Over the past few weeks I’ve been part of a team working on a project to raise money for a new skatepark in the town I live, through an art auction of painted skateboards. Over 40 top street artists and local artists have donated original artworks, making some highly collectable pieces, and the auction is well under way. With the help of some big name graffiti artists like Mr Jago, Inkie, Ben Allen, Olly Howe to name but a few, the story gained traction and featured on the front page of the BBC News website all weekend.
So far the auction has raised over £15k, with my own deck “The Brightest Flash of Blue” currently approaching £1000 alone. With a pop-up exhibition lasting only a day, the auction continues to accept bids until 19th September.
Before turning to illustration full time, I used to head up the design & product team for DuFFs skate brand and the culture has always remained close to my heart. I’m aware how close the skate community is, and how much of the scene is created and supported at a grassroots level. Everyone involved in skate culture is always so generous to help initiatives like this of get off the ground, and the skate and art worlds go hand in hand.
As a commercial illustrator, I work to briefs that are predominantly dictated by my clients’ needs. So for personal work it’s interesting to look to my surroundings for research & inspiration. I moved to Bradford on Avon 6 years ago and on my local dog walks, I keep seeing a Kingfisher on the Avon. It really is the brightest flash of blue you ever see in nature. And the quickest. Blink and you’ll miss it, so for my deck I tried to capture those moments in time.
It’s been great getting back to analogue work instead of sitting at the screen full time. I’ll definitely be doing some more painting very soon.
Click here to see more about my board, the project, and other artists involved.