art | EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH BROM BY IVA KANCHESKA 25/03/2013
Hello Mr.Brom! It's a real honor to talk with you!
I'm so happy to interview you and share some of my thoughts with
you. To me, you're an incredible person, dedicated and extremely
creative artist. A person who loves art, life, a person who enjoys
to put some blood and sweat in his live journey and a person who
loves to talk and share his stories. Controversial, unique,
Art lover. What else should I say, to describe you!? Many people out there would probably say that you're unusual person with a different kind of perception, someone who knows how to make from a usual day to a horror - Goth fairy tale and actually make us smile in the end. However, having you here is a great honor!
Four books realized, many awards, so much to be told and to be remembered. I'm pretty sure that your just another role model to many artists out there... I bet your art journey is full with interesting and unusual stories! Let's start with the basics...
Q: How did you get into this job? Were you an artistic child or was it something you discovered later in life?
A: I've been drawing monsters from earliest memory. Making little horror books out of magic markers, notebook paper, and staplers. Same thing I do today except with the help of a computer.
Q: Do you remember your firs creation, If so what was it?
A: I loved dinosaurs. The kind that spit fire and eat people. Drew hundreds of them as a child.
Q: How has your work evolved over the years? Do you have any influences that helped you in developing your style?
A: Too many on the list, early on it was horror magazines from the 70's, then cover artist such as Frazetta, Corben, Jeff Jones, San Julian, then later all the Pre-Raphaelites like Waterhouse, and the Brandywine school of American illustrations, such as Pyle, NC Wyeth, Norman Rockwell.
Q: How would you describe your style in a
A: Absurd, gothic horror.
Q: Looking at your art world makes me feel like I'm a Gothic fairy tale. Love, aggression, sensuality, fear, possession, so many emotions that actually describe the human nature. There is also a surreal note too. Do you feel inspired by the Gothic style?
A: Yes, gothic in the true sense of the word. Certainly a combination of classic illustration mixed with the macabre.
Q: How much does the character design help you to express your own personal opinions, stories? Why did you choose the character design as your main creative line?
A: It is what I am interested in. It is my landscape.
Q: Beautiful, strong and seductive women, are really
eye-catching designs through your portfolio. Do you feel inspired by
the women's nature?
A: I approach most of my characters that way, whether man, woman or beast. I often paint characters that I would like to be. And yes woman can be very inspiring, they play to the wonderful contrast of seductive beauty and danger.
Q: Philosophically and creativity, seems like you try to blur the boundaries between the popular media and your own perceptions. Can you relate your art with you, emotionally?
A: I paint what I see in my head and try not to think any more about it.
Q: Have you ever connected yourself with some of your characters?
A: Yes, in a way I am co playing with every character I paint or write about.
Q: Do you believe in hell, heaven, maybe after life?
A: I believe in all religions, I believe they are all going to get me and drag me into purgatory. My artworks are there to show a window into my soul, beyond that it is up to the viewer to interpret.
Q: What would be the most rewarding aspect of your art, over the years of experience?
A: To be able to share my imagination with others.
Q: Do you consider art as a cure from all the daily-life routine and a perfect salvation?
A: Sometimes art can become the daily-life routine and I have to be careful to try new creative things to keep myself interested.
Q: Can you tell me about the making process? How do you cope
the basic ideas to the final design? Do you use a sketchbook?
A: Yes, I sketch up ideas, work them out in layers of tracing paper, then transfer them to a canvas where I put down several acrylic washes to establish the lights and darks and finally use oil paints to smooth out the textures.
Q: Do you also work on custom designs for clients? If so, share some of the coolest experiences.
A: Yes, working with clients can be very rewarding when giving room to pursue my own vision, but also can be very frustrating when the client wants to limit that vision.
Q: To be a multi-talented person, must be a blast! You work
on different mediums, from novels and games, to comics and film.
Awesome, indeed. Which medium you like the most? Which medium gives
you most creative freedom?
A: I'm a storyteller, with pictures or words. Bringing the two together is art at its best for me.
Q: Most recently, you came out with your award winning horror novels, “The Plucker”, an adult children’s book, “The Devil’s Rose”, which is a modern western set in Hell, and then “The Child Thief”, a gritty, night-marsh retelling of the Peter Pan myth. Wow! That must be an art journey. Give me a little description. How did you came up with the ideas?
A: The Plucker was inspired by the childhood belief of toys coming to life in the land of make-believe colliding with the childhood belief of the monsters under the bed. Devil's Rose started out from a desire to paint undead on motorcycles but a curious thing happened along the way, the characters took over the tale and the book turned into a much deeper story about redemption. The Child Thief was inspired from all the underlying adult themes in Peter Pan.
Q: Are you trying to make a darker version of the old
well-know fairy tales? If so, what would be the sickest or most mind
boggling art piece you would like to work on? No matter the medium.
Is there any piece that is still undone?
A: I have always wanted to paint Snow White having a really naughty time with the seven dwarves. Is that wrong (evil grin)?
Q: The latest masterpiece is "Krampus", the Yule Lord", which is a tale of revenge between Krampus and Santa. Would you consider that book as a great comic - sarcastic story? (laugh)
A: Sounds humorous, and there is plenty of dark humor, but it is played straight, and to me that's what made it so interesting to write. Something that should be humorous told in a dark and gritty style.
Q: Do you feel that the child in you still lives?
A: I am still attached and drawn to the same things as a child. In that way, yes. It seems I was born knowing what I was about and what I liked.
Q: Do you still enjoy drawing and writing as much now, or do
you feel jaded at all, do you still have the enthusiasm?
A: Deadlines are the creativity killer, but so long as I am allowed to pursue my own vision and have time to do my best work without pressure, writing and painting are ever a joy.
Q: Have you ever thought to change something in your style?
A: My goal is not so much to change something in my style but instead to perfect what I am trying to do.
Q: People could be ruff, jealous, crazy, super-cool... As an artist, what are some of your greatest challenges or obstacles you face while making your art?
A: Focus - there are so many creative challenges calling to me, it is easy to be distracted by other mediums, such as film and all the 3-d application, but at the end of the day I like prose and paint.
Q: What keeps you creative? What is coming in your mind
every morning while you go to work? Is there any trick that people
should know in order to become successful? (laugh)
A: Sometimes it is harder than other times to be in the mood to create. I do not have the luxury of waiting for my muse, so I just dive in, fortunately that is often the solution, to just dive in, let the paint take you.
Q: Art could be a great influence on someone's personality. What is the best lesson that you've learned from your art journey?
A: Trust your own vision.
Q: Do you have any advice for beginners?
A: Put in your portfolio the kind of work you want to do, as what is in your portfolio is the kind of work you will get.
Please feel free to share your feature plans and share your work info/ website.
Currently finishing up an oversize retrospective of my illustration work to date. Details can be found at www.bromart.com
Born in the deep dark south in the turbulent
sixties, Brom, an army brat, spent his entire youth on the move and
unabashedly blames living in such places as Japan, Hawaii, Germany,
and Alabama for all his afflictions. From his earliest memories Brom
has been obsessed with the creation of the weird, the monstrous, and
His career began as a commercial illustrator at age twenty. Four years later he entered the world of fantastic art by coming on board the staff of TSR (Dungeons & Dragons). He has since gone on to lend his distinctive vision to all facets of the creative industries, from novels and games, to comics and film. Most recently he's created a series of award winning horror novels that he both writes and illustrates: “The Plucker”, an adult children’s book, “The Devil’s Rose”, a modern western set in Hell, “The Child Thief”, a gritty, nightmarish retelling of the Peter Pan myth, and his latest concoction, "Krampus, the Yule Lord", a tale of revenge between Krampus and Santa set in rural West Virginia.
Brom is currently kept in a dank cellar somewhere in the drizzly Northwest. There he subsists on poison spiders, centipedes, and bad kung-fu flicks. When not eating bugs, he is ever writing, painting, and trying to reach a happy sing-a-long with the many demons dancing about in his head. If you would like to learn more about Brom’s particular brand of deviltry and future concoctions go to: www.bromart.com.