Artist: Jodee Knowles
Interview: Kate Andrews
Describe what you do.
I am an artist. I draw for a living. I draw everything in my life, embodied in the human form.
How did you find illustration, fine art and graphics?
I have come to learn recently that I dont know much about much, I am learning how to work outside of my little drawing box recently but its tough, so I can not comment. I only draw what I know. Every idea starts with a sketch, a drawing from the mind, so i think illustration is so important.
When are you most motivated to pick up a paint brush/pen?
When I have deadlines or people pushing me out of my comfort zone, it ignites my desire to come up with concepts and help my progress, this is the best time for me to be motivated.
Do you create more when you are in a negative or positive state of mind?
Positive mood, my works are normally dark and emotionally driven but I need to be in a complete state of calm focus and happiness to create my ideas. I also need to take time away from working on a daily basis in the studio to regroup my thoughts and concepts.
You describe your work as ‘heavily based on the human condition and the emotional state of mind that makes or breaks a happy existence’. Explain what you mean by this.
I am trying to understand humans, why they do the things they due, a lot of the time without reason or thought. I noticed lots of people can never be happy and honest at the same time and I want to understand why I am not meant for this world or why I can not connect with humans the way i truly want to. It is the idea of someone I prefer over them. I am trying to understand all the little things and in turn I hope I will find a content way to live.
Do you consider yourself a dramatic or eccentric person? Yes
Do you seek dramatic or intense experiences to feed your artwork? Yes
Who has made the biggest impact on you creatively?
I am inspired by my favourite novelist Milan Kundera and people like Matthew Barney as fuel for art. I have some incredible people currently in my life that have big ideas and are completely creative and out of my league, these people inspire greatly and have the most impact in my life.
Which 3 words describe your artistic style?
Dark, emotional, self.
How do you keep inspired?
My portraits are a reflection of ones memories and expectations, in which the concept of an intoxicating other is celebrated or hated by thematically dealing with the feeling of being torn between addiction and satisfaction – between excess and boredom.
Describe the last thing that made you feel awesome. Sleep
You have tattoos. Tell us what they mean to you.
All the tattoos I have recreate a memory or moment in my life of travel or someone close to me. My crosses on my hands remind me that mistakes are ok to be made. I have a tattoo that says ‘be brave’ from last year when I got really sick in my head. I also have a tattoo of a David Shirigley piece of a cow being milked by a woman and the cow is asking what the hell is she doing, that one makes me smile.
What is your biggest vice?
Alcohol and love, not in that order and not together.
What is your philosophy in life?
Dont take what you can not give back, in every aspect of life.
Who do you look up to? My Mum.
What do you value above all else? Nothing really.
When you are unsure of something who do you go to? My mum.
Music of choice when angry? Xiu Xiu.
Music of choice when elated? I just discovered Neil Young.
What’s something we don’t know about you?
My life is a sad realisation that I am not meant for this place.
Which 5 people would you invite for your ‘Last Supper’?
Sum your current mood up in one word. CUNT.
Finish these sentences:
In 5 years I will be…dead.
Life is awesome when…Im in love.
My style is…all over the shop.
When the shit hits the fan…I man up.
Instinct or logic? Instinct.
If you were an animal what would you be? Snake
What makes an awesome work of art?
Anything that is emotionally driven. Skill is irrelevant.
Most memorable artistic moment?
Recently teaching students at Santa Maria all girls school, it was very rewarding to see what I am doing is not going unnoticed. Having Josh Hartnett rub lipstick of(f) my teeth was pretty awesome too, dream boat.
Who is your favourite person from history and why?
Roy Orbison, he seemed like such a tortured soul and to continue to love and create when everything was taken from him, it inspires me to continue.
If you could be any artist who would you be?
Jodee Fkn Knowles
Where would you like to be in 5 years time?
Living Paris, in a massive studio with my delicious husband whom is equally as talented and we just make stuff, with no fear of anything as we have each other to ignite our minds.
If the world ends tomorrow what will you do tonight?
I would do all the things we shouldnt do morally in this world. EVERYTHING.
If money was no object what would you do? I’d be happy.
What advice would you offer aspiring illustrators/designers?
Be prepared for a life of constant progression in the mind. You never stop thinking when it is your job to create the ideas that dont exist yet.
What is your passion?
Love, Im brimming with it and have found no one to truly give it to.