Our Art Editor, Sarah Ennals, recently interviewed Luke Spooner about his artwork. Here are three samples:
"Puss With Guns" is from a little series, again an on—going one, that I like to add to every now and then called "Imagined." I love fairytales and fables as I think they are one of the most effective modes of story telling and help a lot of us to learn and appreciate the fundamentals of the most basic of life lessons. I really liked the idea of expanding or re-imagining those stories that meant so much to me for a more contemporary audience, still retaining that sort of child friendly edge but maybe expanding on it. I say child—friendly but we all know how dark these kinds of stories are in nature and that was one of the most alluring parts for me. I always produce one image for each story, but it's usually accompanied by a very short summary or story of the piece and it's usually left open ended so that whoever reads it can then allow their mind to go on a nice little ramble and come up with there own "What happens next?" I think the little stories are included with each image on my site . . . if not then anyone can drop me an email and I'll email a link to the last post I made with the story attached ⌣
"Idle Ghosts" was actually a university project, I sat in open spaces and just absorbed conversation before translating it into illustrations. The idea behind was the idea of ghosts. The very definition of ghosts suggests something that has passed or is previous to our current life and you always hear older people saying "oooooh in my day!" So what happens to ghosts when today becomes past? In other words—are there going to be chav ghosts haunting the people of the future? Will there be ghostly marines patrolling irag and afghanistan like the world war 1 and 2 soldiers that elegedly pop up in burial sites today? It intrigued me. The final piece actually ended up being a CD, I wrote down every scrap of conversation, sat in a dark echoey room and repeated all the conversation in my most ghostly of voices (a different one for every ghost) and then burnt it all to a CD which the illustration then became the packaging for :)
"Flashy Squid" was another odd summer holidays project . . . I painted them while listening to the entire back catalogue of Electric Six a couple of years ago and just wanted to make something unapologetically dark. I was also feeling very nostalgic for my art A Level course, a fundamental part of which (for reasons that now escape me) was to draw skulls. I kid you not, one of the teachers, every lesson, would make us delve into a box of skulls (her classroom was an old science room so these things were just kicking about in abundance) and paint whatever we pulled out in a variety of mediums on everything from a full wall right down to thumbnails. Now this was very exciting, the anticipation of whose severed head you were going to pull out of a box was almost too much to take and some people got monkey heads, other's got bears—someone claimed to have a cow skull with a bit of dried up brain in it but that person was naturally a show off so everything they said had to be taken with a pinch of salt. I however, week after week picked out the same of sheep/goat skull. So I became an expert in painting that type of skull, I actually miss it now, I recently went on ebay to try and find my own but it turns out that they are ridiculously expensive and none seem to have that appeal that my first skull had . . . . Sad times indeed. Anyway—that's why the characters in "Flashy Squid" are wearing sheep/goat/ram skulls. The word "Flashy" in the title was also a reference to the most recent Electric Six album at that time which was called "Flashy."