Champion Studio Geoff Mcfetridge Contact      
Anthem Interview 2004      

You just got back from a brief hiatus in Paris. What was that experience like?

GM:It was pretty cool. I was there with my girlfriend Sarah and our 6 month old baby, Frances, it was a family adventure. I had a show in Germany and had some projects in France. So we decided to move there for 3 months. I had just done a show in Japan and in LA so it was pretty sketchy. We have been travelling a lot. I don't particularly like to travel. I did a lot of drawing and walking. It was inspirational, but I am not really a city person. I missed California a lot.

Can you give us a brief background on how you settled into art and design?

GM: I have always been an obsessive drawer. When I was making a skateboarding zine I discovered design. I liked moving images and type around just as much as I liked drawing like pushead. Pushing around images and shapes instead of lines. It still seems like I draw more than anything. Everything starts with drawing. Storyboards, sketches, shapes. Drawing opens up my brain. The Mind Portal, like I did for the cover. The cover depicts energy coming out of a portal, and it was drawn as a doodle would be drawn. It meanders and grows in a stoned way, it is a map of a transcendental moment. Most of what i do are ideas, that is just a thought, an abstraction.
Maybe it is conceited of me, or more likely naive, but I think of a lot of the design I do as art. When other people see it that is not the case, of course. I do not know the exact ingredients that make some of the design art. When reflectiveness eclipses appeal? when it is autobiographical? depressing? Design is a much broader term than art. It is easier to apply, so it sort of eclipses other definitions of things.

Your work appears to be multidisciplinary. Is this something you strive for?

GM: I am as multidisciplined in exact parallel to my restlessness. All of the things I do can be restricting either creatively or on a pragmatic level. I am too distracted to fight to be making something or to plot out long projects, so I have created my own momentum out of doing many different things. Each things seems to propel the other in some way.

As this whole genre of graphic, street and pop art gains momentum as a now-definable scene, how do you transcend the boundaries of being the 'flavor of the month', so to speak.?

GM: Look. If you are calling me flavor of the month just come out and tell me.

How do you compare your work to that of your contemporaries?

GM: I am not sure. It is hard to look at my own work, what I do can look like the work of a few different people. It is a sort of mess that over time might be an interesting mess or just a series mistakes done in sequence. I dont feel like I have even started to do the work I really want to be doing.

What does a typical day in the life of Geoff McFetridge consist of?

GM: Lately I have been getting up at 5 am. We take our dog and Frances for a walk in Griffith Park. Then I am in my studio. I eat Baja Fresh every day.
I have come to descover that everything I do is meditative. I sit and a draw at a large empty table. I ride bicycles to exhaustion. Surfing. Dirtbiking, mouse clicking, walking in the park. Much of what I do is done to reach a far of part of my brain. I have just been learning about transcendental meditation and I realize that I have been doing it for years.

How much does your environment play into your art?

GM: I like to be in a place that is easy to occupy. I do not want to fight for my space in it. California is a place for dreamers, drifters, people staggering and wandering. You do not have to worry about bumping into anything, or anyone..

What advice would you give someone who is just starting out in this field?

GM: Someone very smart once gave me the vague advice; "be careful who you work for." It has turned out to be very helpful to me.

What keeps you motivated? How do I revitalize the stoke?

GM: When things I am making sort of leave my control and become something surprising. I like to do things that I know nothing about, which comes up a lot in the film and animation work but also when I am trying to make something out of styrofoam. When making feels a little like inventing I am excited.

What does it take to be original in the 21st century?

GM: stop biting.




















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