Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Introducing Sam McKenzie!

There are some very common themes in your work, what else inspires you other than girls, ghouls and guitars?
I guess I'm mainly influenced by people. Not really specific people, just people in general. I really enjoy trying to get certain personalities across in my drawings. Trying to get lively characters and expressions, with all those little quirks that people tend to have. The girls and ghouls bit falls under this. I love drawing all kinds of folk, really! But pretty girls and ugly men are the most fun. I love Music too, and my love for Rock n' Roll comes across pretty clearly. Stylish movies, TV shows, Old Movie posters (especially for the typography), Comics and such are big influences too.

How would you define your style?
Well, I’d say it's quite cartoony. In fact, I'm trying to head in a more cartoony direction. I've been incorporating many cartoon-type characters into my usual kind of work. I think it's a nice contrast. I find it hard to specifically define my style, as I'm so close to it. It's kind of hard for me to step back and take a fresh look at it. I'll leave that to other people.

Who are some of your favourite artists?
So, so many. I'm very lucky to have close friends who also draw and create excellent work. It's amazing how inspiring that can be, feeding off of each others work. People like Karl Kwasny, Dave Collinson, Philip Dearest, Ben Cee, Mel Stringer and more. I know I'm leaving some friends out, sorry about that! As for international artists, I really like Rockin' Jellybean, Jamie Hewlett, Jordi Bernet, Brandon Graham, Sheldon Vella and much, much more. It's not fair to make me choose and name names.

What are your favourite mediums to use?
I like ink on paper mostly. I draw everything by hand and then do all the colour work in photoshop. I've developed a bit of a process over time, involving a lot of sketch work. Getting a pencil and just hacking out shapes and lines, real messy. Then taking parts of that and using a lightbox to do a second pass (or more, if needed). Gradually tightening up the lines and form. Then I'll blow it up to A3 size and again using a lightbox, will ink the drawing. I prefer using thin pens, like a .01 fineliner. Then I take the finished inks in to photoshop and clean it all up and add colour. The process tends to vary a bit every time, really.

Are there any plans for a
compilation of your art?
I would love to work towards an art-book of some sort! Or do some comics. That would be amazing.
I have actually compiled some 'zines in the past. But they were kind of last-minute things, just to get my work in to peoples hands.
But I'd really love to put out a book of some sort! Hopefully in the not-too distant future.

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