Author Archive

MWM GRAPHICS INTERVIEW

Clout Online Exclusive
By CULT OF BEAUTY

Please tell us who you are and where you’re from.

My name is Matt, I’m 27 years old and I currently live in Vermont with my wife and our son. I grew up around Boston, traveled for a few years all over the states, schooled at a couple art colleges and got my BFA in Graphic Design and New Media. Now I work as a web designer at Burton Snowboards and freelance as MWM Graphics. I stay busy with graphic design, art, illustration, murals, career and family life.

What was your childhood like? When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you “grew up”?

My kid life was really dope. BMX, skating, kicking it in Boston and Cambridge, camping, lots of doodling, tons of creative friends, mischief and exploring.  I feel like I stretched “kid life” into my twenties. I straight lived out of a backpack for a solid 3 years. I traveled to almost every city in America and learned a lot of important stuff. Growing up I wanted to be an artist, and when I learned about what graphic designers do I knew it was for me. If you had asked me ten years ago what I wanted to be when I grew up, I would have said a designer for a dope skateboard or snowboard company. It is rad to be here now, ten years later, living it.

When and how did you get into graffiti? Which writers influenced you? What’s the graffiti scene like in Vermont? What kind of spots do you paint? Whose work are you feeling?

I’ve been catching tags forevs, but I didn’t rock a proper piece until I was living in Maine. I have a long list of writers I look up to, most importantly my crew and homies that I paint with. Cemek, Lerk, Past, Rich, Sub FA, Naste, Learn, Jurne, Lack, Untold, Niek, Chile, the list goes on. You’d be surprised how many writers there are in Maine and Vermont. Most people think cows and moose, but there’s a grip of freights up here too.

Have you ever gotten caught up or had any close calls? Chase stories?

Damn, I got mad funny stories, we all do. No orange socks for graff though, knock on wood. I’m usually the butt end of the chase story jokes because I’m so fucking ambitious with my color selections. If it is a day spot, I want to burn with like 15 colors. So I’m sometimes in the back of the sprint picking up cans I dropped. Mostly, we are blessed with some great cutty layups up here, and we are grateful.

What are some of your favorite spray paint brands and colors?

I love all colors, some of my stuff comes off mad fruity. Anything really, I’ll use it. Rustos are always legit. If it is 99 cents a can I’ll fill up my trunk. Never got into the euro paint, way too expensive. I was taught right, burn the wall with the Walmart Brand and stock tips, then get more shnazzy.

Quality or quantity?

Quantity with tags and stickers. Quality on anything with more than two cans. I was never a King Crusher, and I’m no Baller either. I’m big on innovation and originality.

Explain your love for letters.

I really enjoy abstracting stuff as far as I can push it. Playing with letters is a great way to explore ideas without getting to far out. It is only a letter if others can still read it. I am a fan of super legible stuff and crazy abstracted stuff, but I think the best stuff is in the grey zone between. Legible at 55 mph, but still having a funky and balanced flow.  There is a lot of stuff that I would get bored drawing, but I could doodle R’s for a month all day, every day.

Explain your love for black and white.

Black and white is just raw and uncut. Timeless and bold. And my son likes to color my B&W stuff, we make a great team.

What is your take or philosophy on design?

Design must deliver a message, inform or enrich your life… like a comfortably designed LazyBoy chair. If it doesn’t do this, it has either failed… or it is art. And this is fine if it was meant to be art, but I am so sick of seeing flyers or adverts that I can’t make heads or tails of, or websites that have all sorts of shit flying around but no central navigation. I could talk all day about design, but I feel these are big ideas that sometimes get overlooked.

Who have you designed for and what are some of your favorite projects? What do you have planned for 2008?

In the last couple years I have had some amazing opportunities to do both art and design for clients. Everything from car companies to whiskey to cell phones, and a ton of streetwear and fashion stuff. Fashion is always fun. Lots going on this year, I try not to spill the beans on client projects, but I do have a grip of art shows coming up, here and in Europe and Australia. Also 2 new books, my annual B&W Bangers 4 Book and a solo hardcover book published by ROJO of my art and design career thus far. Both available this summer. I’m pumped, 2008 will be dope.

Where did you go to school at? What advice would you give to someone that is considering a career in graphic design?

I took classes at RISD and SCAD, and then got my degree at MECA. It took me a while to settle down and get focused, and Maine was a good place for that. As for advice to people considering a career in graphic design, I say go for it. Believe in yourself, learn and respect the history of the craft, and always stay on your toes with new programs and techniques. It is a great career for anyone with a good eye for composition and flair. Some of my favorite designers are also writers. Hustle hard and blaze your own path.

Tools of the trade. What do you use to create your different types of artwork?

I try to stay busy across disciplines, and combine them when I can. Adobe software is the industry standard for design and digital art. Anyone that loves drawing with Sharpies will bust a nut when they try Adobe Illustrator! But I also do a ton of stuff without electricity. Watercolor paintings, ink illustrations, acrylic and enamel, pretty much anything that will make a strong mark.

What kind of music do you listen to? Who are you currently listening to?

I’m big on New York Rap, always have been. Everything from Hov to Def Jux. I mix it up though, on my drive home from work today my Nano spit out some Lil’ Wayne, Aesop Rock, MIA, Mr.Lif, Ghostface, and Qwel.

What kind of clothing brands are you into?

I pay close attention to the culture; it is fun to see all the great ideas and innovations as they happen in streetwear. Nuff respect to King Stampede, New Balance, SVSV, Everything KDU, Tank Theory, the list goes on. I’m spoiled lately with all the dope Burton, Analog, AK and Gravis stuff. For the first time in my adult life I have more than one load worth of laundry, thanks to a proper employee discount.

With all that you do, one would assume that you do not get much sleep. Especially with a wife and son, how do you find the time to do all that you do and how do you balance your life?

I’ve pretty much distilled my life down to what is most important to me, family, art, design, and knowledge. I work my days at Burton and my late nights on personal work and freelance. I hang with my wife and son for dinner and a game or movie after work and then hit the lab for 3 or 4 hours every night. Once in a while I pull a 40 hour weekend, but only if I have to. Its true, I don’t sleep as much as most people, but we don’t watch TV either. So I figure 3 hours not watching TV and 3 less hours sleeping, multiply that by 365… that’s like 2200 hours each year right there. Nice!

If you could go back in time, what era would that be and why?

Early 80’s, no doubt. I’d love to see New York during the early years of Hip Hop and Graffiti.

What are 5 things you’d like to do before you die?

Travel the world, Paint a piece that takes a year, Hike the Appalachian Trail, Learn to surf, and Relax.

What are 5 things that you think are slept on?

Graffiti without letters, Nature, Bass fishing, New Balance kicks, and Dreams. Mad people sleep right through their dreams.

Favorites:
Letter – R
Font – Avant Garde by Herb Lubalin
Food – Tacos
Drink – Sam Adams
Movie – The Bourne Series
Song – Can’t Knock The Hustle, Jay-Z 1997
Place – Brooklyn
Magazine – The Royal Magazine
Book – The Life of MC Escher
Designer – The homie Aerosyn Lex is killing it
Quote – Innovation is the sincerest form of strategy.

Visit www.mwmgraphics.com.


CLOUT MOVIE PICK #12 – WONDERLAND

 

The inspiration for Boogie Nights, John Holmes (Val Kilmer), also known as legendary porn king Johnny Wadd, reappears in the James Cox directed “Wonderland”. The well endowed Holmes hits the screen again, not for his porn career, but for his alleged involvement in the grisly Wonderland Murders. The sleaze tale of “Wonderland” begins after Holmes’ life of fame and fortune has hit rock bottom. Where once he was paid $3,000 a day, the now washed up, self pitying and self destructive Holmes has turned to a life of crime to support himself and his habits – even going as far as pimping his teenage girlfriend Dawn (Kate Bosworth). His desperation for cash and drugs and need for self worth is even more apparent when he sets up a home invasion robbery of notorious nightclub owner and convicted gangster, Eddie Nash, whom he had become close friends with. The robbery, carried out by LA cocaine kings, the Wonderland Gang, reaped $1.2 million and of course resulted in retaliation that resulted in a brutal mass-murder on Wonderland Avenue in the Los Angeles Hills in the summer of 1981. Lisa Kudrow plays his estranged wife who gives one account of the circumstances. Wonderland explores in Rashoman style, how it all went down from various points of view tainted by ego, self interest and drug induced confusion. The title is anything but.

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POP THE GLOCK

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We love Uffie too! Billboard by Andre. Click here to check out her myspace.


KANYE APPROVED – COOL KIDS l KID SISTER

 


I FLY LIKE PAPER, GET HIGH LIKE PLANES…

 

M.I.A.’s music video “Paper Planes”. This is the dope shit.