with Crayola crayons for décor and I was mesmerized.

 

My Dad would tinker in the garage to take a copper cooking pot lid and make it into a centerpiece of an antique fireplace grill. My mom wrote a silly poem with little drawings on every birthday or Xmas gift. I collaged the walls of our playroom with magazine images and drawings which be- came my studio in later years. I always think where your ancestors came from influences your life path, those that came from Romania and Russia give me my gypsy spirit and the side from Vienna gives me the focus of a meticulous crafts-person.

I was encouraged by family and teachers. I had many mentors. One, Frank Hyder, artist and teacher at Moore College of Art taught me the sacred art of non-doing, just look- ing at a simple object or scene and taking time to visually record it, versus feeling that lines, brush strokes or marks be made on canvas with the fierce passion of an abstract action painter. Slowing down has always been a teacher!

What kind of kid were you? Where did you grow up? What were your influences?

I was an alternative, nerdy, cool kid that grew up in the suburbs. As a toddler, my toy preferences were pouring over magazines. Saturday morning cartoons were shunned in favor of Soul Train, voraciously

Jade Dressler art

Immortal Beloved

consumed and studied, and of course, being a suburb of Philadelphia, the Gene London show, featuring an illustrator who drew pictures and then went into magical worlds.

I was also very influenced by a relic from my mother’s youth. Her next-door neighbor grow- ing up was a lawyer named Ilo Orleans, who illustrated a 365-day book with little rhymes for his kids. I was fascinated by the charm of it all, the simple, humorous illustrations & poems. Impressed and influenced by the idea that a man self-published his own book!

My influences as a teen were con- sidered “alternative lifestyles” back then in the 70’s, the African American and gay cultures. They seemed to know how to have more fun in life. I tell a story in my book about my first encounter with a gaggle of fantastically-dressed trans-people at a Gay Pride parade. Around color, the worlds of fashion, art and entertainment opened up. I wanted to be there! Then, when I was 16 I entered a national Levi’s denim design contest and won an award. That set my path towards fashion and fashion illustration.

When I was 16 in 1976 I went to Europe for the first time. I was like a sponge in London, awed by the people on the streets, the punk rockers with huge, colored Mohawks contrasted with the proper banker types. I still have the ID magazines documenting the street style photography and describing the individuals photo- graphed. It really was the first I saw the documentation of street style that is huge today on Instagram.

Capturing moments and sketching inspiring people and making little stories today, well there’s where it all started for me!

For more of the interview

 

Interview with: Jack Foster

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , ,


Interview with Jack Foster

Interview with Jack Foster

When did you first think about art as something you wanted to do? Were you encouraged or discouraged by family, friends, teachers, mentors?

When I was in first grade, the teacher, Sister Rose, asked the class to draw a self-portrait. I drew myself walking home from school. At a parent teacher conference, Sr. Rose showed the picture to my mom and told her that she thought I had artistic talent because in the picture, I was leaning forward as I walked against the wind and my tie (yes, we wore ties to school back then), was blowing over my shoulder. Sr. Rose told my mom that knowing how to draw was just a small part of art. Perception was the rest. So my mom hung my self-portrait on the fridge and told me what Sr. Rose said. I knew that I liked to draw, but the encouragement I received from my mom and Sr. Rose ignited a passion in me that has never died down. My dad on the other hand was a hard working sheet metal worker and tried to discourage my art and pushed me to focus on a trade where I could make money.

To this day, I’m not sure if the motivation to succeed as an artist came from trying to prove my mom right, or trying to prove my dad wrong.

What kind of kid were you? Where did you grow up? What were your influences?

I was a very quiet kid, the eldest of seven. We were raised just northwest of Chicago. I loved baseball. Every day during the summer, we would walk around the neighborhood with our bats, balls and mitts, gathering the “regulars” together for a game. In grammar school, I was a bit above average, but excelled in art and would volunteer to do posters for library events. In the evenings, my family would gather around the TV. I would take the Sunday paper comics, which I guard- ed with my life all week, lay them out across the kitchen table and trace them or draw them freehand. Drawing a daily comic strip for the newspapers was my dream. So naturally

some comic strip artists became a big influence in my art, which is still obvious in my work. Mort Walker was my biggest influence in my early days. He drew a strip called Beetle Bailey and another called Hi and Lois in which he teamed up with Dik Browne. The strip is still going today being produced by his sons Brian and Greg along with Browne’s son, Chance.Of course Walt Disney was a huge influence. I read his biography at a young age and wasfascinated by him. And the fact that he grew up in Chicago was even more of a “draw”. When I was about 13 years old, the Muppets came on the scene. I loved how Jim Henson could get his puppets to show facial expressions with just eyebrows and a mouth. Jim Henson has really influenced the large eyes, bright colors and char- acter design in my work. 

Jack Foster Illustration

Your style is very unique. Did you work on developing a style or is that what naturally came out of you?

Throughout the years of submitting  to the newspaper syndicates, my  style changed drastically. I would  send outpacket of 30 strips every other week, and when they would be rejected and returned, I would redo the strips, altering my style a bit. Some rejection letters would be the standard “No, thanks. Good luck.”  But once in a while an art director would give me some advice. One director pointed out that my characters were “too cute” for the   comics. So of course, I tried to ugly them up a bit, but they kept coming out cute and kept getting rejected. I submitted for 25 years, so you could imagine the metamorphosis my style went through. Ultimately I landed on my own style which was the most comfortable for me to draw, made the most sense to me and was easily recognizable.

There isn’t any of your political artwork on your site. Why is that? What inspired the change in the direction of your work?

Yes, you are right. In my pursuit to be a comic strip artist, I took a job as a political cartoonist. It didn’t pay much, but I thought it was a foot in the door. I did it for a few years, how- ever, even though I have a good sense of humor, satire didn’t really suit me. I have filed away all my political cartoons. Maybe one day I will revisit them. Even though my politi- cal cartooning stint didn’t open any comic strip doors for me, working for/with an editor did give me valuable experience in the publishing world, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything

For more of this interview

Interview: Sports Artist Dave Hobrecht

Tags

, , , , , , ,


DAVE HOBRECHT SPORTS ART

Interview with Dave Hobrecht

When did you first think about art as something you wanted to do? Were you encouraged or discouraged by family, friends, teachers, mentors?

I grew up drawing. I was a bit of an over energized kid. A pencil and paper was the only way my mom got some rest during the day! It’s just something I did ever since I can remember. My parents were very encouraging. My mom would take me to the art supply store anytime I wanted and I could buy anything. She wasn’t that way about everything……I asked and never got a set of Drums!!! Ha! …….but art supplies…..I could have anything.

On the other hand when I decided I wanted to be an artist full time…..I had a lot less encouragement and tons of people advising me to not go in to the art world.

Hobrecht Sports Art

Art by Dave Hobrecht

I went to USC and majored in Business. After school I was supposed to work for my parents company. Although I loved the Automotive industry..it just wasn’t me. So with no experience and a wife and three kids…..I quit my job and went into art…100%!!! Like I said most thought I was crazy… expect my Mom and Dad…they said to go for it. My Mom told me it was what I was meant to do!

What kind of kid were you? Where did you grow up? What were your influences?

I was a pretty good kid. Growing up all I wanted was baseball cards an art supplies when I was really young. When I go into late elementary and junior high…it switched to surf, baseball and art… studying wasn’t one of my hobbies!! Sports was an influence on me at a very young age. I loved the team aspect. Hanging with your friends…playing all sorts of sports and games. I had an incredible group of friends…so we were outside from morning until the street lights came on and we had to be home! It was non-stop. Huntington Beach was an outstanding place to grow up…tons of things to do… and everything was a quick bike ride away.

Your style is very unique. Did you work on developing a style or is that what naturally came out of you?

I didn’t go to art school…..so all my training came from trial and error. I swear…I learned so much at my local art supply store. I would hang there and just ask the staff what they used…why and what went with what. I found myself mixing all sorts of items to find my style. My first painting of a wave was done in Charcoal, Pastel, Acrylic, oil pastel, gouache, even some white out! I was just throwing things on a canvas to see what worked.

Eventually….I found I loved the feel of charcoal …..but didn’t love the sandy final look. That’s when I started using a lot of charcoal and brick pastels mixed together. I started grinding them up in to dust form….mixing them together and creating a great combo that allowed me to blend and fade nicely. It was a nice was to get soft blends that could be textured later. That’s the basics on how my style and technique came in to play!

Your work is mainly sports art. How did that happen?

I love sports…the competitiveness, the social aspect, the speed and action. I just love it. Before I was producing art as a job and for others….I was just painting for me!! So why not paint what you love…what you would hang in your own house!! That’s what I did. When I decided to paint for a living…..painting what you truly love helps sell it. When an artist is into his work….it makes it easy to talk with clients that have similar interests! Talking with sports fans is easy…and fun for me. It also makes it easy to show my work within the sports industry. Think about it….how could I sell a painting of landscapes or topics that have no influence on me…..it would be difficult. It wouldn’t be honest…

For More of the interview

 

INTERVIEW EXCERPTS: Robynne Raye

Tags

, , , ,


Interview Excerpts: Robynne Raye

My biological family played only minor roles in my development as a designer, though I do credit my Dad, who was a builder, for giving me a foundation for taking risks. It’s not common that a 24 year old would start a business three months after graduating college. That tenacity and drive can all be traced back to my father.

I met my business partner when I was 19 years old, a sophomore at Western Washington University. He was an early and important influence. At that time, I was studying to be a high school art teacher. I didn’t really have a clue what graphic design was about, and Mike introduced me to the field. He was, and continues to be, my biggest cheerleader.

And like many others, I surround myself with creative people I respect. My husband is a musician and a video producer, and he’s also a very good graphic designer. My best friend lives next door to me and she’s also a talented musician. I enjoy being around them, and trust their opinions on my work.

What kind of kid were you? Where did you grow up? What were your influences?

My family is originally from Southern California, but I moved to Washington state when I was a child. My biggest influence grow- ing up was Dr. Seuss and P.D. Eastman. My favorite book was Go Dog Go. I would sneak off with a copy and read in private because I thought a 12 year old was too old to be reading a kids book.

As a child, I was an introvert. One of my favorite memories growing up involved the celebration of May Day. On May 1st I would pick flowers, ring the neighbor’s doorbell, leave a bouquet, then run away and hide.

Your style is very unique. Did you work on developing a style or is that what naturally came out of you?

My work came together very organically and quite naturally. Of course, when you start you have so many influences and “heroes”in your mind that you would like to emulate. That can create a lot of confusion. It can take a little time to finally focus and embrace who you really are. In my case, it actually happened quite early in the game. But you never stop developing your skills and expanding your visual vocabulary … that’s what keeps you interested, focused, and open to discovering new ways to express yourself.

What markets does your work appear in? Newspapers, magazines, galleries? How did that come about?

My income generating work tends to be packaging, branding and illustration. In the past couple of years I have done work for the New York Times, Hillary Clinton, Shout! (packaging for blu-ray videos) and the Seattle based retailer Nordstrom.

I also create posters for various arts organizations. Since museums and galleries tend to collect posters, many people see me as a poster designer.

For More of this interview follow this link

INTERVIEW EXCERPTS: Sarah Beetson

Tags

, , , , , , ,


Interview: Sarah Beetson

Interview: Sarah Beetson

When did you start doing artwork and who influenced you? Did you get support from your parents, friends, siblings?

As I child, my brother and I spent a lot of time in my grandmother’s pub, entertaining our- selves with coloring books and felt tips (he trained as a graphic designer). I remember winning a My Little Pony Comic coloring com- petition at age 5, and a CCC competition at 8, and a lady offering to buy one of my drawings on holiday in Portugal when I was 11. My mum particularly always encouraged us. And my dad told me recently that he still has a framed realistic pencil drawing of a Coca Cola Can in his office that I did as a child, dated 1989! I’msure that the colorful cartoons and TV of the 1980s, like The Care Bears, Wuzzles, Popples, The Raccoons, Teddy Ruxpin, Punky Brewster, Jem and The Holograms and The Garbage Pail Kids were a big influence on my later color palette. My mum always made sure we had plenty of Disney classics in classics in the VHS cabinet – I think the earlier ones like Snow White and Fantasia were big favourites. I also loved early Tom and Jerry. Growing up in the 80s and early 90s definitely influenced my colour palette, saturated with rainbow, pastel and neon tones.

Give us a little bio of your history (school, family, early jobs, etc) Particularly anything surprising or amusing.

I studied for a BA HONS in Illustration at Falmouth College of Arts in Cornwall for 3 years, gaining a 1st class. It was an incredible experience, being accross the other side of the UK from where I grew up (in Cheshire). Falmouth is a beautiful seaside town, with equal parts students from all corners of the globe, local Cornish folk and sailors coming in from ships – Falmouth is the 3rd deepest natu- ral harbour in the World. with a great creative gang of student talent from around the globe – I lived and worked with students from Norway, Sweden, Greece, Switzerland, and Argentina, and my lecturers were successful practitioners within the field of Illustration. After Falmouth, I spent 4 years in London. I started off interning for Yellowdoor (Mary Portas’ Fashion Marketing agency), Pop and The Face Magazines, and Stella McCartney, where I spent 9 months assisting the head of print design. It was a totally transformational experience – and where I learned the value of extensive research in shapingprojects.Istillusesomeofthetechniques I learned with print and embroidery there within my illustration work today. Whilst I was interning and earlier at uni, I survived cobbling together cash from the occaisional commission alongside jobs in bars and nightclubs. Really the term ‘impoverished artist’ is an understatement – I was living below the poverty line, existing on £130 per week cobbled from numerous bar jobs whilst interning in the fashion industry full time and paying £112 per week in rent!

Sarah Beetson Art

Sarah Beetson Art

I literally ate one decent meal a day. I hung in there finding time to create art wherever I could in between jobs in my tiny shared flat, often working on my bed due to lack of space. By early 2004, my debt and overdraft had reached crisis point and I faced leaving London – when suddenly I was thrown a lifeline. Bartending friends from the punk club Electric Ballroom. I met some amazing creative people in those squats who are now successful actors, burlesque stars, artists, fashion designers and TV tarot sensations! I am so proud to call those people my friends, we came so far together. I developed my portfolio in those squats, and in doing so there followed illustration commissions. I got an illustration agent in Canada and one in London. It took three years, but I got back on my feet. It was so hard at the time, but I’m glad I went through it as it makes me so thankful for where I am today.

For more about Sarah follow this link

Interview Excerpts: Drew Bardana

Tags

, , , , , , , ,


Interview: Drew Bardana

Interview Excerpts: Drew Bardana

“I’d love to be able to support myself fully with illustration sometime in the near future. That’s the ultimate goal. It takes time to make a presence and build a client base. Patience has been key. I’m having fun with my illustration journey and learning lots along the way.”

When did you first think about art as something you wanted to do? Were you encouraged or discouraged by family, friends, teachers, mentors?

It was in high school when I started taking art seriously and considering it as a career option. An advisor at a portfolio reviewsuggested illustration as a focus for my work. I took the advice and pursued illustration at Pacific Northwest College of Art. My family was very supportive in the decision.

What kind of kid were you? Where did you grow up? What were your influences?

I grew up outside of Portland, Oregon. I was creative as a kid, always drawing and making things. Like most 90’s kids, I was very inspired by Pokemon and began drawing all of the characters.

Your style is very unique. Did you work on developing a style or is that what naturally came out of you?

My style has naturally developed over the past 5 years of working as a freelance illustrator. I’ve put effort into keeping the way I draw and create digital illustrations consistent. This allows my work to be recognizable and ensures clients that I can produce different kinds of images with the same look and feel.

Drew Bardana

Illustrator Drew Bardana

You do a lot of actively colorful art work. How did that happen?

It’s a stylistic choice, for sure. When I first started right out of school, my color sense was super dark and overly saturated. I was working for some weekly newspapers and magazines and noticed that my illustrations were printing too dark. I then started using brighter colors and liked the results much better.

Has the computer affected your work? Do you work traditionally and digitally?

I work in both traditional and digital media. Right now I’m working more digitally than traditionally. It’s much faster when trying to meet deadlines! That being said, I’ve created digital brushes using my own art marks. I’ve also created a large collection of drawn and painted shapes and textures to drop into my digital work. This allows me to work digitally, but keep the hand drawn elements, too. It’s fun to take a day and make a mess of traditional media and then scan it all in to use for later.

For the entire interview follow this link

Interview Excerpts: Chuck Pyle “Master Illustrator”

Tags

, , , , , , ,


Interview with Illustrator Chuck Pyle

Interview with Illustrator Chuck Pyle

Charles Pyle was born in Orange County, Ca., and spent most of his growing up years in Bakersfield. He always drew as a kid, for himself and friends. He did illustrations for his high school yearbook and cartoons for the spirit posters. His art heroes were in comics and especially political cartoonists, which he hoped to become.

When did you first think about art as something you wanted to do? Were you encouraged or discouraged by family, friends, teachers, mentors?

It has always been a calling. You get picked by the muse in that it sets you apart from everybody else in class. It was what I was good at, though I did not assign much value to that for a long time.

Were you encouraged or discouraged by family, friends, teachers, mentors?

A Mixed bag. Dad? No. Mom? Sort of. Teachers? Some worried about me, some encouraged me, but let me draw and paint. In junior college, my art teacher, Ray Salmon, said that I should go to art school and suggested that I visit the ones in San Francisco.

What kind of kid were you?

Painfully shy, goofball.

Where did you grow up?

Bakersfield, Ca.

What were your influences?

Mad, comics, sort of National Geographic Tom Lovell stuff, lots of books.

Your style is very uniquely classical. Did you work on developing a style or is that what naturally came out of you?

It came out of discovering Norman Rockwell and Dean Cornwell at the end of art school. Prior to that I tried many approaches to being an illustrator, which was my major. Art should feed you was my attitude.

You’ve worked in a couple different styles. One traditional and one that is more caricature. How did that evolve and was that an asset for you or a problem for art directors?

Caricature was first. I wanted to be a political cartoonist like Thomas Nast, or Pat Oliphant. I want- ed to bring Richard Nixon down. In art school, my teacher, Barbara Bradley suggested that I ‘try illus- tration’ and then spent three years broadening my horizons. The caricature side yet lives, though.

I notice you do a lot of life drawing studies. Do you do that on a regular basis?

Life drawing is key, keeping a sketchbook of the world around you is key to developing a way to process the world around you into what it needs to become in your pictures.

For the entire interview go to The Illustrators Journal 2020 Spring Edition

Interview with Illustrator Coulter Young

Tags

, , , , , ,


Coulter Young Illustrator

The Best of The Illustrators Journal 2019: Interview with Coulter Young

Here are some excerpts from the colorful interview we had with Coulter in our Holiday issue in 2018. Our entire interview with him can be found here

 

When did you first think about art as something you wanted to do? Were you encouraged or discouraged by family, friends, teachers, mentors?

I was always drawing as a kid but did not consider art as a career option until I went to college. In high school I was on the ski team and I raced slalom. My motivation at that time was to go to college in Vermont, ski and study Recreational Management. I arrived at Green Mountain College in July to meet with the Dean of the school and take a aptitude placement test to find out my interests. I placed 95% in the arts and 5% in Management. The Dean advised me to become a Fine Arts major for the first semester and go from there. With my parents blessing that was how I was directed down the path of the arts.

What kind of kid were you? Where did you grow up? What were your influences?

I have been told that I was a laid back kid that you could bring anywhere. Just as long as I had a case of hot wheels with me I was good. I grew up in Mahopac, N.Y. a small town in Putnam County about an hour north of NYC. My extended fam- ily lived in Westfield N.J. were I spent time there during the holidays and my summer was spent down at the Jersey shore. My influences when I was young were 1970’s superheroes, matchbox, Hot Wheels and Kiss.

Your style is very unique. Did you work on developing a style or is that what naturally came out of you?

As a student of Illustration we were all encouraged to come up with our own style to set us apart from another. I did develop a style in my early days and as I recall I wanted to incorporate the elements of water, wind and fire into my artwork. If you look at my earliest portraits you will see a lot of swirling colors and organic shapes.

I’m curious about how you choose what to work on. I imagine your process takes a long time to finish so it’s an important deci- sion to decide what to work on. What’s does your process entail?

Start to finish. Can you give us a short step-by-step? Outside the realm of Illustration were the subject is chosen for you I take on a different process. I am inspired by music. I will choose a musician that has a look that intrigues me and sketch them with pencil and paper for a few days. Once I have a sketch that I like I will create a large painting of the sketch and then start making decision in my head about the color scheme. Once I have that part done I will paint until the painting is done. I like to paint for about 4 or 5 hours at a time.

What do you do to promote yourself and get work?

I try to have at least 2 shows a year to keep my work in the public eye. Other than that I just promote my website http://www.coulteryoung. com