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ReDesign Feature

Last month I was interviewed by Nomy Borenstein from ReDesign, a design/illustration website out of Israel. The final article was published yesterday.

I’m flattered to be featured along such great image-makers (including the awesome Tin Can Forest! They have a bunch of books out with the foxy Koyama Press).

Here is a link to my interview. The google translation is a bit off, so I’ve included a transcript of the inverview below as well.


Can you tell us a bit about your background, when did you start drawing?

I was born in Beograd, Serbia in 1985, and moved to Canada in 1991.
I have fragmented memories of being 3 or 4 years old and drawing cowboys and animals with my dad in our apartment back in Beograd.

I attended OCAD in Toronto, Canada and graduated in 2009 with a BFA in printmaking.

In your bio your work is described as “the secret museum of mankind” and indeed some of your images evoke a fictional prehistory, how did you cultivate your style and themes?

In each image, whether it’s commercial or personal work, I try to reference historical figures/events, hybridity, deities, and monsters. Always monsters.

I worked strictly black and white for a while. That’s because I love old cartoons. Even drawing with ink on layered mylar is an old cel animation technique that I use in my drawings. Then I slowly began adding colour. Only reds and browns at first. They go together well, and I’m still pretty bad with my swatches. Working digitally has allowed me to really open up my palette more than ever.

Long story short, “fictional prehistory” is a perfect phrase and a lot less long-winded.

Can you describe your work process?

I’ll usually sketch out a really small 1×1 inch thumbnail of an idea, while working on more detailed areas on a separate page. I’ll re-draw the original thumbnail at a larger size and use it as a reference when penciling in lines on a sheet of mylar.

Each drawing or painting is planned out quite a bit, so the final image usually looks consistent with the initial sketches, only more realized.

You have done both art and commercial work– is there a difference?

I love both fine art and commercial work equally, but in very different ways.
Commercial work allows me to flex different analytical muscles in the process of realizing somebody else’s ideas. There is a strong fascination and appreciation that I have for collaboration.
My fine art work is an ongoing, self-directed project. It’s taken me down many thematic and stylistic rabbit holes over the years, yet it is the most challenging, yet loving relationship that I’ve had with a series of images. It excites me to no end, because I honestly feel like I’ve barely chipped away at what seems to be a universe of narratives, sequences, and a lifetime of drawing.

Sources of inspiration?

Graphics, diagrams, processes, evolution, history, the brain (not mine), playing basketball, playing ping pong, cartoons, Osamu Tezuka, and all my friends who make really great work on a daily basis. And many other things in my periphery, I’m sure.

What are you working on these days?

I’m finishing up a few private commissions, as well as 3 larger drawings for a group show in Toronto next month. After that, I’ll be in Tokyo and Beijing for October, meeting with gallery owners for a bit (but mainly relaxing and walking around with my girlfriend).



About Nik Dudukovic

Artist & Illustrator - Toronto, Canada

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