Rhys Owens Interview
Lemonade Magazine: For those who aren’t aware of you or your art could you give us a brief introduction?
Rhys Owens: My name’s Rhys Owens, I’m based in South Wales, UK, and I’m a designer / illustrator / creator of odd looking characters.
LM: Can you tell us a little about your artistic background?
RO: I’ve been interested in art and design for as long as I can remember, but it became more than a hobby when I started a graphic design course in college. While there, I was introduced to digital art and design, both 2D and 3D, which greatly changed the course of my work.
LM: Who or what inspired you to start creating art?
RO: Comic books were a great inspiration to me when I was younger. ‘How to Draw Comics the Marvel Way’ was my favourite book and I’ve still got it on my shelf. It still gets used once in a while.
LM: How would you describe your art?
RO: Urban is how most people describe it. It’s not an inaccurate term, but it seems awkward to me as I’m not a very ‘urban’ person. You won’t find me tagging my initials or wheatpasting in an alley in Swansea city centre.
LM: How would describe your creative process? Do you always start from the same point or do you try to work more organically?
RO: I’ve got a 9-5 job weekdays, so my design work is limited to evenings and weekends mostly. When I do have the time to design, I like to play around with an idea until it either works or it doesn’t It’s a very hit and miss process but it does the job. Also, I’d love to be the type of person who has an abundance of motivation, but some days it takes a lot of caffeine and a strong will to get started.
LM: Tell us about your favourite piece of work that you have created to date and why it is so special to you?
RO: Panda No.3 is my favourite piece. It’s the first one where I really nailed the look I was going for. A lot of it came from hours of experimentation with 3D models, textures and Photoshop effects, but it set the standard for most of my future pieces.
LM: Who are your favourite artists, past or present?
RO: I’m inspired by the likes of Hush, D*Face, Miss Bugs and Antony Micallef. I also envy Lucian Freud, Rodin and Giacometti for being able to create something I could never do.
LM: What is your favourite piece of work created by another artist and why?
RO: It changes all the time, but the first piece of original art I bought was ‘Betsy Kills Cowboys’ by Ian Seniff, so it’s a favourite of mine.
LM: Do you have a particular material, brand or technique that you swear by?
RO: Anything Adobe. I’ve been using Photoshop for 17 years and I’m not going to stop now.
LM: Do you have any advice or words of wisdom for aspiring artists?
RO: Unless you’re extremely talented, you may be pretty disappointed with your initial attempts at anything good. Time and effort are the two most important things in getting better at what you do.
LM: What can we expect from you in the future and is there anywhere you would like your work to take?
RO: I’m changing tack for a while; experimenting with some new styles. I don’t know the outcome at this point, but we’ll see what happens.