Blake McFarland is a recycled materials artist who uses recycled rubber tires to create amazing lifelike sculptures of tire animals. In addition to his tire sculptures, Blake is a painter and he also creates murals out of recycled wine corks.
Blake is also a pitcher in the Toronto Blue Jays organization.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/blakemcfarland
-Having two identities as a baseball player and an artist and how he balances those two worlds.
-How the baseball offseason provides months of time that he can fully devote to his art.
-The type of art (and planning) he does during the baseball season.
-How he started as an acrylic painter and sold his very first piece.
-How Goodyear reached out to him to make sculptures for the Cotton Bowl.
-His method for deciding what specific type of art to do in a particular day.
-The initial resistance of people not understanding what he meant when he told them he wanted to create tire sculptures, and his decision to create it to show them.
-How he used the negative result of having to get shoulder surgery to get positive results in his art career.
-What art and creativity brings to his life.
-The story behind his recycled cork art.
“I had basically eighteen days to finish two larger-than-life sculptures which would normally take me up to two months to create.”
“I’m not a guy that likes a lot of downtime, and I always think that if I’m watching TV I could be doing something else more productive, so that’s when I do the majority of my artwork.”
“When I told my wife I wanted to make a tire sculpture, she just kind of laughed at me.”
“Take whatever bad thing comes at you, and channel it into something positive.”
“When you’re writing or doing art, you’re not thinking about anything but the task at hand, and that’s what you need to get your mind off of other things.”
Mike is a UK based designer specializing in Web/UI Design, Graphic Design, Branding, Illustration & Photography. He has a worldwide client roster and his work is regularly featured in design related publications. Mike is also a regular speaker at design & tech conferences.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/mikekus
-How he feels as if he was predisposed to become a designer from a young age.
-Working as a graphic designer for The Body Shop.
-His entrance into the world of web design.
-The story of his creative block while trying to design for Carsonified and the “penny drop moment” that cracked the block.
-The strategy he employs to avoid creative blocks and to get to the thesis of what he is going to create for a company.
-Developing a “single sentence” that encompasses what a company is all about and what his design will attempt to portray.
-Being a black sheep in the face of trends.
-How he attempts to create a unique identity for each of the companies that he works with.
-How the layout of a website is unimportant in comparison to the content.
-How his interest in photography was reawakened with the emergence of Instagram and the accessibility of his phone’s camera.
-The importance of not having an agenda for your creative passions and just doing them because you want to do them.
-A lesson he learned from being in a band about not listening to people who try to influence you to change one way or another.
-A story of putting off writing an article about productivity.
“Creativity is the last thing that computers will steal from us.”
“There’s not even a point in doing design if you’re not trying to be a black sheep.”
“My belief is that everyone I work with is unique and has a unique story to tell.”
“I don’t feel that layout is much of an issue. It’s really the content of the website that’s up for grabs.”
“For me it was more about capturing a moment.”
“Because it was simple, because it was in my pocket, I started getting into taking pictures again.”
“I started using Instagram on the day it came out.”
“Doing work for companies mixed in with my personal works brings more variety to the pictures I take and the locations I end up in because of it.”
“Just starting to do it and seeing what happens is much more important than trying to have an agenda.”
“Just to know that when you’re going through a period of lack of motivation and you’re not being productive, you’re not the only one. Just knowing that other people are in the same boat is sort of comforting.”
Andreas Preis is a designer, illustrator & artist, currently living and working Berlin. He was born deep in the Bavarian Forest in the south of Germany and pursuing his lifelong desire to become a painter without a boss, he studied communications design in Nuremberg.
Andreas also creates murals, tape art, and live paintings, and also works in different areas of traditional communications design like typography, logo design, icon design, and art direction.
He has worked with a variety of brands, including Microsoft, Adidas, Adobe, ESPN, Ford, Nike, and Coors, just to name a few.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/andreaspreis
-What it was like growing up in the Bavarian forest.
-Why he decided to go with communications design.
-How he unintentionally developed his personal style, and how he isn’t even sure if he ever wanted a “style” in the first place.
-How it is much harder to change your style once you already have one than it is to develop one in the first place.
-His hatching technique and how he sees it as a meditative process.
-How some digital tools and devices make his creative process faster, easier, and more convenient.
-How technology can help you to play around and get new ideas that you wouldn’t have been able to conceive of without it.
-The story of his first mural on the Berlin Wall.
-The challenges that come with translating his work onto a larger scale for his murals.
-Dealing with difficult clients and trusting your instincts when it appears as if a client either has no money or has no idea what they want.
-When and when not to do free work.
-How he balances his time between working for many different clients and still trying to find time for his personal work.
-Why he thinks many of his friends never posted any of their work.
-How criticism becomes easier to deal with the more you put yourself out there.
“When you do things that you personally like, I think that after a while you will have your own style.”
“I think where technology can help you a lot is that you can play around with things and maybe get new ideas from it.”
“If you already earn money, that’s already something that’s holding you back from going freelance.”
“If people are trying to talk you into different reasons why they can’t pay you for something that will pay them later on, it just doesn’t make sense.”
“For me, drawing is not really work. So if I have a day off, chances are pretty big that I will draw or paint anyway.”
Sandra Busby is a still life artist who paints in a contemporary style using traditional methods. Inspired by the ordinary, she strives to capture the playful light in glass and other still life with her paints.
Feeling stifled by the modern way of teaching, Sandra turned her back on art school, shut herself away and studied the traditional methods of painting.
Her work has since been published multiple times, she won her first award in 2016 and her paintings can now be found hanging in private collections around the world.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/sandrabusby
-Her creative history, including a long gap in drawing and painting.
-The idea of not drawing in your sketchbook because you are afraid of spoiling the pages.
-How 100 pages of doodles or bad drawings is much better than 100 blank pages.
-How she is able to “scratch her creative itch” before she starts her work day, and how productive that time ends up being.
-Finding a slot of time that works best for when you are most creative.
-How starting is often the hardest thing to do, but once you do, how fast and smoothly things can go.
-The idea of having a white board or something similar to write down all of the ideas that come into your head so that they are in plain view.
-Her experience at art school and what led her to decide that art college was not for her.
-How she eventually developed her style by ignoring everybody else.
-Some of the resistances that she faces on a daily basis, including self doubt, procrastination, and guilt.
-How difficult it can be to get to your creative passion when you are in love with your partner and just want to spend time with them.
-How to strike a balance between the love for your family and the love for your art.
-“The Skanky Teenage Stage” of a painting and how to get through it.
-The power in approaching your art with the simple intention of making it just a little bit better.
-Some of the people that she draws inspiration from, such as Danny Gregory, other bloggers, and her Uncle Danny.
“Trying to write a novel with one child attached to your leg and the other attached to your boob is quite distracting. It was never going to work.”
“It was six months before I opened that sketchbook because I was absolutely terrified to spoil the pages.”
“It made me realize that I could paint the world however I wanted to paint it.”
“You don’t have to show anyone. If you’re that worried, get a ring binder. You can pull the pages out.”
“You do need to forget about perfection and the end result. You’ve got to just make marks and see where it takes you.”
“I thought that to be a real artist, you must have this piece of paper to tell you that.”
“Procrastination is a great way of avoiding failure, isn’t it?”
“To be good at something, the first thing you’ve got to be willing to do is be bad at it.”
What Beginner Artists Need to Know about Painting [From Sandra's blog]
The Six Secret Stages of Painting [From Sandra's blog]
"Pep Talk" by Danny Gregory [Vimeo]
Benjamin Hardman is an Australian photographer residing in Iceland. He works to blend digital media with fixed aesthetic principles through textural contrasts and natural obscurities within the landscape. Channeling between portrayals of stark wilderness and refined conceptual pieces, his work encapsulates the seasonal change that grips Iceland throughout the year.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/benjaminhardman
-How he went from Accounting in Australia to becoming a professional photographer in Iceland.
-Some of the difficulties and adjustments that he had to make in moving to a completely new climate and culture.
-How he made the move to Iceland much more stable by spending a year saving money and working on his photography.
-His advice to have a well-thought-out plan before jumping into a big life change.
-How his photographic style has changed since moving to Iceland.
-Progressing and looking at the closer details.
-The adventures that he takes people on, specifically “Odyssey.”
-His YouTube channel, specifically the drone videos.
-The awe-inspiring event of seeing the Aurora Borealis.
-How he attempts to keep himself motivated.
-How he looks back at his old work to see if there are any “gems” that he hadn’t noticed before and what that does for his creative process.
-The idea of posting new work alongside old work.
-Trying to put your work together in groups to find trends or consistencies, even if you are just making an exhibition for yourself.
-How he balances his time with the many things he has to do as a professional photographer.
-His advice for amateur freelancers who want to reach out to people for work.
-Being down when he spends a lot of time on a particular photo and is still not happy about the results (and how he shares it anyway).
“I had no idea that this place would just completely change my whole perception of life.”
“If you have enough dedication, you will find a way. If you’re that passionate about doing something, it will be possible somehow.”
“I basically quit everything and went for it.”
“It’s okay to miss a crazy photo in one spot to go get a new, never-before-seen mediocre photo of something else.
“I try my best to stay motivated but when you’re your own boss, it can get hard.”
“If you’re just an authentic individual with a great plan, you’re going to go pretty far.”
“A photo can change so dramatically from where it started to where it ended and well beyond what I thought it would be.”
“Imagine the world of photography if everyone was pushing the barriers for themselves and doing things that maybe they’re not fully comfortable with but really pushing it. I think we’d have a way more diverse industry of people.”
Are you upset with who the country chose to be the President of the United States?
Does watching the News make you scared?
Are you spending all of your time getting into political debates?
Do things like poverty, global warming, inequality, and potential war make you want to curl up into a ball and hide?
When the world around us seems too big, too depressing, and too scary, creative people can sometimes go into hibernation mode. Long lulls in our creative output come when we get sucked into all of the problems that the world faces. Most of them just seem too big for us to try to face, so we simply don't do anything.
But it is our duty as creative people to battle these problems by changing culture at its source.
In this episode, we listen back to previous guests who have also been overwhelmed by the scary world that they live in and who have battled back to make a positive change. Youngman will try to make you realize that you don't have to have an enormous audience to make a change with your voice.
By contributing to the conversation with your art, you can change the world.
Shane Madden is an award winning illustrator and cover artist from Toronto, Canada. He has illustrated for books, magazines, and games including NY Times best sellers. He participates in workshops, online communities, and he teaches illustration at a college level. He is also the founder of the Illustration Lighthouse.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/shanemadden
-His experience in going to art school and being initially overwhelmed.
-Technical illustration and what that means.
-The false idea of the “Field of Dreams” art career, where if you build it, they will come.
-Building a portfolio around the type of work that you want to do, and taking the confusion away from the art directors that will be looking at your portfolio.
-How someone like James Jean’s portfolio isn’t something you should try to emulate if you are looking for work, as he is simply showcasing his work.
-His advice to not try to do multiple things at once, but instead start with the first thing you want to get going and then add on as you become competent.
-The power of having your own website and the dangers of people wandering somewhere else when you send them to your profile on social media sites.
-The idea of investing in your art career, even if that means spending money to take a trip with interviews lined up.
-Putting something in your portfolio that you are able to comfortably talk about so that you will appear knowledgeable.
-The three different types of artists and how they develop an audience and make money.
-How many different kinds of jobs that are available to artists that you might never have thought about before.
-His advice for artists who haven’t made a cent from their work to start making money.
-To not work for free – to at least get something from your time and talent (and publicity doesn’t count).
-His math formula for determining if your time is better spent looking for creative work than working at an unrelated job.
-How your resume doesn’t matter at all, all that matters is your portfolio.
-More about Illustration Lighthouse and what people can expect from it.
“You really don’t need any social media to get commercial work. The viability of putting your time into social media isn’t as good as you pounding the pavement and finding the right people to hire you for the type of work that you want to do.”
“You need to make sure that those five images say exactly what it is that you do and the kind of work that you want to do. Get that in front of the people that are looking for that specific work. Basically magic happens at that point.”
“What do you want to do first? Because if you try to do thirty things at a time, you are going to fail at thirty things. Try to get some success with one thing that you want to do and then start adding things on top of it.”
“Make sure that the work that is in your portfolio actually fits that market that you’re looking for.”
“You have to make yourself stand out. The best way to do that is to find out what it is that makes you different, what it is that you do that makes you special and amplify that.”
“I always think of myself as an art mercenary. Whoever wants to slam down the bag of money, I will be more than happy to fulfill what they’re looking for.”
“Go where no one else is going. Don’t try to storm the gates with the other thousands of people. Try to knock on the side door and get yourself in that way and differentiate yourself.”
Lana Crooks loves the antique, the creepy, the cute and the mysterious. Constructing creatures from fabrics and found objects, she is a purveyor of faux specimens and soft curiosities that are a blend of science and fantasy. Sought after for her pattern-making abilities, she frequently teams up with other artists to breathe three dimensional life into their illustrations, earning her two Designer Toy Awards.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/lanacrooks
-The “convoluted” artistic path that she took.
-Some of the many variables that came together to make her decide that she didn’t want to continue being an illustrator.
-How an “escape from people” at her job at Virgin Megastore led to a new creative job.
-How she started making her felt creatures and skeletons.
-Having two unique styles and not being afraid to pursue both at the same time.
-Her advice for people who spend too much time in the “incubation period” and allow themselves too much time to let doubt creep into their heads.
-This Is What I Do Now moments.
-Some of the other things that hold her back, like wanting to be “good enough,” being a perfectionist, and sometimes being too close to her pieces for too long.
-Her “box of sadness” and “box of happiness.”
-How she handles her monthly calendar and occasionally needs to catch up by having a “beast week.”
-The idea of needing to force yourself to get out of the house in order to give yourself time to be inspired by things that are outside of yourself.
-Her experience of studying bones at museums.
“Basically my whole creative career is a series of whims and tests.”
“It was perfect for me. It blends illustration with the costume design and the sewing, tactile part of it with the crazy things in my head.”
“You have to see where it takes you. You can’t pretend that the idea never crossed your mind because it won’t ever become anything.”
“Every couple years I have a This Is What I Do Now moment.”
“Having a lot of things to work on at one time is good for my morale. I get to banish pieces to the closet until I can have a strong enough will to see them again. And then sometimes I’ll pull it out and think that is great and wonder how I did it.”
“Once you’ve resigned the piece to its fate, that’s when you can start seeing good in it.”
“These pieces of art are basically like my children, but they’re just jerks. I love being able to create them, but they give me such hell that I get emotionally attached to them, either good or bad.”
“If you’re waiting for someone to hand you an opportunity, you’ll be waiting a very long time.”
Audra Auclair is a Canadian artist whose work has spanned across many mediums. She has been exhibited locally and internationally in Australia and America. Although she achieved a Graphic Design degree, she instead specializes in exploring the surreal and beautiful female form with her transcendent fusion of fine art and illustration.
She also has a YouTube channel, in which she focuses on art, mentality, and life, within an honest and calm atmosphere.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/audraauclair
-How she got to the point that she is at today in her artistic career.
-Why she decided to move to Thailand to find her style.
-How the way to find your style is to let go instead of trying too hard.
-How she balances her time with creating art and also managing the business aspects of being a professional artist.
-How she schedules her days and weeks.
-The importance of trusting your intuition when you feel like you are supposed to do something, even if there isn’t a good reason.
-Why she started her YouTube channel and some of her plans for the channel going forward.
-The idea of attacking your creative weaknesses instead of repeating what you are good at.
-The experience of opening up her sketchbook on YouTube for a “sketchbook tour.”
-The long and arduous process of creating a new graphic novel with her boyfriend, Lopi.
-Putting off creating something because of the voice in your head that tells you that “you’re not good enough yet.”
-The struggle of trying to find free time to work on personal projects.
-Not getting too caught up in comparing yourself to other artists and continuing to draw every day.
-The importance of taking inspiration from the real world around you.
-Not feeling the pressure to share all of your work.
“I didn’t have any proper style because I was still getting to know myself and my art.”
“When you think you want to do art, there’s so many paths that you can take.”
“There was an invisible dam that I had created with all these expectations. I thought I needed to be an illustrator or a graphic designer. I couldn’t just be an artist for some reason.”
“I didn’t realize that all I really needed to do was be myself, do what I wanted, and everything would fall into place.”
“It’s hard for me to like a finished painting the next day.”
“It’s a struggle because you want to make sure that everything’s perfect, but there’s a point where you have to say, ‘It’s never going to get done if I’m going to wait for this thing to be perfect.’”
“I think that this is going to be the biggest project I do in my life.”