You’ve recently graced Graphika Manila 2019. How was the experience? Was it your first time in Manila?
It was an amazing experience. First of all, just getting some sun in January is a bonus for me but Graphika was a truly special experience. I got to make some great and very talented friends, spoke to a crowd of people nearly the size of Brixton Academy (my favorite venue in London) and meet so many people from Manila who were so nice and accommodating. It was my first time in Manila but hopefully not the last. I loved it.
Did you get to walk the streets of Manila or travel to the islands? Were you able to pick up any inspiration or concepts for your art in the Philippines?
I walked the streets a fair bit. It was pretty intense but I found some cool bars and things to do in the …..area. you know what? I do a lot of these talks and kind of have a routine now where I turn up, hang around the city and leave to get back to work and didn’t quite do my research of the Phillippines enough so stupidly didn’t do my research and assumed you could get to the islands really easily from where I was staying….meaning I didn’t have enough time to do the islands but my friends Buff Monster and Grif who spoke went over there and had an amazing time. I was really upset when I realized I couldn’t get there but then just thought…it’s a good excuse to come back.
I was really inspired by lots of things in the Philippines. I saw some great art and old school signs that were very inspirational and apart from that, just hanging around with those talented fuckers that work at Marvel and all those other amazing works, that was most definitely an inspiration for me.
What’s the story behind the name “Middle Boop”?
One day I will think of a funnier or better story for this but basically, the name came from an in-joke between myself and a friend who I started Middle Boop with. We were at a festival called All Tomorrow’s Parties which, to me was a life-changing place to be and it was basically just an in-joke we had between us made up on the beach at this festival long into the night. It just stuck after that. Got me to the top of Google quickly and keeps people asking what it’s all about.
How would you describe your art style? And who are your inspirations?
My style has evolved so much over the years but I think one thing that has always been a common thread is the strong use of bold and vibrant color. So I guess the house style at Middle Boop is bright, vibrant and fun. I work with a lot of brands who are ambitious and driven so I feel my style can relate to a lot of these sorts of brands. I’m inspired by lots of things. A lot of my friends are driven and ambitious people who are doing amazing work in pretty much every different creative sector and their positive outlook always inspires me to push further or do more with my time. Stylistically I’m still inspired by all sorts of different styles and mediums. On the weird world cup project I worked on with Callum Stephenson last year, I got to work with twenty of my favorite artists and designers. That was a bit of a dream.
Wow. The last week was a pretty special stop on this weird tour. I spoke to a crowd of over 4,000 people in Manila and also had the pleasure of meeting and hanging out with some great and talented lads @clausstudios @swimmy11 @grif @justingignac @draplin etc. #BFF Thanks to Aram and Ella for all of their hard work in making this a truly amazing experience and to everyone who asked for autographs, selfies, bought merch and just made us all very welcome. I think I can speak for a few of us when I say the creative juices have been in full flow. #manila #graphikamanila #design #designtalk #lecture
How do you retain your identity or art style as you cater to your clients’ requests? Would you drastically change your style for a client?
Usually clients come to us knowing the house style that my studio offers so would be looking to work with us already know the sort of work we do so generally direct clients don’t push us too far from the work we want to produce but we’ve definitely had a few in the past who completely bastardize our direction and end up down another route. Also, I come from a background in advertising and still do a lot of work with clients on that side where styles are completely thrown to one side and it’s more about completely sticking on the brand. So I guess it’s a mix of both really. Which I’m happy with as it means we get a lot more variety of work and we can offer more services too. So to answer your second question, I probably would drastically change my style for money ha!
See more of Middle Boop on www.middleboop.com