interview by becca biggs
A lot of your artwork, namely your illustrations, seems to have dark undertones. Where do you find your inspiration? I really like the look of old horror film posters. I actually like them more than the movies themselves. How they’re portrayed and executed by the illustrator gives a great sense of wonder to the film. It’s the closed curtain before the show, if you know what I mean. I don’t think I really reflect how much they inspire me through my work, though I do look at them quite often, and you’d be surprised at how many I have saved on my computer for reference. Other than that, I find a lot of inspiration from the Tales from the Crypt comic books, along with the Creepy series as well. I find the same sense of wonder in their covers as I do movie posters. Recently, I’ve also been looking back on my old Magic: The Gathering card collection. You’d be surprised at how many amazing creatures and ghouls are brought to life on those tiny cards. Flipping through those for a few minutes before drawing really gets my imagination going.
I know you recently started a skateboarding and apparel line, too! What sparked the idea for that? Yeah! The Haunted officially dropped around October last year. It was a weird start for sure. I didn’t anticipate it correctly, and there were a few let downs, and a few pick-me-ups in the process. When starting something like this, you really don’t know the way it’s going to be accepted or how people will react. Once you’ve taken the first step and you’ve gotten it out there, the idea of the company grows more and more in your head, and soon it encompasses almost every second of your day. With that being said, I told myself that I didn’t want to subject it towards just clothing. Of course, that got me thinking more, and I’ve finally come to the conclusion that I want The Haunted to primarily be a skateboard and apparel line. I’ve been skating for almost ten years now, and filtering my drawings and the little monsters I create into something I’m just as passionate about is just obvious to me. I woke up one morning and asked myself: Why hadn’t I thought of it before? Every time I grab a new skateboard, to me, the graphic is always the most important part. I’m a visual guy, obviously, and I think a lot of skateboarders out there really care what’s on the bottom of their deck before it gets scratched up. I think in the long run, it defines who they are as an individual. In reality, that’s what skateboarding is. Individuality. So what motivated me? Skateboarding, and everything else the sport represents. The clothing that’s worn while doing it, and the artists behind every skateboard I’ve owned. It’s collective, I suppose. Though the very first and main reason why I started any of this is because I wasn’t going to let my drawings and practice go to waste. I drew all throughout high school in my math/history/science classes, and if I wasn’t going to walk away with knowledge of what they tried to teach me, I sure as hell wasn’t going to waste away what I spent my time in those classes doing.