This monthâ€™s featured artist is talented concept artist Jeremy Love. Originally a sign writer and graphic artist, Jeremy tells us about his path to the world of 2D concept art.
What were your childhood inspirations and earliest artistic memory?
I think coloring books were definitely the gateway drug for me, then later copying from comics. In preschool school I'd often sit around with some friends and draw crazy stuff like astronauts being torn in half. Childrenâ€™s books like The Bunyip of Berkeleyâ€™s Creek inspired my imagination early on and I read a lot of Choose Your Own Adventure books, which had cool cover art and strange stories. Artists like Brian Froud, Iain McCaig, Boris Vallejo and Frazetta all had an influence. Even the album covers in my dadsâ€™ record collection. Jim Hensonâ€™s creations were a huge part of my childhood for sure and of course I was obsessed with Star Wars.
One of my earliest artistic memories was when I was about 8. Me and another kid were chosen to help some local sign writers paint an Alice in Wonderland mural on the school wall. I knew then I wanted to do something with art. The mural is still there 30 years later.
1985 - The only drawing I have from my childhood, a sketch of a fisherman statue, age 10
What training have you had (if any)?
Nothing formally. I was pretty keen on going to art school, but never thought it was an actual option. I figured it was too expensive and only for the gifted students. Schooling in art was quite limited compared to now, and I'd never heard of a career in concept design. I left home at 17, so it was straight into whatever job that would pay the rent. I had a lot of unpleasant jobs, but it gave me a good work ethic. Eventually I did get some work experience in a small print shop, which started me off in the right direction. The best training I've ever had is on the job. There's nothing like the pressure of a deadline and the wrath of a boss to accelerate the learning curve.
1998 - First acrylic painting, age 23
Are there any particular schools or courses that youâ€™d recommend?
Thereâ€™s nothing that I can recommend from personal experience, but I'd imagine that any good art school is a great start. There are loads of self-taught artists with amazing careers too, so it's up to the individual I guess. There are many more options now than when I started out, that are tailored to concepts artists and illustrators. It seems the internet has become the main source for education, with so much information available.
I do think young artists need guidance though as it's so tempting to race through the fundamentals to start doing cool stuff. There are so many studios doing great workshops these days and you donâ€™t have to search too hard to find one near you. If you are in Australia, CDW in Adelaide do very good classes with top artists. I think learning from artists that inspire you is really beneficial. I will say that online art forums gave me a huge boost, especially competing against other artists in weekly challenges. It's a good gauge to see how you are progressing and there's nothing better than some healthy competition.
2000 â€" Acrylic painting of a tree frog, age 25