Sean Mort (UK)

Sean Mort (UK)

If you like your gigposters full of flashy colors and, lets say, full of small details all around the sheet, then, for flashy colors, go for Kozik (for example) and for details, weel, surf the blog you should find soemeone. But if you like clear, apparently simple and light drawings, full of acertain kind of peace and harmony, then Sean's work is definitly what you need. Somewhere between John Knoerl and, hummm... Ben Chlapek there is definitly a space for this great british ;)

Hello, of course as every Crewk interview, first question: what are we listening to when we come to visit you?

Midlake - Bamnan & Slivercork

Can you tell us more about yourself, who are you, where are you from, what do you do?

My name is Sean Mort, I'm a designer & illustrator from near Manchester and now I live in Leeds.

When did you start drawing?

From as young as I can remember I was drawing ninja turtles, disney characters and my own football shirts

Did you follow any course or did you improve by drawing in the margins of your schoolbooks?

I kind of gave up on drawing in school as it was more like fine art, then I picked it up again when I was around 20 after a conversation with some guy who was working on a book cover. I genuinely didn't know it was something I could do for a career until that point. I know, I'm an idiot

Today are you living from your art, or do you do something else for a living?

I work part time at a merchandise company but this is good as working solely for myself has sent me crazy in the past. It's nice to interact with human beings from time to time. That's why the poster shows are so good

Are you collaborating with magazines/fanzines, regularly?

Not so much at the moment, I do bits for people but I have found my graphic work has slowed since I started doing posters. This is ok as the posters are a great source of inspiration and are way more fun but I'm looking to get back into design more as I enjoy the process of working with a great client

Where does your influence come from? Is there any artists/graphists you particularly like, what are your influences?

I guess I would be called a minimalist. I loved my childhood, I wasn't abused or anything and I try hard to bring that across in my work with pastel colours and playful imagery. Artists I love include Josef Muller Brockmann, Airside, Two Ducks Disco, Saul Bass & Paul Rand

What are the principal steps in your work?

Listen to music, sketch ideas, start working on the computer, print

Do you do everything by hand or on computer?

I start by hand but it's mainly only sketching, unless I'm going for a rough look. Which I rarely do.

How long does it take you to do a poster?

Sometimes it's a really quick process, sometimes it can be horrible. I'd say two days maximum from brain to computer but if I'm on the ball I can get something made in a day. I spend a long time just staring at it afterwards just to make sure it's right as it's something I have to stand by for the next year or so

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 could give it a go but I wouldn't want to. It would be a painful process for everyone involved

For which band have you already worked for?

I've been lucky to have worked for many of my favourite current artists already. The National, Fleet Foxes, The Antlers, The Magnetic Fields, Band of Horses and Death Cab For Cutie are all great bands

For which band would you love to work?

The Decemberists would be a particular highlight, there is so much going on in their music that I think it should be easy to communicate my feelings within a poster

Do you choose the artists yourself?

A lot, yeah. It's nice when an artist chooses me but that can sometimes lead to inspiration issues. I was recently asked to do a poster for The XX, it was a disaster from start to finish. My work doesn't fit their mood and their mood doesn't fit my ears. I should have just said no, rather than feel like a failure at the end of a long, unsuccessful process. But, I learned from it and it's all good

What is the most difficult part in designing a poster?

Getting it out of my head into the finished form is the hardest part. It always looks great in my head, it takes a while but I think I eventually do my brain justice

Do you think you are part of a "Graphic Scene", if so who else?

I guess so, as I am a graphic designer I just don't know any other way of approaching work. I love artists with a more graphic style, like Telegramme &; Army of Cats

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? & I will also be doing a load of shows all over the place in the next year

The best praise you received lately?

I got a lot of lovely comments at my recent Chicago show and I'm never ready for them but honestly my favourite thing was getting to know Landland and them wanting to swap posters, it warmed my heart in 100 degree heat. Dangerous.

What can we wish you for the future?

More poster shows and hopefully more great bands to work with would be just perfect

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