On my radar for quite some time has been the playful and sarcastic illustrations by Marc Johns. This BC bound artist resides on the beautiful Vancouver Island with his family and whole lot of inspiration. We had the opportunity to visit him in his studio and ask him a few questions about what makes him tick, creatively that is!
1) Whats your source of inspiration?
Everything is inspiration. I keep a notebook in my back pocket at all times, and jot down anything and everything that’s interesting. It could be a really great word like ‘flummoxed’, it could be a funny expression, a great composition on a gig poster, or something that my kids are talking about. It’s often looking at things and combining them with something that doesn’t belong, or wondering what the world looks like from the perspective of an object. The world doesn’t really make sense to me, so I try and capture its absurdities.
2) How do you recharge your creative batteries?
Quiet. And nature. And a bit of exercise. A walk on the beach (preferably one that’s not teeming with people), or a stroll through Ross Bay cemetery, or a jog around my neighbourhood usually does the trick.
3) Who is an influential artist/mentor you have or would like to meet?
There’s too many to name, but I’ll go with Maurice Sendak and Edward Gorey. They were both incredible artists, and were both writers, and both embraced the absurd. I’m drawn to artists that write, that are able to combine words and pictures in wonderful ways. Words are a big part of my work, and I’d like to explore more of the writing side of what I do.
4) Describe your perfect day in Vancouver.
I don’t live in Vancouver anymore, but when I did my perfect day usually involved some quality time on Granville Island: buy some new pens at Opus, be mesmerized by the incredible selection of papers and notebooks at Paper-Ya, soak in the sights and smells of the food market, get a coffee and a burger and eat it outside while watching some free live music. Oh, and all the while jotting down drawing ideas in my notebook.
We are thrilled to have Marc as one of our ten outstanding artists representing submiT 2012 and helping to raise money for imagine1day. To learn more about Marc you can visit his website, and check out this book Serious Drawings, people love his work so much they even get tattoos of their favorite drawings. Oh and top secret, we heard through the grapevine that Marc has a new book coming out in the fall, so stay tuned and make sure to befriend him on Twitter & Facebook to get the latest hot off the press.
Check back next week for another interview with one of our artists! Happy weekend!
post by: Cariann Burger
photo credit: Josh Curran Photography
artwork: all rights reserved, Marc Johns