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INTERVIEW WITH MR ADRIAN MILLS

Artist: Mr Adrian Mills

From: Rugby ,Warwickshire

Current location: Suffolk

Current happiness levels out of 10: 7

Favorite film: Singing In The Rain

Favorite Book: (Novel) The World According To Garp (John Irving), (Children’s book) The Red Tree (Shaun Tan)

Favorite colour: Orange

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You say you aim for your art to be ‘contemporary’ can you go into that in more detail?

I try as time goes on to change my style, this isn’t a conscious thing but my work changes as I change my art materials, for example I have just changed pens and my work has become more finely defined.

You create images for both adult and children – do you have a favourite audience to create for?

I think it’s a very fine line from the children’s work and adult, as much of them are characters’ I do enjoy working on the adult themes as I sometimes think maybe my work is too dark for children but I have a very exciting project lined up so lets see how dark I can go.

You have studied art to a Masters level – did you find that imperative for your skills? Can art really be learnt?

Before I started my masters in which I need to finish, I thought I was a good artist but I have learnt so much from that course. I have learnt to draw as view, to see life as stories and watch the world in a different way. “Art can’t be taught but the way of you seeing art can.”

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Where do you find your inspiration?

I find my inspiration from every day life, I always carry a sketchbook around with me…since I can remember. I am always writing down questions and what I see on my travels, and you never know when they may pop into your head. I also did a project in which for a year I drew everyday things. This helped my skills as an artist and encouraged me look at the world a different way. I sometimes wonder if everyone looks at the world in a different way.

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Have you experienced a creative block/or black hole?

Yes I go thought many creative blocks as life gets in the way and work. At the moment I have many projects and cant get moving on them.

So what do you do to get out of it? Tips?

Normally a day in a busy city normally works, seeing art and creative people. This helps me to start believing in myself again.

Has it been difficult to carve a career as an artist? Was it a childhood dream?

Yes, I have worked every day to cultivate my skills as an artist. I have always drawn and was lucky as a young boy to have a friend who loved art as much as me. I always knew I would always have the skills as a creative and have always spent a lot of time with artists, so I knew that is what I would do. I couldn’t imagine what life is like without art?

What do you think you would do if you weren’t an artist?

When I was young I wanted to be a stunt man as I watched too much of the The Fall Guy but I never learnt to drive or… a time lord! I work in care so I think I would have been a nurse as I like caring and helping people.

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Your favorite current artists?

Like music it depends on my mood but I am a big fan of Turner, I love his big spaces and moods. As for children books I love Shaun Tan books, his writing and energy and the great Catherine Rayner . I have just found a great children’s artist Chris Applehans and look forward to seeing his future work.

What is the most important thing in life?

To be nice to everything and leave something nice and good behind for people to talk about.

What is the most beautiful thing about art for you?

I sometimes speak to people who say they are bored and don’t know what to do, I feel I can not be bored as I create images, dreams that it seems people can’t get out in any form. To feel that mood when you are drawing is so special.

Do you feel like you’re on the right path?

It’s been a long path as I work part time on the other days… so every spare minute I create my art. I have an exciting project in the works so I do feel like it’s all finally coming together at the moment.

What would be the dream?

To travel the world, for people to like my work and give up my part time job and draw every day.

Looking at your life from ten years ago – are you where you wanted to be?

I did think I would of got my art out by now but I am happy that I am still trying.

The next big election is coming up in England – do you have any hopes or thoughts on this? Artists can be influential… no?

I am very interested in Politics and have strong views, having been a young man in the 80s. I have always been interested in the daily politics cartoon which still runs in the UK. It must be a hard job to do… to make a comedy out of the politicians. Or maybe not as politics does seem to be a comedy most days.

Favorite quote to leave us on:

“If you live to be a hundred, I want to live to be a hundred minus one day so I never have to live without you.”

A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh

Links to work:

http://adrianmillsillustration.blogspot.co.uk/

http://adrawingolifeaday.blogspot.co.uk/

http://creativepool.com/adrianmills

Enjoy! Becki Bx

 

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PHILOSOPHY: ‘THE ART OF PROFANITY’

Article by Duncan of/from Philosophy On Ice

A small indicator of my respect for any given person leans on their tendency for using profanity, and their acceptance of it as a linguistic necessity for communication. It is no accident that those who are most interesting in life usually are partial to using ‘bad language’; that term being one which should no longer apply to such diverse and useful words that only the babyish prudes of this world wince at in public.

Let’s start with blasphemous words – the easiest to discredit as offensive. In meaning, they are usually synonymous with cursing, often with a sense of incredulousness. ‘Jesus Christ!’ one might exclaim, as they see their beloved kitten dive into a blender without scruple. ‘Thank God that Whiskers has not been reduced to mincemeat!’ they might add, before comforting the kitten at once, and licking it with a fresh tongue as a weird means of interspecies bonding. Most people will have had the experience in life of being given a good telling off by religious individuals who hold an eerie sense of religious propriety, defending as they do so that ever more lenient third commandment (for which the punishment is death, by the way). On these occasions, however, you can have good reason to politely tell them where to stick it.

ALBUM PREVIEW: Dance Spirit ‘The Sun Also Rises’ – 

Aside from being invasive on your belief system, whatever it may be, these zealots are failing entirely to acknowledge the true usage of these words. When I exclaim ‘Jesus!’, I am not calling for the return of the prophet, or addressing a pubescent Spanish boy. What I am really saying is ‘Ouch’, ‘Wow’, ‘Oh no’, or one of various other uses for the curse. Whilst trepidatious about being stoned to death for using the words themselves, it is understandable that these individuals would not want to indulge in using the words, but one ‘should’ not impose this absurd notion on others.

Let’s talk about ‘Fuck’ – everybody is intimately familiar with the word. Here we have a word that is so diverse that it can be annexed to any sentence. ‘Fuck off’, ‘Where’s my fucking Lego’, and ‘Get the fuck out of my conservatory’ are sentences that are all rather incoherent linguistically but of which simultaneously are all perfectly understandable to us. If you have Lego, that is. The point is that the word itself is stripped of all meaning in most cases, and simply used as a tool for emphasis in language. ‘Get the fuck out of my conservatory’ provides a much more austere, uncompromising request than the dithering, pathetic ‘Get out of my conservatory!’ alternative. Aside from this, there is a more obvious connotation of the word. The general meaning of ‘having sex’ is attached rather frequently; genitals becoming a childish focus and a running theme through most ‘filthy’ language. ‘Twat’, ‘Piss’, ‘Shit’, ‘Cock’, ‘Dick’, ‘Arsehole’, ‘Cunt’ – the more sensitive the area of focus here, the more offence that ostensibly seems to be caused.

If you were wincing as you read that brief list then do not worry, it is entirely natural – I winced a bit whilst writing them. It is because we are taught from an early age, as a matter of simplicity, that these words are bad in themselves. Which they are not – neither phonetically, nor as a word with a direct reference to a body part. ‘Bad language’ is entirely based on the context in which particular words are used in any given situation, in which we can deem them rude or offensive, or indeed humorous, emotional or profound.

Profanity, of course, can be inappropriate too – it is clearly a situational judgement. Should we liberally be swearing at or around children? It would probably be wise that we do not. Not because of the idea that, stripped of meaning, these words are bad, but simply because it is probably not a healthy environment for a child to be constantly surrounded by sexual references, which profanity often has attached to it. In the same way that we censor violence, some things are prudently not exhibited to credulous minds that may or may not understand the meaning of such things yet. Exempting children though, if you feel you are not enough of a grown up, and you believe you must in fact be censored from these things, you have probably not actually emerged from that childhood squeamishness at all.

The bottom line is; we should not be treating ‘bad’ language as bad at all, but simply as another tool available to us within the art of language. Whilst these words are not always appropriate, if you can learn to use them correctly, they can be incredibly effective and incalculably useful to us. The only reason they should ever be described as ‘offensive’ must be in direct relation to the rest of the words uttered within the sentence, within the context of that situation.

Do you agree/disagree with Duncan? Tweet your thoughts or leave a comment! @ohdearyme @PhilosophyOI #ohdearyme 

ohDearyme takes submissions… do you have something to say? Get in touch…. beckiburrows@gmail.com

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INTERVIEW WITH ‘JAY J WRITING STREETPLAY’

INTERVIEW WITH: Jay J writing Streetplay

From: Scotland

Current location: London

Current happiness levels out of 10: 10 

Favourite film: The Matrix 

Favourite musician: When I spray….  Beethoven

Favourite artist: Dali vs Banksy 

Favourite book: ‘The Power of Now’ by Eckhart Tolle

Favourite colour: Green

SkullDuggery

  “Skull Duggery” Medium: Mixed Media, Spray Paint on Canvas with gloss varnish

Brief synopsis of your art: My art reflects where I am at today, my mindset, my challenges and my perceptions of the society that we live in.  

London opened the world of spray art to me. After 15 years in Scotland I craved adventure, I knew there had to be more. The days of running around my village spraying my OWN name, however exhilarating were over.

I travelled and hustled and grew, finally coming to the conclusion that the career I had forged in a senior management level position within London’s corporate world had left a void. I should have realised when I had more fun at the whiteboard than any other place, occasionally leaving some random works of art for my colleagues. I fell in love with the reactions.

Through a chance encounter, I found my education at Graffik Gallery a street art gallery on Portobello Road. I was in the thick of it, bathed in inspiration from teaching graffiti workshops, curating shows to stretching canvas and being constantly surrounded by amazing works, exhibitions and artists.

I consider myself an emerging artist, commissioning and selling works internationally to private, public and celebrities. I use a mixture of media, work freehand and use stencils. Spray paint, fat caps and London’s streets have given my life….. life.

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INTERVIEW:

You sell and commission work for Graffik Gallery – what advice would you give to artists putting forward their pieces? The best advice I could give is find your own style and believe in it.

What do you look for in a piece of art? The artists voice, what are they trying to say? 

Huge fan of? Schoony, he is one of the good guys!

What sort of pieces do you like to create? Is there a correlation throughout your work? Whatever inspires me, that’s the beauty there are no rules. I will definitely run a series of works from a subject that has caught my imagination. 

Favourite inspirational quote? Marilyn said it best, what a girl 🙂 

“I believe that everything happens for a reason. People change so that you can learn to let go, things go wrong so that you appreciate them when they’re right, you believe lies so you eventually learn to trust no one but yourself, and sometimes good things fall apart so better things can fall together.”

What advice would you give to aspiring artists who are struggling to start out? Reach out, if you don’t know ask. So many amazing people in this world… you will find them when the time is right.

thelastsupper

                                      “The Last Super” Medium: Acrylic Spray Paint on Canvas with matt varnish

Where do you envisage yourself in ten years time? I see myself with my own gallery in Australia, making art, teaching workshops on the beach and surfing ahhh!

Knowing what you know now…. would you go back to the corporate world and trade in your career in art for a huge salary if it was offered? I would rather have my soul. 

Will you be voting in the next election? Don’t get me started Becki. 

Jay J does private workshops, for individuals and companies… his workshop CV to date includes the likes of Facebook, Google, Microsoft and Fred Perry to name a few. Please find his contact details below..

art@street-play.com

Instagram: jayj_streetplay

Twitter: @jayjstreetplay

https://www.facebook.com/streetplayartist

www.street-play.com 

Have a great week 😉

Becki Bx

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INTERVIEW WITH URBAN ARTIST ‘Fin DAC’

An interview with one of my favourite artists Fin DAC (DAC stands for Dragon Armoury Creative) aka Finbarr Notte.

From: Ireland

Current location: Dublin

Current happiness levels out of 10: 8

Favourite film: Bladerunner

Favourite musician: Imogen Heap

Favourite artist: Aubrey Beardsley

Favourite book: The Beach – Alex Garland

Favourite colour: Grey

Brief synopsis: Non-conformist urban artist. Creator of Urban Aesthetics

You’re a self taught artist – have you found there is a snobbery between the art school educated and those that have just gone out and done it?

I guess there is… I don’t take much notice. Negative viewpoints don’t affect me or what I do in any way.

You say your work is a modern-day take on the 19th century art movement – can you explain that in more depth?

The Aesthetics were a group of artisans from the turn of the 19th century. Their ethos was that art, and creativity in general, should not be about social or political statements but only to do with beauty. When I was looking for something, to differentiate my work from other urban art, this struck a chord so I came up with the term Urban Aesthetics… a perfect mix of the two.

Who are the women in the pictures?

They are real girls, girls who I have found or who have found me. They come from different countries and places but each of them has played a part in my artistic journey.

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Why do they have colour splashed over their eyes?

I never tell that… It’s the only mystery in my work so why spoil it by revealing the nature of it. I also like to leave it up to the viewer to decide themselves what it’s about.

Many of your paintings seem to be asian influenced? Why is that…

Mainly because I have been into Asian art all my life: from manuscripts through to modern-day Manga and Anime. But also because I think the Asian woman, as a general rule in the west, is misrepresented as weak and submissive. I wasn’t trying to address that balance but it felt like good subject matter.

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You’ve gone on to paint at the Royal Albert Hall.. of all the amazing places… how was that?

Surreal is the word to describe that particular job. Not just because we were painting at a venue where this type of art would be least expected but also because the 9 artists slept there overnight for 3 nights in a row… Wandering the empty halls at night was weird and spooky at the same time

Do you find you have a varied audience for your work?

I would assume so? I don’t know if my corporate audience is varied but I know I’m capable as an artist to paint in different ways… so can adapt to suit a clients requirement if there is a need to do so.

Where do you find your inspiration?

I came into art from a pretty dark place so, not wishing to return there, is pretty much the only inspiration I will ever need.

Have you experienced a creative block/or black hole?

Not once. On the odd occasion I might get bored with a particular piece that I’m painting but that passes in the space of a few hours.

If so what do you do to get out of it? Tips?

Start a different piece of work, focus my mind elsewhere… I don’t find this difficult at all. Not that I watch TV, but I suspect it’s about as difficult as changing the channel if the channel you’re watching is showing crap.

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What do you think you would do if you weren’t an artist?

Hard to say… when I look back at my office life I often wonder how I was able to do it for so long as it seems so soul-destroying to me now. I wouldn’t want to return there for love nor money.

If you are self taught how did you teach yourself about the different paints/how to stencil etc.

I practiced, I made mistakes and I never stopped believing that I could get better. Still to this day I think I can get better… and I’m sure I can and will.

I’ve seen several posts about your work being imitated by several high profile brands. That must have been really annoying. Can you go into that in more detail? Did you manage to get any justice with any of that?

It is infuriating simply because it’s so hard to get any justice. Any claim can and will cost a fortune and you really have no idea if it’s going to work in your favour or not. Big companies and small have copied my work but I think you just have to get on with what you’re doing and hope things will work themselves out. I don’t think many artists have the finances to get legal on anyone.

Your favourite current artists?

Etam Cru from Lodz, Poland and Conor Harrington

What is the most important thing in life?

Art… of course

What is the most beautiful thing about art for you?

That I can lose myself completely in it and escape from reality

Do you feel like you’re now on the right path?

Absolutely. I think I felt it from the moment I started painting but was too afraid to admit it even to myself for the fear it might be snatched away from me.

The next big election is coming up in England – do you have any hopes or thoughts on this? Artists can be influential… no?

I have never voted and that’s not going to change anytime soon. Politicians and the political system as a whole are corrupt: set up to feed the rich and starve the poor… literally and metaphorically. The sooner the general population wakes up to the daylight robbery that is happening under their noses the better… we need a sea change.

Favourite quote to leave us on:

“Art enables us to find ourselves and lose ourselves at the same time” Thomas Merton

Link to Fin DAC’s work HERE

Enjoy,

Becki Bx

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ART: BEN OAKLEY PRESENTS ‘MARDY’ WITH CARNE GRIFFITHS AND ROWAN NEWTON

The Ben Oakley Gallery continues it’s year long commitment in presenting impressive, dynamic and stimulating two person shows. Hidden down a cobbly side road in Greenwich, London, the Ben Oakley Gallery is a small and cosy gallery and is responsible for curating an endless array of innovative events and exhibitions. This is one of them.

Mardy is a unique collaboration between two young exciting contemporary artists, Carne Griffiths & Rowan Newton (featured previously on ohDearyme HERE). The artists work is sketching & painting the same subjects in response to a studio sitting at the Gallery earlier this year.

‘Griffiths’ work explores fragmented portraiture and is defined by his intricate and delicate pen work combining three dimensional floral symbols, geometric forms and accompanied by his signature abstract marks & spills of ink, tea and brandy.

‘Newton’ tackles portraiture head on with bold strong colours and abstract realism, provoking strong emotion from the viewer. Extending his expressive mixed media technique with spray paint and acrylic to working with oils for the first time in this powerful exhibition.

The gallery will be releasing an exclusive collaborative print at the opening in a strictly limited edition –contact info@benoakleygallery.com for more information..

Preview Evening: Friday 6th September 6.30-9.30pm

 Exhibition Dates: September 7th -22nd

VISITOR INFORMATION

 BEN OAKLEY GALLERY

9 Turnpin Lane, Greenwich, London SE10 9JA

DLR: Cutty Sark Greenwich (2 minutes walk)

Overground Train: Greenwich Station (5 minutes walk)

Thames Clipper (5 mins)

 Opening Times: Thursdays –Sundays 11-6pm | Monday –Wednesday by appointment.

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