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Monday, March 23, 2009

Interview with photo artist Erik Johansson

I came across Eric totally by accident a little ways back. Now I know alot of people don't think alot of photo manipulation, this young man showed so much creativity and imagination that I knew I had to share him and his work with all my readers.

How long have you been into photography? I got my first digital camera when I turned 15, I discovered photo manipulations quite early but I've learned almost everything the past 2 years.

What inspired you to start manipulating your photo's?
I guess that I wanted to improve reality.
When did you start working professionally?
I don't know if I can call myself a professional, perhaps from now.But I have learned most of the things I know about manipulations and photo the last 2 years.

Have you recieved any formal training?
No not really, but there are a lot of good tips out there on the world wide web.

I really like the piece "long road" can you give us a little insight into what inspired it?
I had an idea about making roads in different ways, the initial idea was to use a truck instead of a human. But this just felt better in the end, and became symbolic in a sense to depending how you interpret it.

Who would you say has been your biggest influence?
I get inspiration from everywhere, but I really like Salvador Dali and M.C. Escher.

I know you are still very early in your career but tell us about some of your accomplishments.
I have done some work for an advertising agency in Gothenburg but nothing big yet, but I have a few things going on, the future will tell.

What is your favorite piece by another artist?
I like a lot of different stuff, but one of the first photos I saw that got me in to retouch was this one by Sven Prim.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Interview with master sculptor Kris Kuksi

Well yet another night of stumbleing around the net has exposed me to another mind blowing artist, Kris Kuksi. His works are a very organic nightmare landscape. I find his sculptures to be extremely attracting, everytime you look you see something you missed before. I know each of you will love this mans style and imagination.

When did you first realize your passion for art?
KK: At a very young age, as far back as I could remember. My grandmother had some typing paper laying around so I would grab them and scribble all over.

How would you describe your style in your own words?
KK: My style is blending the old world with the new. A sort of hellish world filled with beasts and demons with a touch of classical influence.

Where or have you formerly studied art?
KK: I have two degrees in Painting from a small university here in Kansas, and I also studied old master painting techniques in Florence and Austria a few years ago. But as far as sculpture, it has all been my own explorations and learning. It truly has been a journey that includes engineering knowledge as well as many challenges.

What is your favorite medium, sculpting, painting, graphite etc and why?
KK: I enjoy them all, however, I do enjoy sculpture the most because I am builder more than anything. Painting is more of a special time, I only do it when I really feel relaxedand calm which hardly ever happens!

Your sculptures are mind blowing. Where do you draw your inspiration from?
KK: Mostly from books and museums that include old European art collections. However, I do enjoy large industrial structures such as refineries and skyscrapers. I love thesesorts of objects with a lot of confusion and detail, piping and layering. I admire the symmetry of many temples and cathedrals, especially the temples of India

What artist would you say has had the most impact on you as an artist while you were learning?
KK: H.R. Giger was perhaps the most significant though I had only seen his work in books. Ernst Fuchs was another artist who had an impact on me as well--artists andothers that I had been exposed to while I was studying in art school.

Which of your own pieces would you say you have gotten the most satisfaction out of completing and why?
KK: Imminent Utopia by far because it was such a huge project both with time and size. When it was completed there were thousands of pieces that comprised the wholething. It was impossible to have counted the parts and hours involved. The completion time took about a month more than expected.

Tell us about some of your accomplishments as an artist.
KK: Well I've been both in over a hundred exhibitions as well have landed several magazine features world wide. Another thing I am happy about are that many of my pieceshave been purchased by prominent collectors and celebrities. So all in all I've done a lot already in a short time and the exciting thing is that there are things still unfolding. I'm 36 now and have many years ahead.

Who is your favorite artist and why?
KK: The American architect Louis Sullivan because of his design sense and the skill at which he was able to apply his creations to be built and celebrated. He could add themost elaborate addition to the dullest and most boring looking building and it all looked good.

Now if you would pick 3 of your own favorite pieces and provide links.
KK: A New Divinity is my top favorite: It sums up what I feel about art and the world in general.

The Deadly Sins is the second: The vices of man are all accounted for in this wonderful diorama.

And Imminent Utopia is the third: The place where I want to live after I have been shrunk down to an inch tall.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Interview with Markus Rippka of "Black is Beauty"

I absolutely love Markus's skull designs, they have a fun fresh rock-a-billy feel to them. Personally I like them best in the gold and silver metallic.

What inspired you to start designing tee shirts?
I started as a painter about ten years ago ( oil on canvas ).
To make my designs known to a bigger audience, I decided to work with computers and
began to design images for T-shirts.
This is a very interesting way of developing art, because the images look totally different on cotton than on canvas.
And – I think it will boost sales, of course.

How long have you been in the industry?
About a year ago I recognized Spreadshirt, a German T-shirt printing company, where I can sell my designs and run my own T-Shirt shop.

What advice would you give someone just starting out?
This is a difficult. There is no easy answer to that question.
The output of High Quality designs is not the main problem, if you`re skilled.
The right marketing of your stuff is very important to achieve enough sales.
And it helps having good friends, like Jay from VAN TRIBE FASHION, giving you
support and advice. He promotes me and my shop. You know, it`s a tough business.

What style has worked best for you as a designer?
Definitely my skull-designs. There are many different ways to design skulls, there`s always a new idea for another skull design, they are my “classics”.
And, people will always love skulls.

Where do you see your company in 5 years?
I hope I made my work popular by then to make many people in America and Europe wear my Shirts, to be able to make a living out of it.

What is your favourite design?
My favourite design is Skull Circle 8 ( from the Skull Circle series ).
But I love them all, so its hard to choose.

Who has bee your biggest influence in your designs?
The biggest influence? My friend Dirk, he is a Tattoo artist who did some tattoos for me and my wife Tanja. Inspired by his work I started transforming my tribal and skulldesigns for tees.

What is your favourite designs by another artist?
A question I cannot answer easily. I love the style of my friends Jay and be-him of VAN TRIBE. They have many motifs I like very mutch, such as:
The new VAN TRIBE logo, blood kiss, the witch, the hula skull, the skull punk, tiki three, breeding demon, the bad ass gun, devilish, and many more.
And one of your designs Thundergod is also my fav.
3 of my favorite designs: