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01 April 2014, writed by Yar

category: tshirt

Christian Bogel: T-Shirt Designer - Graphic Designer - Illustrator Interview

Codburg, Germany -- Christian Bogel lives in a small town in Germany called Coburg.

He is a member of the band ARMS LIKE SNAKES, which has influenced him to design merchandise for bands all over the world. In 2004, Christian had a children's book published, called Petting Zoo.

Aside from this accomplishment, Chris has also illustrated many other cartoon books over the years.

We got on level with Christian, asking him some questions about his life and designs style.

Here's what he had to say...

When did you start creating art?

I pretty much started as a young boy re-drawing Disney art and such.

Was there a point when you began to take art more seriously?

I had to repeat one year in school so I started at the point knowing no one in class and all guys younger than me (hey, if you're 13 and the others 12 it' feels a lot more... ) brought me to a point to start working on my drawing skills. So I ended up drawing video game stuff every evening when I was home from school.

I was really into that cartoon-thing later, set up my first homepage with cartoons back in 1995 and released my first book with cartoons back in 2004 and had cartoon prints in the local newspaper every weekend.

If you go by one, where did your nickname, or “nome de plume” come from?

Good question. I still can't remember.

How would you best describe your style?

Well, there's a cartoony-touch as well as something weird and evil but,
always a good feel to it.

Who or what are your artistic influences?

There are a lot of artists that I enjoy looking at stuff. I really like McBess or what KillerNapkins are doing. I have a few talented buddies over here doing old tattoo styles, street art and yeah.. pretty much soaking everything in what's looking bright and weird.

When did you start designing t-shirts?

It was always a weird thing to me being titled „artist“ and doing cartoons where you have to settle one style and do it forever. So that was not what I was intending when doing art. So I started experimenting with colors, styles e.g. and started working on designs for bands.

Do you look at this type of art as business or just a hobby?

I am freelancing at doing art and designing shirts. It's just something I am not fixed to any guidelines and can mostly do my own thing with this.

Have you ever been ripped off? If so, was it subtle or obvious?

One of my designs appeared on a brands' site somewhere on the internet and they used exactly the artwork I did for someone else and showcased it on my page. Confronted with that, the brand took it down, wrote me that the „designer“ already got paid for it. What a loser. Stealing art in such an obvious way is not cool and will always be spot if it takes longer or less.

Is there any particular design you are most proud of?

For a German metalcore band I was working on an album cover for half a year – it took forever seeing it growing from stroke one – so it's always good to see something little grow over a long period of time. I pretty much like the stag I lately did for an upcoming brand too.

Is there a design that you didn't like, but received high acclaim?

Well if there would be something I don't like on a design I would not release it. So no one would even have the chance to acclaim it in a different way than I would like to have it :)

Do you have any formal training or schooling?

Nope. Well.. I had art lessons in school but that was mostly basic stuff and things I am not proud of for creating that much. Most of it I really taught myself.

Do you have a college degree?

I finished junior high at the age of 17.

What motivates you in life?

It always makes me happy to see a finished design and knowing the client will love it.

Are you single, married, or have a significant other?

I am in a relationship with my girlfriend for nearly 3 years now. I see her on the weekends cause she's studying in another town an hour away. But she's great, I love to be with my girl.

Mac vs. PC?

When I work in the office I do have a Mac, but at home and for my designs I use a pc, doing it the rough way. *laugh

Do you engage in physical activity (work out, yoga, martial arts)?

At the moment I go to yoga once a week which I never would have thought my body would be so satisfied with *hah

Are you a fan of any sports?

I like soccer. And I enjoyed wrestling in my younger days.

Do you cook?

Mostly don't have the time to. Does making a sandwich and eat it also count as cook?

Are you a vegetarian or vegan?

I try not to eat much meat but going completely vegetarian would be a step too far at the moment.

What languages do you speak?

I speak German, English and a dialect called Franconian. But only if I am in the mood for it! Wässtscho!

Do you play any instruments?

Bass. I play the deep tunes and do a little singing in a punkrock band called ARMS LIKE SNAKES. I've been around with the boys for nearly a decade and we were touring Germany, Austria and Switzerland as well. Oh and I played clarinet in an orchestra for nearly 10 years.

Who are your favorite music artists?

I enjoyed blink182 a lot over the years and all the projects they were working on. The new make do and mend record is great. I've always been into the punkrock stuff.

Do you have any favorite TV shows?

I love watching Dexter or Californication and I am a big fan of lost – which was a big bummer to won't have the opportunity to see new episodes on this one.

What brands/models of cars do you like?

I am not the guy who is much into cars. I just use them and they have to save me getting from A to B to C.

What movies do you enjoy most?

Sideways and closer are still my favorite movies. I love the mixture of simplicity and complexity. Well and the Goonies were my favorite movie when I grow up with! Go for baby ruth!

Do you have any favorite books, book series, or authors?

I really like the old stuff that Stephen King wrote. And I like Katzenbach.

Do you prefer smart-phones or not-so-smart phones?

I had an old Nokia for a long, long time and wasn't sure if I would like it doing the step ahead. Now I have my second iPhone and I don't want to switch back.

What is something that you hate or absolutely enrages you?

Racism & violence.

This interview took place on 14/11/2012.

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