Sunday, April 24, 2016

Interview with Rob Snow

Hello Artists and Art Lovers... after little break we are back, with this very rich interview with multi-talented artist Rob Snow. Firstly it might be just "5 questions" interview, but Rob handle much more with style. So we are bringing the full long, uncensored, unedited, uncutted and mostly striking interview and small preview of his mind-blowing and hyper-realistic works! :) Enjoy!

Hi Rob, Tell us a little about yourself. Who are you and what do you do?
What can be said about Rob Snow, that doesn’t have someone instantly think of Game of Thrones! Well, born and raised in the UK. Was drawing from the age of six, and later, after seeing Star Wars at the age of thirteen decided it’s a career option, better than working in an office. Went to college, got my degree and masters and am now, after a short excursion set up in Greece, trying to make a living at something I really love. I have evolved my skills over the years. With a degree in media production, and an emphasis in animation, I worked for a while in the industry, but slowly realised that I like drawing more than repetitive drawing, so turned to illustration and graphic design. Now, I use my artistic skills in two ways. The traditional use of pencil combined with that of digital skills, that help speed up the process and gives output usable in mass production, but with quality.

What art technique do you most enjoying doing?
It’s really hard to answer that, as art just envelopes me, regardless. I remember once I spent 4 hours sitting on a beach stacking stones end on to create towers. People asked what I was doing, I didn’t have an answer. I was just enjoying the creating. So, since I was born outside the computer revolution age, I have maintained a desire toward traditional media. I love working in pencil; the smell, the texture of the paper, etc. All has some form of interest in keeping the skill alive.

Do you have a favorite piece out of your own portfolio?
A favourite piece. I have many of them hanging on my wall. When I walk past one always catches my eye. It’s not very popular sales wise, but I love the humour in it, related to the art world. It is based on Salvador Dali’s telephone lobster sculpture. I decided to do a reverse aspect and have the lobster manipulating the phone. As like to have them calling Dali and asking what his thoughts were doing his piece. I love the texture on the lobster and the overall feeling I captured.

When did you decide you wanted to be an artist? Was it a difficult choice?
I didn’t really decide to be an artist, it happened. But then again, if you have this choice: lawyer, fireman, train driver, tax man, builder, ARTIST! Which would be the best choice. It wasn’t difficult as I had something inside me that drive me even today, and so it’s like a drug. You get addicted and it’s hard to stop.

What inspires you?
I incorporate Lateral Thinking practices in my work, so I have taught myself that there are ideas everywhere. So, when you ask what inspires me, it’s a case and easier answer to say, what doesn’t inspire me. Everything is a seed to a possible idea. What the brain needs to do is find the keys to build it into something. Many of my ideas have come from sitting on a bus, walking the dog, or being distracted by incidental things.

What do you dislike about the world of art?
This section would be too long to answer in the way I would like. I have spent 20+ years getting slowly better at what I do. Practicing, exploring, punishing myself to consider I am a qualified creative able to deliver quality art. What is annoying is, young people thinking that art has NO process. Get an image, slap some photoshop filter on it, and there you go…ART. That is not art, that is lazy commercial expectations. The way the world is turning at the moment with financial crisis and employment issues, every tom, dick and harry believe that art is an easy option to earn some cash. Regardless of if they are qualified or not. This is a detrimental aspect to the educational program in many schools, if not in all countries. Art has become a tertiary concern that most see as a hobby. When given the opportunity to see that hobby as a money earner, they saturate a professional arena with trite and rubbish. Drowning out the people that actually use this as a way to make a living. Hardly anything is curated in the global open internet arena, and anyone who wants to protect their works finds that there is a total ignorance in understanding the copyright laws. “Oh, there wasn’t a big ‘fucking’ © symbol flashing in red letters over the image, so I thought it was free! But even if there was, I will use Photoshop to erase it, and so I can use it free anyway!” Is the mentality of worthless, talentless people who are unhappy in their day jobs and want to tap into the utopia some of use skilled people have found ourselves living in. Not saying it’s all roses. Life as a real artist is art, pressurising, mentally challenging and also very rewarding. Bt who isn’t going to take the easy route? Steal, copy, and sell…the five minute alternative to skill and lifetime of learning.

Name one aspect of your own work that you feel makes you unique?
What makes me unique? I don’t make money! No seriously, I think it’ the clever twist in the lateral thinking I try to employ. Sadly, I think it’s too clever for most of the populous to see, and that is what makes my images less appealing. Like the Salvador one I mentioned earlier. Many don’t know the Dali piece I refer to, don’t get the title connection to Dali, and ask “Why is a lobster calling Salvador (the country)?” The only thing I can say is it doesn’t stop me looking for these twists.

Name something you love, and why?
Animals! Because they are not humans.

What is your dream project?
My dream project. I have many unfinished projects in my head. Only unfinished as I don’t have the time to complete them. My dream project would be to have the scope to do and earn enough to maybe take a year or two off, to just do my work.

Name three artists you look up to the most?
Without a doubt the top of the list is Vincent Van Gogh. His life seems to have a similar path to mine. Torment and struggle and no income from something there is so much passion for. He is the antipathy of art in my mind. Others who make me feel cool about seeing their art and knowing about them. Hum, that’s really hard. I love Goya. I took my daughter (aged 7 at the time) to see a retrospective of his etchings at an art museum. Over 150 of his works. I was there for 20 minutes on each piece telling my daughter the story and history of them. Loving the lines, loving the fact I can see them live for the first time. I have a dream to go the “House of the Deaf Man” in Spain to see the mural of the dog he painted as a recluse. Another? Hum, I guess I would have to say Bartok the composer. I hear his music and it throws out feelings of the same kind of life that Vincent would portray if he played music. It is a parallel to the crazy and insane world that art is all about. “If you are an artist JUST to make money, then you are not an artist; you are a salesperson.”

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given?
Give up! This is what my art teacher told me, when I asked to join the art classes. It was the short, sharp bluntness in this negatively that made me find the fight to prove her wrong. I hope I am doing a good job?

What are your professional goals? Do you have a clear vision of where you want to be in five or ten years?
As long as I am not planted in the ground, I would be happy just to be doing what I want to be doing. Last year I did over 100 pieces of art. If my productivity could be that good each year, and I learnt from all of them, that would be a great way to focus wholly on my work and not do commission work.

What is the key to staying motivated?
This is a question I think when I try to teach my students. To me it’s easy, there is no brick wall to motivation. each and every day I get up I look forward to being creative. When I am ill, I almost have to be tied to the bed to rest. Motivation is never an issue, and I am really glad I taught myself the lateral thinking process. So, the key to staying motivated, is decide to be an artist or not!

What is one common misconception people have about art and artists? Hahahaha! It’s a fucking cliche, but they think we are lazy, that the natural skill is a free service, that we charge for 5 minutes work, like a weeks pay. That people really don’t know what goes into the real creative process. It is a job like anyone else.

What is the toughest thing about being an artist?
Living with other human beings.

Who is your No. 1 fan?
Nobody has really come forward to say they love my work in any great respectful way. Liking stuff on social media doesn’t make you a fan. Having a wall of your art, talking to the artist, etc. Makes you a fan. I have no stalking entities like this, so the social adoration is nice, but needs to be reciprocated in real appreciation. I couldn’t say, who is a real fan.

Do you believe creativity can be learned?
Everyone has a natural ability to do something: It’s called aptitude. Some have an aptitude for creative things. Like some can be doctors, some can be plumbers, some can be sales people. This can not be taught and is what filters the chaff from the wheat. What can be taught is the parallel necessity, which is technique. The issue nowadays is that due to the ease of using computers with (potentially) creative applications on them, people thing that art and creativity is just technique. It’s not, it’s an inherent aptitude that allows to to understand colour, composition, perspective, form, light, and so much more, that is obviously a flaw in many commercial artists these days. But because they have a following they are setting a new, dangerous trend in ‘non-artist’ art. Like I am capable of building a house because there is a pile of bricks in front of me? Well I could try, and it would look like a house, but maybe it would be dangerous, not look good and I couldn’t convince people to live in it. Apply that to art! That is what the internet does. Makes people think they can build houses, and convince them due to the aspects of social interaction online. I am looking for the day that all these bad houses come crumbling down.

What is one thing you learned as an artist that you wish you had known when you were starting out?
That it is the most involved, hard and life controlling thing you will ever do!

How do you battle insecurity?
I went to foundation course before doing my degree. This knocked out my insecurities from the start. I was very shy and insecure before. Protective of what I drew, etc, but foundation was like boot camp for artists. You’d have your work torn up, you’d be told you are useless, etc, and it was basically there to make you decide if you can take all the shit that will come. Because you do get the shit. One thing I see on some POD sites. People deleting critical comments, because they don’t throw flattery at something that was not even their own creation. Its like that expression; “If you can’t stand the fire get out of the kitchen.” So, I’ve learnt to hear everything that is said, and turn it to fuel. Fuel to be good at what I do. Ask my daughter, she thinks I’m crazy and doesn’t like being in public with me, because I may do something unexpected.

What's your message to the World?
Love animals and the planet! We need them (all of them)!

Robs's Networks
Website: www.robsnow.org
FaceBook: www.facebook.com/robsnow.illustrations
Store: www.robsnow.org/shop/

Thanks a lot Rob!
Artists vs. Distributors

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Interview with Barruf

October is almost gone but we are here with Monthly Interview with our next special guest, legend and very talented artist; Barruf.

Tell us a little about yourself. Who are you and what do you do?
Hi, I’m Cédric Duarri D’Haene; but artistically I am known as Barruf. I was born in Manresa (Barcelona). I am a self-taught artist, who has begun his artistic career at late 2012, rather at early/mid 2013, in the wake of experiencing some surrealistic moments in my life, and who decided to devote himself exclusively to art in late 2014; so I am like a newborn in the art world. I consider myself a person with personal and artistic curiosities practically insatiable and who perceives art as an inner need: to express, communicate, understand myself and create.

What do you dislike about the world of art?
There are some things that displease me about the world of art: I don’t like too many people take advantage from the talent of others for their unjust enrichment, as for example, companies engaged in the sale of art or products with designs from artists, and these artists receive only symbolic or ridiculous payments while the company keep big money. I hate the people who call themselves artists and who only have copied, plagiarized, or directly have stolen artworks or designs. The world of art is sadly full of this kind of people. I hate too, the big companies who tolerates plagiarism, and the theft of designs, and who have huge benefits thanks to this illegal practices. For example: Amazon, Aliexpress, Ebay,etc. These companies earn money for every sale made on their platform by third parties; and they are full of designs and artworks sold illegally for these third parties. Since these companies earns money with this fraudulent activities they don’t implement measures, or if they do, not in an effective way to try to avoid it. So the legit owners of the intellectual rights or trademarks lose potentially lot of money. It is difficult to compete against oneself products, if other ones are selling it illegally much cheaper.

I could name many more things that I dislike from the world of art, but probably the aforementioned are the ones who outraged me more. But anyway, in general terms I am in love with art and its world.

Name something you love, and why?
The animals, the nature; since ever I’ve been attracted for the natural world, flora and fauna, this led me to study the biology career (which I left on my last year). I am a lover of life, and to be in contact with animals fills me, relax me, makes me feel that it all makes sense. The place where I feel more comfortable is in the forest, feeling the breeze between the trees, listening the songs of the birds, observing, with luck, the animals who live in, the smells, the calm; I love to feel part of it.

What are your professional goals?
My main professional goal is to continue improving day by day, and not to stagnate. I don’t know if I have a really clear vision of where I want to be in five or ten years, but I know I would love to be exhibiting habitually in “big“art galleries, and to earn enough with my artworks to focus with body and soul exclusively on creating; inasmuch as, for now I invert most of my time on promoting in social media, managing web pages, adapting my designs to different formats, ratios,etc. I mean: instead of spend all the day trying to get a return on my works or designs, I would rather invest most of the time on creating and be able to delegate these “administrative” tasks to third parties.

How do you battle insecurity?
It is difficult to combat insecurity; what it works pretty well, for me, at the moment, is simply try to ignore it, try not to listen the inner voice that pretends to refrain you from exhibit or show your work. We have to no fear ridicule, whatever you do you won’t like to everybody; so I try to focus on me instead of overthinking on what people would think or say. When you lose part of this fear, insecurity is minimized and can help you improve on your creations.

Barruf's Networks
Website: www.barruf.com
FaceBook: www.facebook.com/barruffoll
Store: www.society6.com/barruf
Store2: www.society6.com/barrufdesigns

Thanks a lot for your wisdom and time Cédric / Barruf!
Artists vs. Distributors

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Interview with Celandine

We are happy to bring our first "Interview of the Month". Very talented artist Lidija Paradinovic known as Celandine find some precious time to small walkie talkie with us.

Dear Lidija, please tell us a little about yourself. Who are you and what do you do?
My name is Lidija but I sign my art as Celandine. I make patterns that are so elaborate and complex they sometimes resemble seamlessly repeating illustrations. I get very excited about bridging that gap between illustration and pattern.

Do you believe creativity can be learned?
I think there needs to be some natural predilection, but creativity definitely grows and develops with lots and lots of work. In fact most of the things people tend to think they need to have before they can start making art – skill, motivation, creativity – all of these grow out of the work you put into your art. First you start making things. Then you stick with it for a really long time. Then you get good.

What do you dislike about the world of art?
The thing I like the most is also the thing that sometimes scares me – there are no real rules. This is wonderful, because it means we can all make our own paths. You can build a career drawing on walls, or making felt cupcakes, or upcycling and painting old furniture, or making custom mermaid tails. If whatever you’re making is exciting you, you can bet it will excite other people too – there is a niche for everyone and everything. On the other hand, when you’re starting out you’re full of questions about ‘how things work’ in the art world, and nobody can really give you any answers. Copyright law is confusing and difficult to enforce. Art pricing and sale terms are all over the place, it’s difficult to pin down a standard. Artwork can sell for milions of dollars, yet most artists will often get asked to work for peanuts, or for free. It’s a chaotic world and that means you need to put more work into making your own little bubble of order inside it, otherwise you’ll always be thrown about by the tides of other people’s ideas.

Name one aspect of your own work that you feel makes you unique.
It’s difficult to pin down what makes someone unique, because there is so much art out there that whatever you do is surely being done by a bunch of other people as well. But I’d say the most recognizable characteristics of my work are a sort of dense, layered, complex and detailed look, with lots of details and intertwining elements, and themes that combine traditionally beautiful things with things that aren’t considered traditionally beautiful, but do carry their own elegance and appeal – often those are slightly menacing things like predatory fish, snakes or insects. I’m always drawn to that conversation about what is beautiful, and where do we draw the lines between that which fascinates us and that which creeps us out.


What is your dream project?
I have lots of dream projects. I’d love to design a series of custom wallpapers for a high-class boutique hotel in some spectacular tourist location. I’d love to make classy furniture upholstered with my patterns. I’d love to design packaging for fancy food products like quality chocolate or tea.

What is the toughest thing about being an artist?
Dealing with the fact that there is no objective measure of quality in art that everyone can agree on. Every single client is like a new puzzle to solve – and you have to become a bit of a mind-reader to make sure you can live up to their expectations of you. The art artists like the most is often not the same art that works best for the client’s needs.

Also sometimes you need to be able to see that even though they are asking you to do a job, you are not the right person for that particular job. Art is not like most other commodities, and can’t be traded according to standard rules of business. There needs to be some strand of psychological connection between the client and the artist if you are to have any hope of bringing their vision to life. And that particular voodoo takes a while to learn.

Celandine on social media:
Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/celandinedesign
Twitter - https://twitter.com/probablypretty
Pinterest - https://www.pinterest.com/celandinedesign/
Behance - https://www.behance.net/celandine
Website - http://www.celandinedesign.com/


Thank You Lidija!
Artists vs Distributors

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Print on Demand: Word by Ulf Härstedt

"This world harvest a great deal of amazing artists. Some have had great success and some have not. I'm guessing that many artist minds around the world wake up every morning and dream of getting their art out in the open. But are held back by their thoughts of it being impossible, due to the financial part of opening a art shop, clothing shop or something like that.

And then they trash the dream, and move on with their lives and not letting us see their beautiful works. This has been the truth for a long time, until now.

POD is great opportunity for all the great artists around the world that don't have the finances to start big. POD have the possibility to transform a dreaming artist at night, into a real artist at day. This is the possibilities of POD, and NOT the way POD works automatically. Even if the world of POD is a minefield of shady people, it COULD be the key out for a dreaming artist."


Ulf Härstedt
Photographer

Site: www.happymelvin.se

Monday, June 8, 2015

We Are Under Construction...

This site is dedicated to the voices of artists who struggling to find good art distributor in "Print On Demand" world. We are now here to protect and serve; and to build a better environment for art buyers, art lovers and mainly for artists and distributors, and our future. So we will recommend the best "Print On Demand" sites selected already by artists and by best experiences, quality, behaviours, customer and artist support and so on. Stay tuned, more to come!

Artists vs Distributors