1. Where are you from and how long have you been illustrating?
I am from a lovely town in New Jersey called Haddonfield. I’ve been drawing since I was little, I guess I’ve been “illustrating” since 2008.
2. I love Philadelphia, but from your perspective why is Philadelphia, an up and coming city for art/design/illustration?
Well from what I can see there are a ton of talented people, both young and old, that are doing it for the love of the game. That combined with the low cost of living, and the pre-existing DIY ethos for which Philadelphia has become known and loved for, creates a genuine enthusiasm/energy that is, in a word, awesome.
3. The thing I really like about you is your persistence to continue to make art. If illustration work isn’t coming in, you just start making things and setting up gallery shows for yourself and selflessly for lot’s of friends and artist you wanna rap with. What sparked that idea and how are you able to curate shows/get into gallery shows?
Hey thanks, I really like that you really like that. I guess I wouldn’t say it’s an idea as much as it’s a mindset, I just feel compelled to make stuff, express myself, tell stories, and keep it moving. I don’t really like to sit still or be stagnant.
My new year’s resolution last year was to make more friends, so I made sure to do that and go out to as many gallery shows and pertinent events as I could. I made a record-breaking number of friends last year, shattering my long-standing record from first grade, which invited me to participate in gallery functions. It’s amazing what a few beers and some conversation will do.
4. More and more I see that your tackling projects that are either on the web or are animated projects for the web. Are they getting in touch with you or are you getting in touch with them? What’s the process like building pieces of art to be handed off to an animator?
Those two projects were done with Oscar Productions, which is run by one of my childhood friends Ian Maguire. He approached me to storyboard and create the artwork for those projects.
The process was longer than a standard illustration or design project because there was a lot of preparatory storyboarding involved. Once the piece was laid out sequentially, we then began the familiar process of sketches, and then to the final. Also the finished art files had to be meticulously layered and named to avoid confusion, and even then there was still a lot of communication between the animator and myself. The most ridiculous part though, is that I still use Adobe CS (trade secret) to Photoshop stuff so I had to group all of the layers manually as opposed to selected them and hitting apple+G! ha!
5. I really love the honesty and rawness of your artwork. Can you talk alittle bit about the evolution of how you began making images the way you have now today? What are your thoughts on the new images your working on?
I think that today it starts the same exact way it did when I was younger, with drawing. The variety of end products, and the path that I take to arrive at them, is what is continuously evolving for me. I’m getting a better idea of how to build the bridge between my initial idea and the final destination. In my most recent work I am starting to introduce more of a personal narrative, projecting aspects of the culture that is immediately around me onto my artwork.
6. Your work tends to be both beautifully designed/hand lettered, and conceptual. I was wondering if you could talk about your process in coming up with idea’s for a piece of artwork, either for an illustration or a personal piece.
Thanks! I think a lot, I draw a lot, I am constantly looking around for interesting visual cues, I listen to people, and I ask questions. The older I get the more I realize that I prefer to keep record button permanently pressed down, as opposed to blocking out time in my life on a calendar to do sketches and systematically approach creating art.
7. What kind of music do you jam to when your skate boarding the streets or working on a piece of artwork?
Ha, that depends on my mood for both. I listen to a lot of different music from aggressive to mellow, from rap to old country music. It depends on the season, and how I’m feeling.
8. Genos, Pat’s, or Jims cheese steaks?
Pat’s, I guess, however; with prices on the rise ($9.00! for a wiz with!) who really knows anymore.
9. Dream Client(s)
Hmmm, you mean like the ones that approach you because they love your work, don’t give you grief about the fee, and then a few months later commission more art work because they like you so much? Yea, I think I’ve heard of them before.
10. What are you working on these days?
Oh man, well I’m in a group show about dinosaurs that opens next week, I’m working on an installation that will melt as the weather gets warmer, finishing up screen printing covers for a new ‘zine, I just started a commission of album artwork/web banners for a local rap trio, and I told my littlest sister I would make her a wooden bunk bed for her dolls as a birthday present, this last one could land me in some hot water if not completed in a timely manner.
11. Why not paint your illustrations instead of taking a mixed media/digital approach? Is it beneficial in how you think about making the art work? Is it important to learn how to make images digitally or is it just another way?
I like Photoshop because, if done right, I have complete control over all of the elements in the image. This makes it easier to change, fix, or re-color things if necessary. I don’t think it’s important to make the actual image on the computer, but knowing your way around Adobe’s Creative Suite is a good to know regardless.
12. Any advice for illustrators/artist breaking into the field?
Be ready to work extremely hard and push yourself with every project, if this is surprising to you then that is bad.
13. Any advice for the Vet’s out there.
Nope, I know better.
14. Final word?
If ever there was a blog title that summed up my life more than this one, I have not found it.
Thanks a whole lot Brad!
All work under ©opyright by Brad Haubrich
To see more of Brad's Rad work go to: Plaidbrad.com