Meet the artists 2: Sam BevingtonApril 20th
In the second of our series of artists’ interviews, Monorex have sat down for a nice cuppa tea and a chinwag with Sam Bevington.
Illustrator, screen-printer, Cut and Paste winner and all round busy guy, Sam gives us insights into his creative life, setting up your own screen printing press and his favorite things to have on toast….
So Sam, tell us a bit about yourself…..
Born in London in 1985 to Canadian/Ukrainian parents, went to school, skateboarding, traveling, went to Uni, now I work as a freelance illustrator, designer and sometime animator.
After the cigarettes, tea and marmite on toast, what does a typical day consist of in your studio?
If I’ve got a commission, its usually hit snooze on my alarm clock till 9.30, then downstairs for some tea and then straight into it. I try to work as quickly as I can all the way through a project, to give me time to scrap everything and start from the beginning again, which I frequently do.
What is your favorite marmalade…..
Orange of course, is there any other kind?
What are you working on at the moment?
Working on some pictures for Nuts magazine at the moment, a couple of fairly big ad jobs in the pipeline too. I’m getting to do a lot of typographic work at the moment, which I’m really enjoying.
Do you prefer computer based design or getting your hands mucky at screen-printing?
Well if there was time to design everything by hand then screen print it, I definitely would, but unfortunately deadlines are increasingly tight these days so you just do what you can. I tend to screen-print only for exhibitions and just make my digital work look as close to that aesthetic as I have time for. I do love the flexibility of computer work though.
How is your homemade screen-printing studio coming along?
Its been up and running for about a year now, but I’ve unfortunately got to give it away, along with most of my stuff, as me and my girlfriend are going traveling for 6 months then moving to Australia!
Well I’m sure there are lots of people who would happily take it off your hands! Would you recommend making your own equipment, or did it turn out to be pricey?
It was super cheap to make my setup. If you are handy with tools and timber, anyone can make it; it’s just a matter of your can-be-arsed I think. I built my whole setup with an exposure unit, print bed and I then bought screens and a pressure washer for under £200. Its already paid for itself more than 10 times over so was definitely worth it. Above all screen-printing is fun, so my tip would be: don’t make it un-fun by spending thousands of pounds on professional equipment unless you really do need the pinpoint accuracy and high-speed that makes that equipment so expensive. Professional screen-printers can be incredibly pedantic about equipment and technical details but the process itself is really simple and only requires a few tools to make. Go for it!
Your work is heavily text based with a vintage feel, who inspires you to make fresh work?
There are too many people to name! Often I’m inspired by work that has nothing stylistically to do with my own, I try to constantly keep soaking up new and old work to keep my own work fresh. People I’ve been looking at recently are: Tom Lane, Jessica Hische, Nick White, Rob Ryan, Job Wouters, Margaret Kilgallen, Andy Smith, Noma Bar…… I could go on…….
Why did you choose to go into art and design?
It wasn’t really a choice, I’ve never even considered doing anything else seriously. I was originally planning to go into furniture design, which I’m still really interested in. My dad was a well-known product designer so wanted me to follow in his footsteps, but when I went to Uni I ended up going the illustration route, and here I am!
What has been your most challenging job so far?
Definitely making the work for my home truths show. I didn’t have my own printing setup at the time so I joined Print Club in Dalston to do all my printing myself. It turned out it was too busy during the day to get anything done, so I had to do night shifts from 9pm – 6am 6 days a week for 3 weeks to get it finished. I was a fucking mess at the end of it, haha!
You competed in, and won the Cut and Past event at Aloft hotels launch night, how did you find the pressure of competing live in such a short time scale?
I’ve competed in Secret Wars before so I thought I knew what to expect, but the timescale was so much shorter it really was difficult to come out with anything that looked good! I’d love to take part again but they’ve changed the rules so that you now have to collaborate with a 3D artist and unfortunately I don’t know any! Oh well…
Have you used your prize yet ( Sam won 3 nights stay in the Abi Dhabi Aloft Hotel)?
Nah, been busy saving up for 6 months in India and Thailand then moving to Australia – I’m going to try and see if I can get an Aloft hotel along the way instead!
You’ve also been making some animations for Nominet Trust, how do you find that process?
On the one hand animation is really rewarding and fun, but on the other, very stressful and occasionally infuriating. It’s definitely a love/hate relationship for me with animation but seeing the final product makes it worth it.
and finally what would be your dream job/ client?
I’d love the chance to have a big gallery space to just go crazy in, paint on the walls, floors, stick posters up… unfortunately for me free reign on a gallery is the dream!
Thanks Sam! Keep up to date with Sam’s work on his website.