This week's fashion on the blog seems to be "moustache" guys. After the dutch moustache guy, here we are with the poster newbie moustache guy. But it wouldn't be fair to summarize Jay Briant to his moustache, so let's speak about art, records covers and so and ...
I love music and am always exploring a wide variety . . . so you might hear anything from Iron & Wine, Lou Reed, John Coltrane, CAN, Brigitte Fontaine, Buck Owens, Battles, The Feelies, Steve Reich, Miles Davis, Goblin, Atlas Sound, Television, Georges Brassens, John Prine, Bix Biederbecke, Hauschka, Sun Ra, Sonic Youth, Stereolab, Sydney Bechet, Bon Iver, Yo La Tengo . . . and, of course, Jesse Sykes & The Sweet Hereafter!
Can you tell us more about yourself, who are you, where are you from, what do you do?
I’m originally from The Tall Corn State and have been living and breathing for over 45 years.
When did you start drawing?
As soon as I could. I remember the nuns at my pre-school praising my drawings.
Probably a bit of both. I always carried a clipboard with paper everywhere I went when I was young. I remember drawing dirty pictures for friends in elementary school, and also going to a class at the local art museum that my parents enrolled me in.
Today are you living from your art, or do you do something else for a living ?
Sort of. I am a graphic designer and illustrator with much of the bills being paid by doing concept & design development for motion graphics.
Are you collaborating with magazines/fanzines, regularly?
No, but that would be cool. I love looking at the zines on Nieves (http://www.nieves.ch/).
I am inspired by all sorts of work, including music, architecture, film and design. I especially love the work of people such as Mike Mills, Geoff McFetridge, Paul Rand, Saul Bass, Andy Warhol, Charles & Ray Eames, but there are countless others. I have a little blog called aesthetic interlude (http://www.aestheticinterlude.blogspot.com/) on which I periodically post work that I find interesting or inspiring.
What are the principal steps in your work ?
I usually start by looking through work that inspires me and that usually sparks some ideas that I then roughly sketch in my sketchbook. From there I might start doing some more serious sketches, sometimes on the computer, sometimes by hand, depending on the direction I’m going. For the Jesse Sykes poster I got it pretty tightly layed out using Illustrator and then printed it out on a b/w printer. Then using that as a guide I drew all the elements except the type by hand using brush and ink and scanned the pieces into Photoshop for the final compostion.
I do both, usually starting by hand.
How long does it take you to do a poster?
Hard to say, but I am pretty slow, because I’m hard to please.
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 am usually up for it, if it’s something that sounds interesting. I feel like I am pretty versatile and can work in lots of different ways. If i’m not into the idea, it is a bit of a slog for sure.
For which band have you already worked for?
I realized in doing the poster for Jesse Sykes & The Sweet Hereafter, that I hadn’t really done a proper screenprinted rock poster before. I’ve done album and CD packages for various bands, including three for Jesse Sykes, and a recent one for Fan Fiction (http://www.reverbnation.com/fanfiction), along with flyers here and there, t-shirt designs, self-initiated art prints, and posters for other events, but had never had the opportunity to do a proper gig poster. I would LOVE to do more!
There are many, but doing a poster for Sonic Youth would be pretty damn cool, since The Velvet Underground or Miles Davis aren’t options anymore.
Do you choose the artists yourself?
I just had an opportunity with Jesse Sykes & The Sweet Herafter, because I had just recently finished the album & CD package designs for Marble Son (http://www.theconnextion.com/jessesykesandthesweethereafter/jessesykes_product.cfm?CatID=48&ProdAutoID=8085). I still don’t fully understand the process for getting the opportunity to design the posters for gigs. I wouldn’t want to do it unless I had the band’s approval. Maybe someone can write me and explain the process.
Coming up with the concept, because I personally think it should somehow relate to the band or the show it is featuring. While there are many super cool posters out there that seem to have nothing to do with the band or the show, that seems a bit lazy and lame to me.
Do you think you are part of a "Graphic Scene", if so who else ?
No, there are just so many people doing amazing work out there. If there is a scene, it is pretty much world wide.
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?
My website: http://www.purposeco.com/
My online shop: http://ohiowagoods.bigcartel.com/
My blog: http://www.aestheticinterlude.blogspot.com/
A reviewer of the Jesse Sykes record, Marble Son, described the cover as perfectly capturing the music within.
What can we wish you for the future?