#TMMArtistInterviews

Calamity Fair May 14 2018, 0 Comments

Pretty stoked to introduce our next artist that we met through our homie Tom that runs @ArtForTheSick. Before getting too deep into all the details let’s let this amazing artist John Vochatzer have his say in the following interview - enjoy!


Mural Work by @CalamityFair

TMM:
So John, where are you from, and where do you reside now?

JV:
I was born in Coos Bay, Oregon but spent most of my growing up in Stockton, California and the surrounding central Valley. Now I've been living in San Francisco for almost 15 years.

TMM:
Surfing the inter-webs we were able to check out some of your illustrations, murals, and of course your amazing collage work.
Are there any other mediums that you experiment with as well?

JV:
Thank you! Yeah those are pretty much my main gigs lately but I've dabbled in a little bit of everything. I did a lot of oil painting when I was younger but gradually fell out of that. Then I had a brief stint in film school, and although I quite quickly realized it wasn't an industry for me, film was and still is a big inspiration. Throughout my twenties I played in a few goofy punk bands and made a lot nonsense zines and unsigned practical-joke style street art. I didn't really take myself or anything seriously for that matter and creativity during this period was really just a vehicle for my own self amusement and making my friends and myself laugh. I've definitely grown out of that mentality since. I also write poems and like to cook.


Collage On Wood by @CalamityFair

TMM:
So John, we learned about your work via @artforthesick by first seeing your collage art.

Can you explain your process in which you create your collages? Are there particular types of magazines, books, or other mediums that you typically source materials and inspiration from?

JV:
Yeah @artforthesick! My friend and next door neighbor Tom runs that page. He's a weirdo, I think he's from Guam or something.

Yeah, about 98.5% of my material comes from used books and magazines I find at thrift stores, book sales, ebay, and this really cool store in the SF Tenderloin called "The Magazine" that has a bunch old photos and used magazines for like 35 cents a pop. Recently, as in the past six months or so, I've started scanning images and resizing and reproducing them. I found that sometimes I would be buying the same book over and over because it had so many usable images in it that eventually I decided I needed to find a more economic route. Now I'm hooked on reprinting and all the possibilities that come with being able to mass produce and layer the same image repeatedly. I also have a very meticulous way of organizing and categorizing the things I cut out. Everything gets put into boxes and albums each designated for it's specific type: limbs, tails, fish, eyes, teeth, snakes, wings, etc.


Tongue And Cheek Art Work by @CalamityFair.

TMM:
So John, can you talk a bit about your childhood and how any of the elements from where you grew up may have influenced the work you do today?

JV:
During the nineties when I was a kid, #Stockton was your pretty standard Californian city and as I remember it it wasn't at all a bad city to spend a childhood, during that time at least. That being said I did have periods of what I could only describe as a frenetic growing up that I think really led me to developing my imaginative side. I remember heavily obsessing over comics, trading cards, action figures, cartoons and maybe never even really understanding or paying attention to the stories and narratives that came attached with them, instead always fabricating and making up my own. I think my art as an adult still does this in a way, but now instead with things like #religiousiconography, #naturalhistory, #anthropology, #anatomy, #classicalart... the world via printed media has provided me with these #archetypes and with a foundation to disassemble and rearrange into my own #alternativeworld.

TMM:
That’s fascinating and magnificent how the these elements of your childhood can somehow show up in your work now.

So who were some influential artists for you growing up?


Wheat-Paste Collage by @CalamityFair

JV:
From the time I was a teenager all the way into my early twenties the surrealists were my idols. #MaxErnst, #YvesTanguy, #Magritte, and especially #Dalí. When I was a broke 17 year old I would go steal every book I could about them from the corporate book chains in Stockton and needed to gather every existing image and piece of printed information I could about these wondrous and mysterious people. I spent a good year obsessing over Antonin Artaud alone. I soon later went on to discover the lesser publicized women #surrealists like #RemediosVaro and #LeonoraCarrington who I found out were just as if not even more incredible #painters and also bad-ass #anarchists.

TMM:
John, where do you typically create your work?

JV:
Everywhere I go haha. I manage an apartment building and have a small office that I've used on-and-off as a workspace and my friend and fellow artist #MaxEhrman also has a studio in the building which he lets me use at night if I need to do anything with #spraypaint or #resin or other noxious chemicals but in all honesty the majority of my creative work gets done on my apartment floor. The type of work I do requires having a wide range of materials and supplies at my fingertips and until they day I can afford a large, spacious studio space to myself I've realized it's most practical just to keep everything together in a single place and that so happens to be the same place I sleep. I overall don't mind it except for I'm always having to step around piles of #razorblades and mounds of #paper and what have you.



Wheat-Paste by @CalamityFair

TMM:
Can you talk about some of the wheat-paste work you put out in the street?

JV:
Yeah wheatpasting is something I've always on-and-off done throughout my life. For the most part though it's usually been more lowkey like plastering up show flyers for my band or doing ballpoint drawings while bored at my job and then going and blowing them up at Kinkos afterwards and gluing them around my neighborhood. Only recently have I started to integrate the street art with my actual collage work. Not only did I just feel like my collages were at a good stage that they'd apply well to outdoor street art, but I've felt like San Francisco now more than ever, as I watch it increasingly become more corporate and mundane, needs more weird, outlandish shit out-and-about to keep things interesting and alive. In the past year I've also spent time in Buenos Aires and Barcelona doing paste-ups and am hoping to get out to a lot more cities in the near future.
TMM:
So John are you involved with your art full-time? If not, how are you currently able to balance the work you do creatively?

JV:
I'm definitely not unacquainted with the side gigs and occasional odd jobs haha! Creative liberty is something that is very important to me and consequently I turn down the majority of commission and design work I get asked to do. I almost always regret accepting it and it distracts me from the projects I'd rather be working on. On the other side of that I end up missing out on lot of money because although the fine art sales can be great at times, I'm sure as a lot of artists know, they aren't consistent. Fortunately when I need to I manage to find work that gives me space to breath and be creative and a lot of downtime to do what I want to do.

Eye Full Flower by @CalamityFair

TMM:
What are some of your goals creatively with the work you are creating?

JV:
My biggest goals are just to keep my imagination stimulated and to keep bringing my inner world into the outer world just with more and more precision, abundance, and detail. I also work in so many different styles and mediums that one of my current goals is focusing on bridging a lot of the gaps therein. Sometimes I look back on my work over the past few years and think to myself "holy shit, this looks like it could be the work of five different people." And while I think that definitely has it's merits, I'm really trying to develop all of my facets to a point in which they more fluidly work together. 

TMM:
John, what advice would you give other aspiring artists interested in pursing their dreams of being an artist that you have learned in your own experience?

JV:
Everybody's path to doing what they want to do is different. If there's one piece of advice I'd give though its don't worry about what other people are going to think or say of you. I think a lot of people hold back from their dreams because of lack of confidence and fear of judgement. I myself was really apprehensive about creating for a good period because I kept thinking in my mind that what I was doing was too weird and people would misunderstand it or think that it was just some kind of freak druggy art. I let that go and I let my imagination run wild, feral, and free now and I've grown a lot more and come a lot further because of it.


Beauty In The Flower Eye Of The Beholder by @CalamityFair.

TMM:
If there were any creator that you could collaborate with living or dead who would it be and why?

JV:
This is a bit of a tough question. What I like most about collaborative art is the element of play and surprise so I suppose I'd want to collaborate with someone who'd cater to that. Alejandro Jodorowsky comes to mind but he's such a one-man visionary dynamo I don't even know how that'd work. Maybe Marcel Duchamp? I don't know. 

TMM:
Can you talk about the current print project that you are working on currently?


A Feral Bouquet by @CalamityFair available here.

JV:
Absolutely. I'm doing a pre-order limited edition print release of three of my more recent mixed media collages starting on May 14th this month. The release will be in collaboration with my friend Mike @strange_cessation who does all of my fine art and street art printing and the goal is basically just to help fund my street art and afford to do bigger and better things and in more cities. I'm hooked on full color imagery and as you can imagine the tab on that runs up pretty quickly. Hopefully it goes well and I can keep doing what I like to do and bring big colorful creatures to life out on the streets!

El Obsceno Pájaro De La Noche by @CalamityFair
Print available here.


TMM:
John, how did you get the IG handle @CalamityFair?

JV:
Calamity Fair was actually the name of a zine I was working on in like 2011 or 2012 that I never quite finished. Somehow I had come up on this gigantic stack of Vanity Fair magazines and my idea was to remix them into this surrealist, dissociative zine called Calamity Fair. I opened my instagram account shortly after with the idea of it being a good platform for posting pictures of the zine as I made it, which I kinda did/kinda didn't do and eventually as that idea faded out the name stuck and it's inadvertently become my artist alias. Now I find myself constantly being referred to as Calamity Fair or just Calamity, and although it was never my initial intent I don't really mind it. It fits.

TMM:
Ok now the fun stuff; tell us a joke.

JV:
No thanks, I've just already spent enough time talking about my life.


Wheat-Paste by @CalamityFair

TMM:
Ask us any question.

JV:
Whats your social security number?
TMM:
222-22-2222 - we got an answering machine that can talk to you. Btw that was the best question any artist has ever asked us! Be sure to follow John Vochatzer on IG: @CalamityFair

If you are interested in future projects that The Method Makers and John will be working on together, be sure to sign up for our mailing list or following The Method Makers on IG.

Peace!
The Method Makers

Big Friday - Aka Will Coyner April 06 2018, 0 Comments

We have the best jobs in the world. Connecting with artists that peak our creative interests, learning more about their creativity, and telling you all about it.

We had this revelation that we’re sort of like the David Lettermen & women of #LowBrowCulture (self proclaimed of course - with as little ego as possible).

That said, since we began the #TMMartistInterviews project we’ve had a lot of our good friends & folks within our network introduce us to creatives that they feel deserve the chance to shine brightly before you here and on our IG and Fanpage.

We met Will through another mutual Designer homie Mike Mariano - shout out to @cmmariano for the humbling intro! We had connected at the baptism for baby G @chevyandgrace @guiltybyassociation @the_design_concierge regarding Lucasfilm artists and the possibility of showcasing the work of these talented designers and here we are now telling you about them!

Let’s begin...


(Self Portrait by @big_friday)

TMM:
Will, we were so stoked to have Mike link us to your work. Going through your site and IG and some of the work we’ve seen on the web, we were curious to know more about your background and how that may have somehow influenced your work.

Can you tell us where abouts you are from, and also something interesting about your childhood and where you grew up?

WC:
Certainly, I’m from Waynesboro, Virginia; a small country town nestled in the Shenandoah Valley, next to the Blue Ridge Mountains.

I grew up on a farm, for which I am eternally grateful. I got to play outside in the dirt, daydream for hours and read comics with no distractions.

TMM:
Man that sounds amazing & peaceful.

Can you talk about your earliest memory with regards to creating and how your style may have transitioned over time? By the way how long have you been illustrating and involved with your art?


(GGE by @big_friday)

WC:
Well like most, I imagine, I have been “doing” art since childhood, copying comics and drawing whatever caught my eye. But the first piece I remember being asked to create was a full-scale replica of the Virginia state flag for a member of the family church when I was 15, I think. He did Civil War reenactments and it was for his regiment.

It was my first paying gig, 50 bucks. It took me like a year to complete because I immediately realized I had little interest in doing commissioned art I had no interest in.

In terms of illustrating as an adult, I’ve done everything from pin striping and airbrushing, to logo and t-shirt design, to marketing and concept art for games. I have been working full-time in the game industry since 2012.


(Bros by @big_friday)

As far as style, I really like line drawings with vivid color like comics, or dramatically lit, moody character paintings. I typically go between these two styles in regards to personal work, and it tends to satisfy my visual creative needs. The biggest change over the years has been going from tangible paintings and drawings to digital versions. The process tends to stay the same, though I tend to have less of a plan going into a digital piece as I can iterate and design on the fly, something that is useful for production but often detrimental when returning to physical pieces.

TMM:
So Will, what is your typical process when you create work?

WC:
Ideally, I start with as much reference as I need for a piece, materials, poses, mood, and other artists that embody the style and level of execution I am striving for.  I always start with a drawing, digital or otherwise.

Sometimes its tight, most often very loose, but drawing with paint tends to be the process I ultimately resort to. I’ll draw over the original rough multiple times to refine it, and when working digitally, paint underneath the drawings until it’s time to bring everything in the piece together.


(Timothy by @big_friday)

Then it’s building the forms over and over, mostly monochromatic, glazing color over that, then back into the piece with color and light as needed.  Working with a limited palette of two to three colors for the majority of the process has been my primary way of resolving a piece, as I find I am better able to better understand forms as they relate to light. I find proportions by drawing shapes of light and shadow first, then check for technical accuracy.

My latest approach has been to do ink drawings with pen or brush, scan them, and paint digitally. It’s satisfying and caters to my frequent desire to complete a piece quickly.


(Hell Boy by @big_friday)

TMM:
Will can you talk about any creative influences that you feel transpire in the work that you do?

WC:
I really love classic artists like #Rembrandt and #Caravaggio, #Durer and #Dore, as well as comics from the #GoldenAge to 90’s alternative stuff.  Various aspects of these find their way into everything I do.


(Moebius Monster by @big_friday)

TMM:
Beautiful. So Will, we’re curious about your take on #graffitiandstreetart as a form of expression and creativity? Have you ever personally experienced this on your own creatively or otherwise?

WC:
I have never done any street art, but I think it’s amazing what artists can pull off. The variations of scale, style and location are fascinating to me, and I think it all has a place.  It gives a loud voice for artists and thinkers to expressive themselves.

Getting in people’s faces on a daily basis is important to promote socially conscious ideas and critiques, to influence everyone’s perspective in healthy ways. It’s also important to add “color” to otherwise lackluster environments.

Cities would be drab dwellings without street art - though I do think there is a distinction between art with intention and random tags the violate people’s personal property.


(Pigman by @big_friday)

TMM:
Right, and understood. So in your process of creating the work that you do, is there anyone that you love that your art is created for?

WC:
Anyone finding my art entertaining or inspiring is a huge payoff for me. It’s easy to get critical and stay in my head, forgetting that making art with love transpires that energy to everyone who sees it.

I really enjoy making art for people I am close to who are not artists. Normally making a logo or random design for Joe Average would be demoralizing, but for someone meaningful to me there is an emotional investment knowing that this will be extremely useful for them, and hopefully make them look good. When it works, that’s the best.

TMM:
Will, can you name some artists that you follow or are a very big fan of their work?

WC:
I’ve been really inspired by tattooers a lot lately, like #JeffRassier, #SteveByrne and #JamesBuie. They do a lot of off-kilter, trippy designs in a traditional style that never ceases to entertain and inspire me.  Most of all, with good tattooers in general, the level drawing skill and output is endlessly humbling and aspirational.

I also really love seeing any artist that keeps obsessive sketchbooks. Sketchbooks are the true window to the soul and I have always had a craving to amass as much work in my sketchbooks as I possibly could (a dream that frequently starts hot and dies a slow death), so any artist that is prolific with their sketchbooks gets my motor running.


(Joe Louis by @big_friday)

TMM:
If there were any artist dead or alive today that you could paint, illustrate, and maybe visually create with who would it be?

WC:
I used to idolize #FrankFrazetta, so being able to create with him or pick his brain would cool. #JackKirby would be wonderful to meet and work with. The amount of creative output that guy gave was incredible. He and #WillEisner, they were so influential. #Monsters. Seeing how those guys worked, listening to their stories and understanding their thought processes would be amazing.

TMM:
Awesome, we’ll definitely have to check all these amazing artists out!

So Will, what are you listening to or really into right now? Anyone spectacular that you think we should check out?


(Anna by @big_friday)

WC: 
The new #‪LeonBridges‬ songs are really good and I’m excited for his new album. The new album from #RiversOfNihil is amazing all the way through. I tend to listen to different channels based on mood and conditions. I like the #CryoChamber Youtube for dark ambient stuff, #GimmeRadio for metal and punk, #40sJunction on Sirius while I’m driving, then a mix of things like #‪JamesBrown‬ and #Nails when I’m working out.

TMM:
Rad!

So Will if there were any musician dead or alive that you could work with today who would it be and why?

WC: 
I was a huge fan of #‪TypeONegative‬ growing up and always fantasized about working them somehow and meeting #‪PeterSteele‬. Jamming with #‪RayCharles‬ would be a wrap on life.

TMM:
That would be epic for sure!

So Will, what major project are you working on right now that you’d like to let folks know about?

WC:
I am working full-time on really fun stuff for #DisneyInteractive #Lucasfilm Games, my day job. I occasionally get to do designs for well know bands like #Ghost, which my inner fanboy does giddy dances.

TMM:
Hahaha we'd love to see that giddy dance sometime!
By the way how did you come up with the name @big_friday for your IG handle?

WC:
So I got Big Friday from my friend Adam at a company party years ago. I was trying to convince him to get another drink, he said he was taking it slow because it was only Friday, I clumsily said "well it's Big Friday", and it stuck. Not too dramatic. And I don't drink anymore, haha.

TMM:
Right on!


(Uncle Creepy by @big_friday)

---


You can learn more about Will's work by visiting his
site. You can also follow him on his IG. If you are interested in future projects that The Method Makers and Will will be working on together, be sure to sign up for our mailing list or following The Method Makers on IG.


Never Say Nevr March 29 2018, 0 Comments


(Live from Laguna, Philippines; Walls By
@nevr_lgs #NoseBleedKrew)

We're pretty stoked to present the next artist that we’ve had the opportunity to connect with.

We’ve been following the work of Nevs for the last few years since @basiclee inducted the homie into NBK.

Let’s get into the interview...

TMM:

Ok Nevs, where you from in the Philippines?

Nevs:

Right now, I’m currently living both in Santa Rosa City, and Marikina City, Philippines


(Walls By @nevr_lgs #NoseBleedKrew)

TMM:
And so tell us how you got the name Never/Nevr/Nevs?

Nevs:
I got it from a magazine article of a writer that used to write Never, so since he's writing a new tag so I thought I use it. Then took the 2nd E out cause I'm lazy to do 5 letters, so Nevr. Then facebook won't approve of that name so they recommend Nevs. But the name is also for all my frustrations in life all the "Never" things in my life. So yeah that's it.


(Walls By @nevr_lgs #NoseBleedKrew @quiccs #PilipinasStreetPlan)


(Walls By @nevr_lgs #NoseBleedKrew @quiccs #PilipinasStreetPlan with
love from Pasig, Metro Manila, Philippines.)



(
#NoseBleedKrew by @nevr_lgs #KillTV @basiclee with paint from Marikina, Philippines.)


TMM:
Yo Nevs, from our understanding you get down a lot and are super busy. From following your work these last couple of years it seems like you rep a bunch of different crews. Can you name them all?

Nevs:
I do rep a lot of crews. Let’s see there’s GAK, ECDK, NBK, TFK, PSP & LGS..


(#ThreeFlareKrew By @nevr_lgs)


(
Walls by @nevr_lgs #LagunaGraffSquad)


(
Walls by @nevr_lgs #LagunaGraffSquad)

TMM:
Damn that’s crazy! What do they all mean brooo?

Nevs:
Yeah - Guerrilla Aerosol Kru, East Coast Dead Kids, Nose Bleed Krew, Three Flare Krew, Pilipinas Street Plan & Laguna Graff Squad.


(Wall Art by
@distortmonsters @nevr_lgs #NoseBleedKrew Parañaque City,
Metro Manila, Philippines)

 

TMM:
Dope. So is there any message message your trying to convey with the work you do within each of the different crews?

Nevs:

I'd say for the LGS, it's all Laguna based writers.

PSP, is like a collective, that each member has been focusing on their own. But the main focus still is being the street art. Promoting the sub-culture/culture for the mass.


(Walls By @nevr_lgs #NoseBleedKrew @quiccs
& various writers from #PilipinasStreetPlan)


(Wall Art by
@nevr_lgs #NoseBleedKrew in Sta. Rosa City, Laguna,
Philippines.)


TMM:
Rad. But what about the work you do on the street? Like graffiti for instance?

Nevs:
Well I feel that doing graffiti is political itself.

As for the crews I rep, there are no political agenda/causes, but maybe some. Just awareness of what's happening I guess.

TMM:

Word up Nevs, we can dig it. So what projects are you working on currently?


(Assorted Bando Signage Exhibited by
@nevr_lgs #NoseBleedKrew Laguna, Philippines.)

Nevs:

Current work now at Ronac Lifestyle Center in Magallanes for the Manila Takeover exhibit alongside many talented artists.

TMM:
Dope brotha, much love for taking the time to connect with us. Also appreciate the time given our 15+ hour time difference. Much love and regards to the fam back home!

Nevs:
Peace!


---

You can follow more of Nev’s work
here by hitting the follow button on your instagram app, or signing up for our mailing list here, or following The Method Makers on Instagram. Yeeeeeee!

The Art Of Ryan Barry - @9Monkeys March 24 2018, 0 Comments


(Space Station by @9monkeys)

Recently we asked our community of followers to hit us up with the names of artists that they thought we should know about.


Thanks specifically to @aplaceofsalt - ❤️❤️❤️ we found out about @9monkeys. Giving back we thought we’d share some of his work here.



We caught up with @9monkeys a few weeks ago to pick his brain about his work - Peep!

TMM:
So where are you from Ryan?



9M:
I'm from Berkeley California.

TMM:
Random question; what’s your favorite color?



9M:
I don't really have a favorite color but I really like high contrast, really dark, with really light. WATCH BLADERUNNER 2049!



TMM:
Nice, we'll have to check it out! Wifey is a big fan of Ryan Gosling's work (and face) haha.

Btw, what are you listening to right now - what’s on heavy rotation on your streaming music set?



9M:
I try to listen to everything because music has a strong impact on me. I'm always listening to metal music though, Finsterforst, Equilibrium, Finntroll, and so on. But recently I've been really into the Kill Bill soundtrack. The track from the final fight in Volume 1 epic.



(@Elujay Album Cover Art by @9monkeys)

TMM:
So where do you get your inspiration from in the work you create?

9M:
Always listening to music, I create scenes in my head depending on the song.  Movies too of course, AKIRA being up there, anything from Hayao Miyasaki and most recently the amazing BLADERUNNER 2049.  Other artists, manly European and Asian, Eastern Art are my favorite.


(Album Cover Art for @illzeewill and @kamcooks by @9monkeys)

TMM:
This robot poster is so fucking dope! Was this part of a project you did for someone/commission?

9M:
The robot painting is a poster I did for artists, @illzeewill and @kamcooks. They are big fans of Japanese art and anime and were working together on a collaboration album inspired by those things. 

They wanted to be drawn as pilots of Mechs, and I thought it would be really cool if it was like a Pacific Rim thing where the two of them Pilot the Mech together. I thought it was a cool representation of their collaboration!!

TMM:
Dude so sick! It most definitely was!!


(Comic Experiment Illustration Work by @9monkeys)

TMM:
So tell us about this illustration.

9M:
This is just an experiment. I'm trying to get into drawing comics and telling stories. This page was just a quick sketch of some panels. I had a lot of fun inking!

TMM:
By the way where did the user name @9Monkeys come from?

9M:
Haha there's really nothing behind it. I spent like hours trying to figure out a way for my name work in a user name that I liked and I couldn’t get one they had all been taken. I wanted something unique but nothing was working, and for whatever reason it popped in my head.

My younger sister was a softball team called the 5 little monkeys, sponsored by a local toy store, "The 5 Little Monkeys". 9 has always been a cool number to me, such a clean sounding name Nine - 9monkeys just came out. I tested it, and it worked and I was like fuck it.

I've been asked a lot about where the name came from, I wish it had a cooler origin haha!


TMM:
Haha that’s awesome! We do really dig the name, your work, and think that the story fits well!

---

Special thanks to Ryan for diving deep with us. You can follow more of his work on his IG page and sign up to our mailing list directly to hear more about future collaborations that we may have in the works with him.

We've asked him to take part in our on-going Artist Sketchbook Project. You can follow the project on our site & via the Artist Sketchbook Project's IG account.

Much love!
-TMM