FRONT Magazine



Hello Norm from Waste Studio. Talk us through a typical job, from idea to completed piece.
We work with a colourful array of clients so we spend our days switching between graphic designer and illustrator. Once we’ve explored every orifice of our brains we get pencil to paper and finger to mouse. The illustration jobs we get through the door start life with a loose brief followed by initial sketches. From there, we develop the design composition and add more details. Once the final sketch is approved we begin the inking up stage. We use brushes and Indian ink for this. We then down tools and scan the final inked version into the computer for colouring, shading and highlights.

What’s your office like?
Our studio can only be described as a cross between a boy’s bedroom and an antique shop. We surround ourselves with all the stuff we’ve collected over the years. On one shelf there’s my collection of old cameras, on the other theres a load of vinyl toys. We’ve got an old letterpress machine with drawers full of old lead type in the corner and a Scalextric circuit in the other. We’re inspired by a lot of the traditional craftsmanship like sign writers and screen printing that is sadly dying out nowadays.

Who/what inspires you?
Graphic novels and comics, especially by Daniel Clowes, Chris Ware, Charles Burns (his line work is next-level), Cartoon Network, Adventure Time, Regular Show, old after-school cartoons like Ren & Stimpy, old Disney, the English countryside, bears, toys, Gloomy Bear, Tofu Oyako, Santa Cruz, Ed Roth and hot rods.

What illustration are you most proud of?
Probably the set of characters we designed for New York company, Milk. We went over to America to visit them and saw our work all over NYC on the sides of delivery vans. That was a pretty proud moment I think.

Who do you most aspire to work with?
We would love to collaborate with a toy company – to produce our very own vinyl toys and merchandise, is our all-time dream.

Any words of wisdom for aspiring artists?
Do it for the love, not for the money.

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