What most influences me is the little child inside me.
An animator, cartoonist, illustrator, product designer, published author, fine artist, toy designer, clothing designer based in Sydney, Jeremyville is here! WIth the new book “Jeremyville Sessions” and Shift cover, enjoy his interview below.
Could you tell us about yourself including your background?
I chose to do an architecture degree and not art school, because it taught me about applied art and design, and how to bring discipline and structure into my creative thought processes. I think in terms of concepts and projects, not one specific medium.
I was in the recent Colette group show, along side KAWS, Mike Mills, Takeshi Murakami, Yoshitomo Nara, Futura and Fafi, among others. Also the books I have created include: ‘Vinyl Will Kill’, which was the first book in the world on designer toys, and the new ‘Jeremyville Sessions’ book, with collaborations with the likes of Beck, Devilrobots and Geoff McFetridge. And our sketchel project, which is our custom bag concept, that’s attracted over 500 artists so far, like Miss Van, Gary Baseman, Jaime Hayon and Genevieve Gauckler.
What was the beginning of Jeremyville?
I am an animator, cartoonist, illustrator, product designer, published author, fine artist, toy designer, clothing designer. I don’t like just one title over anything else. It is too limiting. I like crossing over from one discipline to the other. It’s all a part of Jeremyville. That’s why I came up with Jeremyville, it’s like a place where things happen, and others can visit and collaborate, other artists and clients. Jeremyville is a state of mind. A concept based project.
Could you tell us about projects you are currently working on?
I just had Fafi over for dinner at my home ! That was fun night. I’m also painting a life size Darth Vader helmet, for a huge Star Wars show by George Lucas. Others in the show include Jeff Soto, Dalek, Shag, Kozik, Buffmonster. I’m also doing designs for Quiksilver, and I just sold my giant 60 inch Qee I painted to a gallery in Cologne, Germany. I also just designed a shoe for Converse, and painted a toy for MTV Italy. I’m in a comic book anthology in a new book from LA, and I have some new toys coming out. I’m also doing a toy with Kidrobot in New York.
I was just in a skate deck show by Refill Magazine called Refill 7. Others in it include Marok, Rostarr, Jeff Staple, Marc Atlan, Andy Jenkins, Jeremy Hollister, Dmote, Merda, Bigfoot, Fafi, Tilt, Mist, Monster Children, Rinzen, Maya Hayuk, Cody Hudson, Luca Ionescu, Michael Leon, and lots more.
The new book “Jeremyville Sessions” is beautifully done. Could you tell us the concept? And any stories behind the making process with this much of artists?
Thankyou. It’s all about collaborations, with artists like the musician Beck, Geoff McFetridge, Colette, Miss Van, Deanne Cheuk, Lego, MTV, Adidas, Devilrobots, Gary Baseman, about 300 artists and companies. Published by IdN. It took about 5 production samples to get the reflective silver on the cover just right. Chris, Jonathan and Laurence Ng and the team at IdN did a great job.
How about the previous book “vinyl will kill!”?
Vinyl Will Kill! is the first book in the world on designer toys, published by IdN, art direction by Megan Mair. In it, I interview Fafi, Devilrobots, Gary Baseman, Kinsey, Kozik, Tim Biskup, Thunderbirds, Furi Furi, Scarygirl, Bill McMullen, Mars-1, Tim Tsui, Jason Siu, many others. It was in Wallpaper Magazine’s book of the month.
Could you tell us about sketchel, comics, and hazkems?
Sketchel is a customisable bag design invented by myself and Megan Mair. Over 500 artists have now been involved in it, including Beck, Genevieve Gauckler, Gary Baseman, Tim Biskup, Bob Kronbauer, Fawn Gehweiler, Saiman Chow, Jon Burgerman, Miss Van, Beck, Tado, Nathan Jurevicius, Tim Tsui, Jaime Hayon, and Marc Atlan.
I began my art career by drawing cartoons at the Sydney Morning Herald. I drew about 5 cartoons a day relating to stories : I’d be given print outs, and have 20 minutes to think of something clever. So that taught me to think fast, get to the essence of what I needed to convey, and strip the art down to bare essentials. Cartooning is just one part of what I do, it does not really infiltrate my other work, maybe just in the speed at which I can create an image, and getting to the heart of the most appropriate visual quickly, but that’s about it. I still love to draw cartoons and comic stories, I just had a 2 page comic story published in Swindle Magazine, Shepard Fairey’s new mag out of LA.
These are a group of characters that live on the outskirts of Jeremyville, from the wrong side of the tracks.
What do you like to do the most in your free time?
Run. Swim. Draw. Read. Think. Meditate. Hang out.
Do you have designers/artists/books/and any other things you’ve been influenced by?
What most influences me is the little child inside me. The 12 year old who played with Lego and Smurfs as a kid and wanted to grow up to just create things. I’m now living that image I had of myself, and I hold on daily to that future-vision of me I had as a kid. It’s my daily inspiration.
Could you tell us about the concept of the SHIFT cover?
It’s about love and friendship. I drew it on the plane home from Italy. I watched the sunset over the horizon from the aeroplane, and imagined holding the dripping sun’s rays in my hand, with my companion by my side. The red love hearts become birds and fly away.
What’s your next plan?
I’m having a solo show in Paris soon, and going to Beijing in China to paint at an event. I just came back from painting at MTV Italy, in Milan, with Furi Furi, Tado, Rinzen, Mauro Gatti, Yo Clas, and Tokidoki.
Please leave a message to readers.
Keep a sketchbook with you always, and put down thoughts and drawings in it all the time. It’s a great way to grow and evolve.
Text: Yurie Hatano