Behind the Graphic: Jonathan Rodriguez on 2007 Salomon Octopus
29 Apr, 2009
Behind each snowboard graphic is someone’s ideas. A graphic can be born from a long car ride with friends, a silly design they walk by, in a dream they have…the list goes on. Each year there are thousands of graphics created, around an image, idea, story. Behind the Graphic is a series of interviews that I’ll be collecting over time with various artists/designers from companies who have designed graphics
Jonathan Rodriguez design for the Salomon Octopus won for the International Salomon Artwork Contest in 2007.
Shay: What snowboard is your artwork featured on?
Jonathan: Something I did for Salomon it’s call “Salomon Octopus”.
Shay: You won the Salomon Snowboards Art Contest in 2007. Did you come up with the idea specifically for Salomon or did you design it beforehand?
Jonathan: The challenge was to come up with something totally original for the brand, something showing the artist personal skills, so I try that and the idea really came after reading the brief. I chose the monster theme to be the vehicle of the following message: “You and your Salomon snowboard are a monster of powerful speed and adrenaline”, haha you know, something like that.
Then, I thought about a very “Old school comic” art direction, focusing more on the line value and keeping a limited color palette and it came up pretty cool. For the bottom face of the board I created a lettering work, you are actually supposed to read “Salomon” there.
Shay: What was the process like for making your work into a board graphic?
Jonathan: Well, I really don’t have a “mysterious artistic” process, I actually graduated as a designer, so most of times there’s a lot of investigation involved and I am also normally using a lot of typography, probably because of that.
Shay: Describe yourself as an artist?
Jonathan: Hard, hard question, I love drawing, I love typography and I like to mix them, like a I was a kid, also sharing memories and personal interpretations I have from comic books, TV, music and my life. As an illustrator, I just try to give something to people, because I believe on social art and feeling good or having fun with everyday-life-objects.
Shay: What are your tools for creating art? What about this specific design, what did you use?
Jonathan: For this piece it was only pencils, markers, ink and colors in Photoshop. But because of my previous experience in agencies and some different freelance work I had in the past, I am always open to learn and try different tools. Actually I recently “announced” an Art Direction and Graphic Design project, it’s call IndieColors and I hope this is going to be something big within some year of hard and good work.
Shay: What was your inspiration for this graphic?
Jonathan: Comics, creatures, typography.
Shay: How was the contest experience for you, would you like to continue doing board graphics?
Jonathan: The contest was great, because it made me more confident and now I am really looking forward to design boards or anything for the extreme sports industry, I find it as a very cool and positive thing to do.
Shay: What are you working on now?
Jonathan: Now I am doing my Masters in Media Art and Design at the Bauhaus University in Germany and I am also doing personal works for Pixelcanibal.com, but as I said before I’d love create graphics for anything related to snowboarding, skateboarding, surfing… cool stuff!
Shay: Thanks Jonathan for doing this interview!