Recently, I have been contacted on Gigposter.com forum, as I was introducing my blog, by Erin Page who noticed that there was few girls answering my interviews. This is (was ?) true, and this is the reason why I am so pround today to have her interviewed on the blog. I would like to take this opportunity to thanks her for her answers but also all the contacts she gave me.
Hello, of course as every Crewk interview, first question: what are we listening to when we come to visit you?
Can you tell us more about yourself, who are you, where are you from, what do you do?
I grew up in Peoria, Illinois and moved to Chicago after college. I work as an accredited professional silkscreen printer at Screwball Press and I also work at Ork Posters. I have my own poster company called Kill Hatsumomo Prints and I play lead guitar/vocals in a local band called Alma Negra.
When did you start drawing?
I started drawing before I can remember. When I was 5 years old, my Mom told me about a drawing contest for the 1st birthday of the first killer whale born in captivity, Baby Shamu. The prize was a all-expense paid vacation to Sea World and I told my Mom I was going to win it for her birthday - and I did. I'm legally the whale's "godmother" now hahaha!
I used to sit with my grandmother's magazines and draw the models for hours on end. I branched out, of course, and ended up receiving a B.A. in the Arts with a concentration in Intaglio print-making at Illinois State University where I also studied lithography, wood and lino block prints, metals and jewelry, ceramics, and wood.
Today are you living from your art, or do you do something else for a living ?
Today, I am very proud to say I am living from my art and it just keeps getting better all of the time.
Are you collaborating with magazines/fanzines, regularly?
Not regularly, although I have been featured in BUST and Farmhouse magazine.
Where does your influence come from? Is there any artists/graphists you particularly like, what are your influences?
I love Dali, Mucha, William Blake, Durer, Alejandro Jodorosky, Ann Arbus and James Nachtwey. As far as contemporary artists go, I am a huge fan of Sylvia Ji, Dr. Lakra, David D Andrea, Malleus, and all of my Chicago poster artist peers (too many to name). I am inspired by many things - I love Middle-Eastern and Indian architecture, antiques, bleakness, the dark arts, bones/fossils/shells/teeth, Mexican folk art - especially dia de los muertos centered imagery. I am always inspired by things that are paradoxically disturbing and beautiful at the same time. I love things surrounded by mystery and the macabre.
I generally have an idea and begin sketching - I usually have multiple frames of reference to add to the perspective I want to draw from. I start with black and white and fill in with color later.
Do you do everything by hand or on computer?
I generally do everything by hand, but I am learning more things on the computer.
How long does it take you to do a poster?
It truly depends on the level of my inspiration and what the specific job calls for.
You have a very distinctive style, are you doing only what you feel like or if tomorrow somebody asks you an oil painting with horses running out of water with a sunset backdrop, is it a problem or are you up for it ?
I generally do what comes from my own imagination, although I often work with other peoples' ideas in my own style. I don't necessarily like to shape my work around someone else, but I am willing to collaborate.
For which bands have you already worked for?
Priestess, Maserati, Zoroaster, Eyehategod, the Melvins, Harvey Milk, Torche, Minsk, Yakuza, amongst others.
For which band would you love to work?
Right now, I would really love to do some work for Earth, Nick Cave and PJ Harvey. I love them all and they have been truly inspirational to me as an artist and musician.
What is the most difficult part in designing a poster ?
Learning to be less self-critical is the hardest thing I grapple with. I am surrounded by so much talent that it is difficult to not be hard on myself as an artist but it forces me to grow and that is beneficial.
Do you think you are part of a "Graphic Scene", if so who else ?
I would definitely say so - we have a Chicago Printers Guild here and everyone in 'scene' is more or less supportive of each other - it's a great community to be a part of.
A bit of self-promotion, take advantage of it, it's free, where can we see your work , on the web or in real life?
www.killhatsumomoprints.com or on facebook, if you look up Kill Hatsumomo Prints, I have a business page. I'm also on gigposters and I have my work featured regularly in various spaces and galleries.
The best praise you received lately?
A fellow artist, David Welker, recently purchased some pieces from me and told me how much he loves my work and that was wonderful!
What can we wish you for the future?
I hope I continue to grow as an artist and produce as much work as possible. Eventually, I would like to have my own shop with a storefront and/or gallery space to showcase my own and others' work.
Last question: Do you know anything about french rock posters scene ?
Not as much as I should. However, we did have a couple French guys printing in the shop while on tour last summer - I believe their band was called Begon Vert