Holy Mongolia it has been a crazayyy busy summer!
A lot has happened since the last posting and yea, let me catch up with you people who are actually interested in what I’ve been up to.
Being a freelancer and being
able to set your own hours is a blessing and a curse. The curse part is trying
to figure out when to take a break. I’m the kind of person who hates napping. I
feel like I’m missing out on something out there, whether it’s catching my
daughter saying a new word, or discovering a personal project that I could be
tackling. Either way, I push myself through the nodding off and vacant eyes and
Taking a break for 5 or 10 minute catnaps is tough, but taking a two week break to me is even harder, especially now that I’m freelancing. My wife started her holidays in June (a month long holiday) and we both wanted to do something big (big in our books). It turned out that my sister-in-law was asked to house sit her cousin’s place in NY for a few weeks and we asked if we could join for a little while to save on a hotel! So we did and off we went to NY for the first time.
Had a blast staying in the Village and got to feel how Chandler, Joey and the rest of the Friends lived haha! Funnily enough we stayed a block away from the famous apartment building from the show.
Yada yada, did all the touristy things. When it rained, we shopped or visited a museum. We did the boat tour and saw a Broadway show, but I really just wanted to get a feel for the city. I watched a ton of shows and read a lot of comics when I was younger that revolved around NY and to finally visit the city reaffirmed how cool it was. It’s just so big and there is so much to see that even with the amount of time we spent there, we didn’t have enough time to visit some friends or see some sites that we really wanted to. I guess this is just motivation to return. I think the one thing that was jaw dropping was just how well kept the city was. How it still keeps it's age in tact. The houses, the streets, the buildings, I took it all in. I was that guy taking pictures of random buildings that had great architectural details instead of the guy just looking at the big tourist spots.
We were happy to get back because it was the first time my wife and I left our little girl for
that long. She had a great time visiting Nana and Grandma and Papa. She was in
great hands but seeing her at the airport waiting for us was a great moment.
Getting back to my work related stuff. Before the trip, I was contacted by someone interested in my work that could possibly help boost some attention to his own site that revolved around the skate/snow/surf culture out there . He wanted to create a limited edition skateboard that he would promote through his site.
Here's a sample, but not the final artwork. To keep up with this project follow their Twitter.
The project is in its final stages right now, and I will be posting once everything is available. This job was on my bucket list. I’ve always wanted to have my artwork on a board! Sure I could just do it myself, find some manufacturer and get it done up, but I’ve always wanted to be commissioned to do one. So if you know of clients that might want one done or a series, hit me up!
If you’ve been following me on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook you may have seen some previews and some development of said board, so I’ll let you do some digging if you want. But keep an eye on this Twitter for the official drop. It’ll be a lot of fun to see how it’s displayed and sold. I can’t wait to get my copy, that’s for sure.
Throughout the year, I have been doing poster work for different galleries and shows but if I didn’t have any commissions or contracts prior to these shows, I couldn’t logistically put effort into it because it’s really not a moneymaker. It’s more of a hobby that I get to share with the world and in the process, I get to meet cool people with similar interests. One of the main commissions that allows me to do this is these guys:
Through my good pal Spencer Cathcart, I was lined up to roll out a lot of their design and illustration needs. Spenny has been the mastermind behind the branding of the whole event from its conception and we are now on the second year of the festival. Now bear in mind, I won't lie and say I'm a country fan (I dig Shania cuz it reminds me of home), but I enjoy seeing people’s passion for what they’re good at and the lineups at these festivals are filled with talent. Either way, this has been the bloodline of PAIDesign for the last year and I couldn’t be happier. The folks I work with on a daily basis are supportive, constructive and very understanding. If showing my thanks to them means putting in late hours and putting aside weekend plans to get jobs done, then I’m on board. I couldn’t be happier doing work for clients like this. They really love their jobs and it showed last year at the festival they put on. This year, they’ll prove it again August 1st through August 4th.
If you’re wondering what my role was with this, I’ll show you a few examples.
From billboards, to truck-wraps to logo design, I was involved somewhere. I’m just glad that I was able to help out with whatever situation they needed me for. It has kept me busy and employed for some time and it has been really interesting to say the least.
This might answer some questions you have about my other work: “Is Paul making a living from his poster sales?” The answer: “Hellz no!” Boots and Hearts helps me to keep all of that going. Granted, I do make some money from posters but I end up stashing it away in my daughter’s little bank account. So keep buying folks, baby needs to take 3rd Year Biology class at Harvard! Haha!
Here’s a few that I was involved from the last time I blogged.
With the theme of poster art and collecting in mind, you have probably heard of the San Diego Comic Convention on Television or in the Entertainment section of websites and periodicals. Just hashtag “SDCC” in your browser search bar and you’ll see what the craziness is all about.
I was a huge comic fan as a kid. I still have a ton of my old comics that I used to use for artistic inspiration and for sheer entertainment. (see photos) I would read about Comic Con all the time and think: “Meh, it’s so far away and it would cost so much to get there”. Well, I still think that way, but I found out when I was younger that there was a convention that had all of that minus the big ass displays just 8 hours south in Toronto! I was in Grade 10 and our family took a trip to Toronto. It just so happens that the Comic Convention called Fan Expo was going on the weekend we were down and one of my favorite artists was down there signing autographs! Greg Capullo, the famous pencil artist for Spawn and now Batman was going to be there for a full afternoon to meet fans. It was kinda cool meeting him but he gave me some Not-So-Great advice that would make Mr. T pretty pissed. After I asked him if I needed to go to school to be a comic book artist he said: “You don’t need that shit. If you’re good, you’re good.” I looked at my dad’s face that wasn’t so smiley after that. Haha!
Moving on, Fan Expo goes on every year, and just recently a fellow artist asked me if I would be going. I think what he meant was, will I be working the convention. Turns out they have an “Artist’s Alley” for artists looking to display their talents, sell some of their work and to meet fans and fellow professionals. I thought to myself, this could be really cool actually. (Cool in my books, nerdy in everyone else’s). So I brought up the idea to my wife and she’s totally up for it. This year, we’ll just go to the show, but next year maybe I’ll get a chair and a table for myself and be part of the place that gave me the worst advice haha!
Either way this year, there is a list that would drive my kid-self absolutely bonkers. (I'm going slightly bonkers in my adulthood now) but Stan Lee "The names above all names!"- Jason Lee (Mallrats) will be there along with a name that got me into comics Todd McFarlane. Yep, that guy that bought that baseball for 3 million dollars. I studied his art, watched his tutorials and followed his career when it really took off. Other names like Dale Keown who's art used to blow my mind will be there along with genius Garth Ennis.
Next year, expect a PAIDesign booth to be there… or just a table with my name on a piece of paper.
Either way, strangely enough, my wife is super jacked to check it all out so that makes my nerdy-self even more excited!
One place that I created a great relationship with is Sid Lee. I had a small contract with them to help design some work for one of their clients this July. Such a cool place to work! Located in the heart of the Distillery District, their office is on the top floor of one of the original distillery buildings. The cool thing about it is that they’ve left the structure as is, in order to create this New Design age meets blue collar worker building. I landed this contact through my friend Peter whom I went to college with. Turns out I had friends in common or went to school with a number of folks there. Everyone was super cool and fun. I just couldn’t believe the atmosphere. It was very refreshing to see how everyone got along and had fun while getting important jobs done. I may have seen about 5 ping pong tournaments go down in my week’s stay there! (I didn't participate OBVI due to me being on the clock haha)
I look forward to talking with them in the future.
Some of you may have been following me on Behance and wondered about the bit of a drought on my submissions. This would be from the craziness that is Boots and Hearts. The festival starts in a week and things are getting pretty busy. Not at the moment obviously (because I’m writing this) but because my pal Jacob, who is feeding me projects, is currently on a flight from Nashville and he’s typing out what needs to get done.
But yea, I’ve been holding off on some personal projects or should I say, dabbling in them here and there. Here are some of my Works In Progress that I will be adding to my design inventory. So far, they’re really fun to work on. I just need more justified time to work on them but keep your eyes peeled.
One last thing before I close this long-ass catch-up, I may be changing up my site a little and by a little I mean completely flipping it. This is one of the reasons why I can’t have tattoos on my body. I would get so sick of looking at them everyday that I would want to tattoo something over it, or just laser the shit out of it to get it off of me. The site has grown a little old on me, maybe because I’m wearing a heavy plaid shirt and it’s the middle of the summer right now, or it’s because I miss the old layout or something. Either way, things will be looking a lot different soon and I may even get someone involved to help me put some “movement” into the site.
Never a dull moment I tells ya, but this is what we creatives live for. We can’t sit still…kinda like after a hockey game and the shower didn’t “take”. Hahah woah TMI!
Oh!! and I found some of my work in Applied Arts 2013 Design Awards Annual!
Sorry for throwing all of this at you but this is kind of how I catch up with my parents. I let some life experiences bulk up so that I have more to talk about.
Have a good one pals!