What from your childhood still affects your approach to design today?
Growing up on a farm in the Rural Midwest completely informs every decision I make in regards not just to art but most every aspect of life. I learned early on that pride in craftsmanship is paramount to quality work - weather it’s drawing a picture or building a mini ramp or transplanting sumacs, you have to put in the time because if you rush, it will be obvious to someone.
I think coming from manchester/the north of england has an impact on my design, I am very patriotic and really get inspiration from the likes of factory records and the music scene from Manchester.
The sign I mentioned in the last question! And an early reading book I had that was type set in Gill. When years later I discovered Gill Sans I realised that I’d been ‘influenced’ by my reading book.
When I was a very young child I lived in Germany and I remember going on many field-trips and being in a different culture. I think that had a positive experience.
I think a lot of my art is affected by my childhood, especially now after moving back to the place where I grew up a few months ago. I think a lot of what I do is influenced by my environment and my environment now is the same as when I was a child.
I suppose it would be the interest in shared experience. I used to get excited about the notion of doing something that would actually connect with people. In elementary school I’d create games, puzzles, activities, and the like, with the notion of doing just this. I think that with sites like MakeFive (www.makefive.com) we’re doing this as well.
Ninja Turtles. I like to think of myself as a “Michelangelo” don’t you think guyzz?!
It is still the same creativity, the same mentality. It’s the same desire to shape your own environment. As child, your environment is still small: drawing tiny comic books in your bedroom, handing them out to your aunts and uncles during birthday parties. In high school, this environment becomes larger, photocopying small punkzines, and drawing shirts for your friends’ hardcore and metal bands. After high school, art school becomes your environment. Then you get your first assignments, for example for a local rock venue, and suddenly you see posters that you designed all throughout the city you live in. Then you design a stamp, and the whole country becomes your environment. It’s one continuous line. The main principle remains the same: trying to add something to your immediate environment. The only thing that changes is your environment.
When we are working on the graphic identity of an international art institute we feel the same excitement as when we were children, creating stuff in our bedrooms.
Air Jordan’s, Bo Jackson, obviously MTV, bands like Public Enemy, N.W.A., Dre, Anthrax, Metallica, Michael Jackson, Prince, Nirvana. From before, Elvis Presley & Johnny Cash. Andre Agassi & Mizuno sports gear.
Flip Flop Flyin
Nothing specific, but there’s a feeling of Britishness in my work, I think; which only really came to the fore once I left the UK.
Being curious, still asking too many questions.
Everything, I’m sure. We didn’t simply appear at this point in our life. It was all a progression.
I always draw on place mats or napkins, and always will. Sketching is essential to me, and I never leave home without my pen and sketchbook.
I gained design fundamentals from constantly drawing as a child. I learned how to draw from comic-books, which means I drew lots of “overly developed” female super heroesholding machine guns and plenty of ninjas cutting people in half. I also got involved with figure drawing and leaning to draw realistic figures from my mind. This was, and stillis, very hard for me and stretches my abilities. I never draw anymore,except for sketching design concepts. Ipretty much suck at drawing today. Since I don’t practice, I have lost the skills, but I haven’t lost the visual foundation drawing provided for me.
All the media I ever consumed during my childhood still affects me profoundly. It makes up the foundation of the design language I still use today. Lots of Japanese cartoons, 16-bit video games, jazz, nature magazines, science fiction movies, early computer user interfaces, rock album covers, astronomy books...
My father was a fisherman. He ran a boat off the coast of New Jersey and I made quite a few trips out into the Atlantic with him. I really loved the way things on the boat looked, and worked. The compass in the wheelhouse, the mechanics in the engine room, the fishing equipment. There was a functional aesthetic that still has an effect on my work.
Painting and drawing with my father/ a family appreciation of good craftsmanship
I suspect everything.
Please Let Me Design
Damien: I note every small event, quote, name or anything on small (or bigger) notebooks. It’s related to memory: to leave a trace of things about what, where, how they happened. And to find a way to structure this information, bring them somewhere. I think I’m obsessed with notebooks and writing things down.
Pierre: I like to build things. I like to find an explanation. I like to find rules in the things around me. I like to count. I like to know how everything works. I want to understand. I like to take risks even though I know it’s gonna hurt. After all, I’m still the same young boy running around with scissors in his hand. Wink.
Have fun... play.
It is written in my book, "Bike Story As Ex".
I guess other subjects that I was interested in at school - Geography, Art History, Economics
Fill/Stroke is a collection of three individuals who have always been good at collecting content, but never really good at sharing it. We formed in early 2008, and have been honored to interview some of the greatest designers of our time.
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