Visual / Illustration
Sebastian Evans
Words by James W.
Illustrations by Sebastian Evans

Saturday 17th June, 2017

TJ : To kick things off, where are you now and why?

SE: Sitting in my bedroom trying to answer these questions without coming off as a huge idiot.
 Other than that I’m studying photography in Melbourne, hanging out with friends and not doing a whole lot more.

Since discovering these paintings were seemingly a simple outlet to photographs, I was curious as to whether you feel you hold the same attitude across both mediums? Do you feel that the same ideas that engage you in photographs also engage you in painting, or they draw upon different elements of how you see the world?

I think photography gets a bit dull at times and I just find drawing to be fun all of the time. I’ve slowly lost interest in photography over the past year or so. Maybe it’s just because I study it and have to talk about it every day and I feel like I’m beating a dead horse. Sorry to any of my lecturers that are reading this. 

Upon looking through a lot of your work it’s impossible to deny a super witty and comical nature to the work. Do you feel humor has a uniquely important place in the art world, regardless of the medium?

I think you might as well try and make something funny if you can. Nobody likes a fun sponge. 
But then again there’s a time and place for everything. Being funny can quickly turn to being insulting so gotta be careful.

A lot of ideas that come through in the drawings have their roots in reality but are at the same time very farfetched and absurd. Do you find your ideas for the cartoons coming from particular places and events in the world or is it more a case of letting your mind wander? Or maybe a combination of the two, like imagination having a snowball effect on the everyday?

Probably a bit of both. Depends on the drawing I think. Sometimes I just want to sit down and draw something for my own self amusement and other times I want to say something a bit more grounded. The ideas come from the stupid conversations you have with friends or something you saw on the tram or a meme on Instagram. I guess that’s why my drawings aren’t really reoccurring scenarios. Lots to take in. 

Do you find that there’s any specific kind of process you tend to follow? Is there a sort of set structure and level of discipline you tend to maintain in order to make new work or more just a relaxed flow of thought and action?

Zero structure sadly. Just wait for a funny idea to pop into your head and then go paint/draw it up. Things get a bit worrying when you haven’t had an idea in a month though. Probably would be good if I sat myself down and had to draw every day but then again that sounds like I’m making it a job, so maybe not.

Knowing you come from a skateboarding background, I can’t help but align your work with a huge amount of the extensive skateboard graphic world. Specifically guys like Jacob Ovgren, Todd Francis, Ed Templeton, Michael Sieben and especially cartoonist Joan Cornella. Has there been a conscious relationship between any artists like these and your own painting or has it just been more of an natural outlet of your own making?

Yeah! I’m sure when I see their stuff when scrolling on my phone it plants little seeds but not going out of my way to copy their stuff. It’s good to be able to see what a successful illustrator’s and artist’s process is though. Picking up on techniques to do certain things that I haven’t figured out yet. They’re all the big dogs that have done everything right so yeah, definitely try and take a leaf out of their book.

Make sure you state your party theme clearly. Eg. Exotic vs Erotic.

Is there any intention on pushing the painting work further in a more establishing kind of sense or is keeping it less serious something that’s vital to its nature as an outlet as well as the overall feel of the work?

I have absolutely no idea. The drawings are tied in pretty tightly with what I’m interested in at that time and that’s always changing. I don’t think you can make serious work when your subject is a middle-aged, short, obese, half naked and bald man but who knows. Anything can happen. 

Expect the unexpected. Always be prepared.