Victoria’s Secret model Candice Swanepoel stars in ‘Hard Candy’ by Sharif Hamza for the June 2013 issue of Interview Germany. Styled by Julia von Boehm, Candice is seen in various states of undress in a vintage car, wearing clothing from the likes of Givenchy, Balenciaga, Chanel, Lanvin, Versace and Dior amongst other labels. Gorgeous shots of a beautiful woman, several of which are NSFW.
Famed songwriter and president of ASCAP Paul Williams is the guest on Daft Punk's eighth episode of their ongoing series, The Collaborators, brought to you by The Creators Project. Williams starts out by expressing his admiration for the Parisian duo's ability to stay cloaked in anonymity. He goes on to explain the mental process that the song "Touch" was written from by weaving in anecdotes like any grandfather would. He describes "Touch" as an "emotional" "nine minute journey" created with "elegance" and "grace." Its composition has "gorgeous melodies" and its lyrics were written from an "unidentified first person" perspective. Daft Punk's highly anticipated album, Random Access Memories, comes out May 17.
Miami-based artist, Jason Seife initially made a name for himself when he designed Big Sean‘s famous lion Jesus piece. Then in 2011, Sean and directors Mike Carson and Mike Waxx commissioned Seife to paint the background for the “Dance (Ass) Remix” music video featuring Nicki Minaj. After working with Sean, Minaj, and creating cover art for Pharrell Williams and Mac Miller, Seife is now branching out into the fine art world by launching his brand new website The Departure Project.
When did you realize your love for art?
My love for art began at a very young age, when I was in elementary school my art teacher realized how well I drew and encouraged me to apply to a magnet school for art; I ended up enrolling. As I got older, there was a particular high school I really wanted to attend because an uncle of mine was an alumni. All through middle school I worked on building my portfolio with hopes of being accepted, and at the end of my 8th grade year I applied and auditioned. I got called back, but later found out I had been denied.
I took it pretty rough and ended up resenting art for a while, I picked up guitar and played in different bands throughout high school. After I graduated I was in a band full time and it wasn’t until 2009 that I realized how much I had missed art, I gave up music and decided to pursue art full-time.
How did your relationship with Mike Carson and Mike Waxx begin?
In May of 2011, I reached out to Mike Waxx at ILLROOTS because I had been a fan of the site for some time. I sent him my portfolio and told him if they ever needed any artwork to let me know. It just so happened that I was heading to New York City while they were working on some stuff for Watch the Throne, we were able to meet up and we clicked really well. Thankfully they liked my work, and I was able to do some stuff for them and their ILLAMERICA line.
How did the Big Sean lion Jesus piece come about?
Mike Waxx reached out to me when Big Sean was looking for a design for his chain. Sean wanted a Jesus piece based around a lion, I jumped at the opportunity and sketched up three or four examples and sent it to Waxx. Sean really liked one of the designs, we made a couple of tweaks and Waxx took it to Jacob the Jeweler; the rest is history. Sean ended up liking the design so much he requested a color version for use on his logo and merchandise. The lion Jesus piece is what led to the murals that I painted for the “Dance (Ass) Remix” music video, which Waxx and Carson directed.
Have you ever considered doing a collaborative collection with any fashion brands? Who would you like to work with?
Yeah, it’s definitely something I’m interested in. KAWS is one of my favorite artists, I especially love the way he’s been able to take his art into so many different outlets. I wouldn’t say that I have any particular brand in mind, but I do have a lot of ideas for incorporating my designs and artwork into clothing, skate decks, accessories, etc.
Who are some of the creative people that influence your work?
Some of my favorite current working artists are Daniel Arsham, Jose Parla, Takashi Murakami and, as mentioned before, KAWS. A few of the other creatives that have influence me and my process are Kanye West, Virgil Abloh, Pharrell Williams and Christopher Nolan.
What’s the most difficult part about being an artist in the 21st century?
Thanks to the Internet I think there’s very little difficulty in the 21st century, but it’s a blessing and a curse at the same time. The Internet allows for you to get your work in front of others with ease, and finding inspiration has become a lot easier, too. But at the same time, the difficulty in it is the over saturation. It can be discouraging to an up-and-coming artist because being able to find your own lane can be very difficult.
On the other hand, I remember growing up and always feeling intimidated by the “art world.” It appeared to be a high class club, one that you needed to be of a certain wealth, or family, to be a part of. I think nowadays that has changed a lot with so many graffiti artists becoming gallery artists, and with the incredible amount of young people beginning to show interest in the “art world.” There’s a really strong movement from young creatives right now and I’m glad to be a part of it.
Haha yeah, it’s actually a funny story. When I was a kid I always used to get colors wrong when referring to my mom’s car as green when it was actually blue. It was the worst with blue/green and red/purple. My mom just thought I was stupid and didn’t know colors, until I went to the eye doctor and took a test, and failed miserably [laughs]. I was diagnosed at around 8 or 9 years old. It’s not extremely terrible or anything, I can clearly tell the difference between a red and green stoplight [laughs].
It’s common in some of my paintings for something I see as a dark green or subtle blue to actually be a bright teal to most people. But then again who knows, maybe I’m right and the rest of the world is wrong! Haha.
Tell me a little bit about The Departure Project.
I started The Departure Project in order to distance myself from boundaries as much as possible. In art, as in any creative outlet, people are quick to pigeonhole or label you. You’re either a painter, sculptor, graphic designer, photographer, etc. I’ve always found it hard to stick to one medium or style. I like to evolve as much as possible, I like to try new things and refrain from being one-dimensional. I don’t want my past work to influence my future work.
Some of my paintings are extremely different from my design work, and vice versa, so instead of having different sites for each, I wanted to have The Departure Project serve as an umbrella of sorts for all of my work. I love jjjjound.com, I wanted to create something that had a similar feel.
What advice would you give an up-and-coming artist?
One of the reasons I’ve been able to work with the people I’ve worked with is because I’m always willing to try new things. I think we as artists, a lot of times, can be selfish. We want to do things our way and sometimes you get stuck in a certain style; it can be hard to branch off and try new things. You should always be open-minded and willing to learn. The more diverse your portfolio, the larger the clientele you will be able to reach.
What are some of your goals and aspirations for 2013?
I would really love to show some of my work in a gallery setting, as I haven’t had the opportunity to do so yet. That’s at the top of my list of goals for 2013. Other than that, I just hope to keep learning and progressing as an artist – there’s still a lot more that I can improve on. I thinks that’s a crucial part to becoming a successful artist and staying relevant, I never want to rest on my laurels.
While Roc Marciano was in Chicago for a Closed Session and performance at Digital Freshness, he hit the studio with Tree, the rising emcee/producer who gained much notoriety with last years Sunday School mixtape. Roc and Tree definitely hit it off in the studio and after one thing led to another, Tree began spontaneously asking Roc Marciano a series of questions relating to Roc’s realization of skills, wordplay, and imagery within his craft. Definitely a dope clip. Lookout for Sunday School 2 coming soon via Closed Sessions, as well as the proper Roc Marciano CS as well.
While in SXSW Nardwuar recently came through with some brilliant insight on Trinidad James’s life and career. From his favorite Trinidadian foods to his favorite ATL artists (Bow Wow) Nardwaur kicks some mind blowing knowledge as usual. In-spite of all that molly and being one of the flashiest dressers in the game,Trinidad proves he’s a humble, well spoken and down to earth dude. Check out the interview below and don’t miss the ending; “This guy is the man at standing still… and he’s still standing still.”
DJ RTC was recently interviewed by the Chicago Reader about his decision to step down as E-I-C here at RubyHornet, in order to concentrate 110% on ClosedSessions. As I stated on #ClosedSessionsRadio last week, RTC & I are still very good friends and will continue to work together in the near future. In today’s Chicago Reader, RTC explains the reasons for his departure from RH, as well as going into great detail on what is next for ClosedSessions. There’s a lot to read, so I suggest heading over to The Reader site & check it out for yourself. Lookout for a special RTC feature on RubyHornet next week. Shouts to RTC for his honesty here. One of the most truthful people I know, who I can luckily call a great friend.
Peep The Interview by Leor Galil Here
Continuing HAVEN‘s series of Intelligence pieces — which can all be found here – ”GUERRILLAS IN THE MIST” features a candid conversation with Tetsu Nishiyama of WTAPS. A good read for any fan of the brand. Scroll through the editorial in the gallery above and head on over to HAVEN for a full look at the outstanding piece of work.
With all the success coming from A$AP Rocky, the rest of his associates are also getting a glimpse of the lime light. In this clip, we learn more about prominent crew figure A$AP Yams who sits down on a quick chinwag session with the New York Time. Also donned as the Puerto Rican R.Kelly, the drowsy Yams explains his relationship with Rocky and the crew, his southern rap influences, and comparing A$AP Rocky's highly esteemed album Long.Live.A$AP with Biggie Small's Life After Death.
Any way you look at it, Vic Mensa is a staple in Chicago’s innovative musical landscape. The college-aged musician has been swerving through all the correct lanes since 2009 and has countless solo material under his belt, along with his role as a lead member of one of the nation’s most exciting young bands in Kids These Days. What’s next you may ask? I spoke to Mensa last night at SoundScape where he was working on his a new solo project, which is tentatively titled The Internet.
“I had this beat machine for a little while and just bullshitted with it for mad long,” Vic says about the early stages of the project, one that will feature mostly his own production. “When I was on tour I was just sitting around, fucking with the beat machine because I was on the bus for so long. When I got off tour, I got into a groove of making simple ideas enough to write a song to.”
With Traphouse Rock released, and some time off before their next tour, Vic has time to focus on his own solo project, one that was born out of a mushroom trip in which he convinced himself he was the Internet. He stuck with the concept after the shrooms wore off and saw real world parallels to his crazy trip. “The climate of the world we live in, the fabric of the society we live in, is so amorphous right now, something that’s constantly changing,” he said during a break in recording. “I think the Internet is a representation of continuous change on its own, and I am that mothafucka.”
Vic is in the earliest stages of the project and has no expectations or reasons to rush out the music, but we could see something this spring or summer. Before then, he is still playing shows with Kids These Days and continuing to build with is SAVEMONEY camp. We’ll keep you posted on the new project as time goes on. For now, keep bumping that Traphouse Rock.