We got hooked on Andy’s art back in March when we did a feature on his incredible “Superhero Kids” series. At this point I knew I wanted to see if he would participate in a Poster Posse Project. He responded by saying, “Thanks very much! It will be interesting to see what I can come up with as I’m not really a Graphic Designer like a lot of the members, just an illustrator. But I relish the challenge :)” The end result for his first Poster Posse outing was awesome and now we get to learn more about this talented guy who describes himself as ‘just an illustrator.’ (Personally, I think he is selling himself a bit short with that description but let’s delve into it shall we?)
BLURPPY – How long have you been creating art in the pop culture scene? How did you get started?
AF – I’ve always been drawn ( no pun intended ) to fan art since I saw Star Wars as a kid so I have always drawn characters and scenes from films from an early age. Lately though, since I started painting digitally, I have had more interest in stuff like my Batman and Marvelous 18 and especially my Superhero Kids and Geek Kids series.
BLURPPY – Batman stuff is ALWAYS a favorite of mine. Your stuff looks great and I can’t get enough of anything Jock does that is Batman related. I’m also REALLY into what Poster Posse artist Chris Skinner is doing with the Dark Knight as well. Basically, you can NEVER have enough cool Batman art. Is art your full time job? If not, what else do you do?
AF – Yes I work full time as a freelance artist. It’s hard work and doesn’t pay very much but I have worked in foundries, factories and on assembly lines and they are harder.
BLURPPY – Freelance HAS to have those other three beat by a mile! A good day at work in a foundry is when you come home safe and sound. A good day as an artist is when movie stars like Ray Park appreciate your work! Whose work do you admire or collect?
Challenge Accepted by George Munteanu
AF – I have loved people like Drew Struzan, and H.R Giger from as far back as I can remember. Relatively newer artists I admire are people like George Munteanu and Raphael Lacoste. At the moment there are so many awesome artist out there it really is impossible to list them all.
Mining on Gliese by Raphael Lacoste
BLURPPY– Thank you for introducing me to two new artists! I’ve been going though their stuff and it’s impressive to say the least! What one print, by another artist, blows your mind?
AF – I’m new to the Poster Posse and to be honest I have little knowledge about the great designers of pop culture posters, so I can only really draw my inspiration from more general poster designs and one that I always love and go back to is the Drew Struzan “Back To The Future” Poster. I had that on my wall as a kid and it still impresses me to this day. Joining The Poster Posse will change that for me though as my eyes have been opened to the poster designs of my fellow members, which I have to say are fantastic.
This started off as a self portrait using the photo I used for my previous ID as a reference. However after getting extremely fed up with it I scrapped it and screwed around with it and I ended up as an undead Joker. Any similarity to Sweeney Todd is purely coincidental ( I realised it looked like the poster a bit after I had finished) Any similarity to the Joker is not coincidental! – Andy Fairhurst
BLURPPY – You may have just done the impossible, you picked a favorite Drew Struzan! Personally I KNOW, I’m not up to that task so well done Andy, well done! BTW, that Joker print is utterly creepy. Well done! With so much art being produced these days, how do you keep things fresh?
AF – I see a lot of artists in the concept art world pushing the limits and it always makes me want to up my game. Always trying to go one better than your last piece is the goal for me, even though it quite often doesn’t work out that way. But I try and be inspired by other artists and slight envy of their skills always keeps me on my toes.
I was asked by ImagineFX to contribute a picture in magazine (issue 28) which has a special feature celebrating the 80th birthday of Frank Frazetta. A whole load of artists have been asked to contribute and I am looking forward to seeing what they all come up with, I hope I don’t stick out like a crap sore thumb amidst manicured fingers of greatness lol! I decided to do a re-interpretation of his wicked ‘Swamp Demon’. Only had a week to sort something out so I am quite pleased with this.
BLURPPY – Frazetta was one of the first artists that ever caught my attention. I absolutely LOVED his album covers for Molly Hatchet and Nazareth. (Yes, I’m THAT old.) Besides working on BLURPPY’s Poster Posse Project, what is your dream project?
AF – I am a relatively older artist in this arena of young rock star artists and I am quite happy with whatever comes my way. I recently got a gig to do a series of BBC licensed Doctor Who women which was great and there may be some Doctor Who artwork, which for a Whovian like me (although I am not an extreme Whovian ) is great as it is always more fun to print what you are interested in.
BLURPPY – I’ll let you in on a secret, I’ve never watched one episode of Doctor Who. Shhh…don’t tell ANYONE! That fan base is MASSIVE so I figure there MUST be something redeeming there that I will have to get to some day. If you weren’t creating highly desirable works of art for adoring fans like me, what else would you do?
AF – Working in a factory or foundry or stacking shelves at a supermarket.
BLURPPY – Me… if I’m not working on BLURPPY or POSTER POSSE stuff I’d be working in a Mom and Pop pizza place making pies. Tossing the dough, making that sauce and cutting the cheese. Wait, THAT didn’t sound right! What movies are you excited to see this year/ next year?
AF – I can’t wait to see “The Desolation Of Smaug” and I am really hoping that the new “Mad Max” film is going to be good because I love both the Mad Max trilogy and Tom Hardy.
BLURPPY – When I first heard they were doing a Mad Max remake my initial reaction was “NOOOOOOO” but when I heard it was with Tom Hardy I said, “YEEEEEEES!” What is your favorite print from your portfolio and why?
AF – I honestly can’t say as it changes all the time, usually my latest is my favorite, unless I think it is utter crap, which is often the case hahaha.
BLURPPY – Grrrrr…that’s a cop out so I will tell you what MY favorite print is from your collection and why. Boba Fett: Bounty Hunter – because he is such a bad-ass! There see, that was easy. I’ve GOTTA get this! My wall won’t rest until it is placed upon it! Does it come in 24 X 36? What’s your biggest pet peeve about the pop culture art scene?
AF – I DO like parodies and clever takes on pop culture but I’m not too keen on mash-ups. I don’t like seeing a Boba Fett color scheme on Iron Man or Bat Vader or anything where two different pop icons are fused together for no reason. Having said that I am currently working on a private commission involving two completely unrelated iconic characters! That is the customers brief though and the customer is always right.
BLURPPY – Damn, so I guess a Wolverine/ Batman mashup is outta the question… What has been your best experience to date, in the pop culture art scene?
AF – I wouldn’t really say I am in the pop culture scene like many in the Poster Posse are. I am planning on trying a few Comic Cons out next year so who knows what they may bring. I did have my Marvelous 18 print at the Geek & Sundry exhibition at the San Diego Comic Con this year, which was pretty cool. Oh and I had a photo of Ray Park signing my Darth Maul Print to me personally which was very cool…they are pop culture experiences aren’t they?
BLURPPY – I’d say those definitely count. Hopefully you can make it over to SDCC this year. Blurppy gathers a bunch of artists and we all go get BBQ one night. Last year was epic, this year we’re bringing so many people that the place will run out of wet-wipes! What was your most embarrassing moment as an artist?
AF – I am sure that will come if I do any comic cons, as I have never done any. I’m sure to fall through a table or something.
BLURPPY – Whatever you do, DON’T land on the Boba Fett print, I WANT THAT! What is the best interview question you’ve ever been asked and what was your answer?
AF – I haven’t had many interviews and of those none of the questions were memorable. So I shall say this question you are asking me right now and the answer I am giving here and now.
BLURPPY – Hmmm…I’m not sure if that was clever or a cop out. I will defer to “clever” and let it slide. What do you have on tap for the rest of 2013 and don’t give us that line, “Lots of stuff , just can’t talk about it yet”
AF – Like I said before the Doctor Who stuff and I recently did a retro Raiders Of The Lost Ark poster so I will be doing the remaining 3 in varying genre styles. This one was done in a 1930/40s film poster style.
So much art, so little space! Now for some quick questions that only require you to say the first thing that comes to mind.
– DC or Marvel?
I used to be more Marvel but I find the villains in DC more interesting, so DC. I don’t know if that’s something that happens with age though…Marvel seems more youth friendly, to me anyway.
– Most Desired Super Power?
I’d want to fly very fast
– Who is your favorite Star Wars Character and why?
Boba Fett because from the moment I saw him at the age of 8 he was the epitome of cool. Before that it was Han Solo.
– Best movie snack?
I hate people eating in the cinema. I can’t concentrate on the film if I can hear rustling and chewing and slurping.
– Growing up, what was your favorite TV show?
Showing my age here but I was into V( the original ), Knight Rider, Battlestar Gallactica ( the original ) Doctor Who and The Amazing Spider-man (the live action one set in LA? )
– What’s the best way for fans to keep up with all you have going on?
Can I be greedy?
– What’s your favorite pop culture event?
I’ve never been to an expo or convention so I would have to say the one I pay a lot of interest to via the internet is the SDCC
– Who is your favorite fictional character of all time and why? (Can be comic books, movies, literature, etc)
Another hard one but I’d have to go for Batman. There are so many, Indiana Jones, Mad Max, Elliott from E.T ( who we named my 5 yr old son after ) Marty Mcfly and Boba Fett to name a few but Batman to me is the coolest and deepest and most iconic of the characters for me growing up and remains so to this day.
– Would you rather design the poster for an upcoming Star Wars movie or the upcoming Blade Runner prequel?
Star Wars, just because it was such a huge influence in my life from when I saw it back in 1978 as a 5 year old (I know it came out in ’77 but I saw it in 1978 ). Blade Runner is brilliant but Star Wars is part of me.
Andy, Andy, Andy…let’s recap what we learned today:
- You’re a Batman aficionado
- Star Wars runs in your blood
- I pity the fool that sits next to you in a movie theater with a tray of nachos
- You really should try Junior Mints during a movie, no crunch, pure bliss
- You are able to pick ONE Drew Struzan print as your favorite
- I DESPERATELY want that BOBA FETT PRINT!
Huge thanks to Andy for taking the time to do this interview and participate in Blurppy’s 47 Ronin Poster Posse Project. Stay tuned because he just signed on for Projects 5 and 6!