Stoner Jo (Jo Riou) FR

Stoner Jo (Jo Riou) FR

Once again, there's a kind of french touch flavour today and the site, but be sure this is not the only reason why Jo is here for us. Definitly not, his perfect music taste, his love for beer aare certainly what made me wonder to have him onboard, together, maybe ( ;) ) with his huge talent and the pleasure it has been to do this interview !


Hello and thanks for this interview

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

Music is my dope so it's very rare if you listen nothing at my home... In this case i'm probably dead. I listening all kind of music but probably 80% of my sound is Stoner/psyche rock!

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

I'm French, 31 years old, living near from Paris. I'm an independant graphic designer since almost 2 years, and I make especialy posters for the Stoner scene in France, and when I could around the globe. Before that I was webdesigner in a shitty start-up during 5 years.

When did you start drawing?

As far I can remember, I begin very young. As a lot of people. Around 8/10 years I began to create my own stuffs and make some copies of Japan anime or French/Belgian comics. It's only around 12/14 I'd discovered American comics and began to take some Art courses at college.

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

The both ! I take a specialised cursus in High School to learn « Arts Plastiques », and generally all the margins of my schoolbooks get a messy graphic aspect also sometimes that gone outside of the margins, a lot of tables had suffering because of me. After that I was make 3 years in specialization from Visual Communication / Multimedia création, and go to work as a Webdesigner.

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

That's the plan. But it's not so easy. Currently this is only a few months that my activity becomes really consistent and allows me to consider the best for the future. Outside the posters I realized some album artworks, I have a lot of demands for various merchandising, and I have a lot of concert organizations projects, tour bands and exhibitions for occupy my time and try to make little money. Actually it's common for me to do odd jobs to complete my bills at the ends of month.

Are you collaborating with magazines/fanzines, regularly?

My collaborations stop at the music scene. I am part of an association: "ARE YOU STONED INC", with whom we set up gigs in South-east of France, Thing I also do independently to help bands from my buddies or just by passion. For graphic stuffs I'm setting up an exhibition called « Stoned Eyes for Rock Ears » around graphics and Stoner Rock which I will invite many of my comrades!

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

Mainly my influences come from american comic books, Art Nouveau, Russian propaganda posters, old inked engravings and of course all the psychedelic posters arts of the East Coast of the United States during the 70's and also all the artists from the Golden Age of Heavy Metal (the magazine). But anything can be inspirational, a photo, a book, some street-art, an idea, a dream, the music, an item... No bundaries to the imagination, it's very important to not be boring for a creative activity like ours.
But it's clear i've got a big list of inspirational artists very various but I can quote : Mucha, Moebius, Shepard Pharey, Hayao Miyasaki, Mike Mignola, Jack Kirby, Hokusai, Gustave Doré... And many of the actual graphic posters designer, but I could continue this list for days and days... So next question.

Do you do everything by hand or on computer? 

Actually the both. All the basics of my drawings are done by hand. First I realize several sketches, I chose one, I work the positioning of my various elements. Generally this phase there is either very detailed or it's just me who knows what it is. Then I ink in accordance with pens or chinese ink. And any final dispositions and colors are made by computer, using Photoshop and Illustrator. But for me it's impossible to do something without the handmade phases even the photomontages I realize throught by the sketch part!

How long does it take you to do a poster?

It depends on the level of details I put into a creation. But that does not exceed 15H generally spread over 2 days.

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 I politely explain to the person who made me this request he didn't see my work for asked me such a request. I don't think I've a defined style but I love variety in my references and in my work, but that kind of request it's not for me. My rule is that : if you ask someone to do something for you, you need to know the style and the work of the person, it's like a tattoo. You're not going to ask someone specializes in black and white portraits for you to make an abstract colored one ...

For which band have you already worked for?

I am fortunate to be in Europe or stoner scene is in full development like in France, Spain, Greece and Italy and where many bands and projects are taking place. So that's the biggest part of my job. So I have the chance to work with talented and various bands like PLANET OF ZEUS, DOMADORA, 1000MODS, DOT LEGACY, LIBIDO FUZZ, MOTHER SLOTH, the music label THE SMOKING GOAT, WOODWALL, and many others with whom it's a pleasure to work.
For bigger bands I have the other chance to participate in full of festivals and gigs, thanks to Are You Stoned Inc. that its own festival BLIZZARD'S MOUNTAIN FEST and JENS HEIDE and FREAK VALLEY FESTIVAL, and Obviously the STONED GATHERINGS gigs in Paris where I began 2 years ago. Thanks to all of them, who opened me a lot of doors and full of possibilities. With them and thanks to them I could work for : KADAVAR, RADIO MOSCOW, SAMSARA BLUES EXPERIMENT, MONKEY 3, THE FLYING EYES, NAAM, ENOS, MIDNIGHT GHOST TRAIN, NIGHTSTALKERS, ALUNAH, VIDUNDER and much more...

For which band would you love to work?

I dream to work for band like Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, Pink Floyd, The Who, Ten Years After, Deep Purple, The Animals... and so many others, but it seems it's too late... No seriously it's not possible to make an exhaustive list, they're too many...

Do you choose the artists yourself?

Yeah I just realize I've got this chance too ! By thinking even the posters for venues or festivals I have the choice of the bands I could do! The rest of time it's me who contact the bands with whom I want to work. Or bands contact me and I chose if Yes or Not i want to do their projects.

What is the most difficult part in designing a poster ? 

Clearly find the idea who correspond to what expect the band, or their universe and something you can create... When this is ok, no problem at all... If not I don't do this Job haha !

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

From the start I think the fact to making rock posters place you in a type of « scene ». Maybe the proof I do part of something like that is your interview today Ahahah! But it's not an official stuff for me. I'm very close of my friend Antoine from Headbang Design with whom I share lot of friendship and projects. I get along with other artists also working on the same music scene than me in France like Arrache toi un Oeil, Will Argunas, Alexis Dr Big Al, Seb Bismuth... And that's cool. Maybe the exhibition project I've got will be the occasion to officialised something about that, we'll see !

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? 

You can follow regulary my work and stuffs on my facebook page : and to see only my works without all the crap of facebook hive got my page here : . I should soon put in place a more comprehensive site where people can buy my posters, but also T-shirts, patches and I hope many other things.
2015 will be a big year for me and you could met me in a lot of places : April at the DESERTFEST BERLIN, I hope in May at my Exhibition in south of Paris, June at Siegen for the FREAK VALLEY FESTIVAL, in July at « Le petit VAR WEST Festival », August in Greece at the « FUZZTASTIC PLANET FESTIVAL » and I hope so many other places !!!

The best praise you received lately?

Recently My Sleeping Karma that asks me to take a poster I made for them and turn it into a T-shirt because their fans and them like it too much ! Also the leader of Monkey 3 who wrote me to say he really loved my poster I made for them to the Freak Valley Festival. And again thanks to The Freak Valley who give me the possibility to make a poster for a 1969 band's and legend of Krautrock in Germany aka BRÖSELMASCHINE and discovering a lot of people asked me to print the poster right now because they love it hahaha... If it could be like this every day Ahah!!!

What can we wish you for the future?
You could wish me 1) all my projects succeed 2) I get really live with my work 3)And it happens to me full of good things again! Anyway this is what I wish to you haha!

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

Thanks and may the force be with you !

1 commentaire:

Seo Sea a dit…

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