Jimmy Sugg (US)

Jimmy Sugg (US)

How did I discover Jimmy Sugg's art ? Just by randomly searching for specific bands posters on Gigposters.com and, this time, I was in a Weedeater mood ! Do I have to mention that the unique mix of punk drawing influences, comics  and a bit of Minneapolis flavour immediatly gave me the will to contact him ?

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

Gojira has been gracing my speakers quite a bit lately. By the end of the interview you would hear anything from The Sword, Down ,Waylon Jennings, Slayer, Willie Nelson, Melvins, Ween, Bolt Thrower, Neurosis, Tom Waits, Elvis singing ‘In the ghetto’ or even music I have never heard. I usually have a lot of the old classic country heroes and people that beat the hell out of guitars and drums in the mix.

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

I am a just a guy that appreciates cool work. I grew up in the woods surrounded by antiques and old rusty cars. In northern Minnesota there wasn’t much to do but draw and rip through trails on bicycles and dirt bikes as a kid. Maybe occasionally try to get lost in the woods with my trusty wooden stick and my dog. I still love to camp, fish and just enjoy the fresh air. I moved to Minneapolis for easy access to more culture and music. Being around people with more of the same interests is pretty necessary for an artist too I think. I pay the bills by creating designs, ad campaigns, packaging, and all kinds of materials for sorts of clients.

When did you start drawing? 

My first drawing was a fish eating a fish... eating a fish. I was probably between 3 and 4. I still think it is one of my coolest drawings!

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

In college all I had was a basic illustration class and got a degree in graphic design. I always liked to learn on my own with most things in life. Finding illustration work full time is a lot harder than to find work in advertising for me but that may change who knows. I feel that more schooling in fine arts would be a blast but would take too much money and time.

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

I definitely know first hand what it means to be a “starving artist”. Today I am working for a music software company helping develop their brand identity and working on their ad campaigns for the next few months. Then hopefully I get some more calls or emails. I am not good at finding work but it just seems to keep finding me which I thank my lucky stars all the time. I freelance graphic design and it can be very slow some months and other months can be chaotic trying to keep up on deadlines but that’s the business. It is a treat to illustrate band covers and posters because music is more creative and fun than selling a brand. But whoever pays my bills gets my time.

Are you collaborating with magazines/fanzines, regularly? 

Nope, I have only thrown my illustration work out to the public for about a year to see if anyone digs it. Maybe the future holds more collaborations with some cool zines which I would be interested in.

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

I am influenced by everything everyday. Just walking by a tree looking at the design in its bark amazes me. Comic books, cartoons, video games, mechanics and even smells or sounds. Personalities and body language from people can even spark creativity in the characters I draw up. There is a lot of local artists like Aaron Horkey, Dwitt,  and Adam Turman. The list goes on and on that inspire me locally as well as artists around the globe. I also have many very talented friends in the tattoo world that keep pumping out amazing work that push my creativity. We all inspire each other every day by going to art shows or even doodling on a dirty napkin in a bar. Living in Minneapolis I am surrounded by incredible artists with endless creativity. They inspire me to make every line I draw to be better than the last.

What are the principal steps in your work ? 

Concepting, researching, sketching, researching, more sketching, revising, inking, and then add color or redraw in vector on the computer. Then off to print!

Do you do everything by hand or on computer? 

Both. Usually go from pencil to pen then to pixels and vector.

How long does it take you to do a poster? 

Depends on the deadline haha.

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 think anything can be done well with a little bit of style and the right monster chasing it.

For which band have you already worked for? 

Most of my work has been for bands passing through town at the triple rock.

For which band would you love to work? 

I love working with creative people. I don’t care who they are as long as they are cool and sound good :)

Do you choose the artists yourself?  

I just wait for emails to jump in my inbox or my phone to start making noises.

What is the most difficult part in designing a poster ? 

For me coming up with a big idea or concept is the hardest part. Unless I can just pull an old sketch from my sketch pads. From there it just lays itself out in my head and I just have to pour it out on the table in front of me.

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

I think we are all part of a graphic scene whether you make the art, write about it, or just admire it.

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 wish I was more prepared but I just put this up– http://jimmysugg.carbonmade.com. I am no web designer but it will work until I decide what kind of site I want to plan for the future.

The best praise you received lately? 

Someone said that someone else said my work goes well with most fine cheeses.

What can we wish you for the future? 

Health and wisdom is always pretty nice to stock up on. It would be great stay busy with work so I can keep doing what I love. Otherwise I am gonna keep designing everything I get my hands on. If I have a garage sale it is going to have the best sign art and best sales pitches I can offer :)

Thanks for answering my questions and see you soon on the website !!

It is awesome that more artists are getting exposure and it is great to see that your website going well! Thank you very much for the interview.

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