Runaway Dinosaur

For the love of the music…..

Rock Art Wednesday-Craig Howell

Posted by T Rex on March 25, 2008

I’ve seen a lot of rock posters in my time but nothing like the posters we have today. This week’s Rock Art Wednesday artist is the first one we’ve had to use digital programs as his craft tools. Craig Howell of Cheeba Productions is well known in San Francisco and was kind enough to take some time in between his father and artistic duties to talk with us. I highly suggest you visit his studio site where you can see more of his posters and other rock art from various tours, album art, etc….

http://www.cheebaproductions.com/

RD-Give us some background on the digital techniques you use?

CH-My primary software is Painter 8 & Photoshop, I tend to switch back and forth within those 2 programs as I am developing a piece.

RD-How did you get started?

CH-After graduating from the Art Institute of Pittsburgh. I got a job as an illustrator in the professional sports industry in a studio in Buffalo NY. At that point I was all traditional mediums, airbrush on bristle board illustrating logos, player portraits and team mascots for years.

I moved west to San Francisco in 1998 just as I was moving my illustration work to digital. One of my favorite things to do was going to the shows at The Fillmore and The Warfield and loved walking through the halls and checking out all the posters. So, my friend Gregg Gordon who was already creating posters for BGP hooked me up so I could get my work in front of Arlene Owseichik (BGP Creative Director).

There was one particular piece that she said caught her eye was an Elivis Presley portrait I had Airbrushed before I was working digital.

She was a big fan of Elvis and so I think it’s where it all started.

RD How long have you been making posters for BGP?

CH-Almost 10 years. My first BGP posters was Chris Cornell @ The Fillmore in September of 1999. I remember how excited I was going to The Fillmore for that show. It was sometimes strange for me going to the shows when I created the poster because they always had a framed copy of the poster displayed in the lobby for the guests to view and when you first get there you want to go check it out , see how it printed and you would hear the comments on your work and with them not knowing you were standing there…. the good and the bad critiques. You never know what you were going to hear. I would usually be there with other poster artists and it was as amusing to them as it was for me. But I would be there with another artist when they created the poster for that night, so it was amusing to be on the spectator side of that situation too. We all always took the negative things that were said with a laugh, what else can you do I guess. They would hand the posters out as the patrons were leaving the building and I remember standing outside of the Fillmore after the Guster show when I did the poster and this girl about 14 walked out and as she was walking by my circle she said “ugh, it’s a dead fetus” and everyone with me just started laughing… it was actually a baby in a space suit. So she was close at least/

RD-You are launching a new site to unload the massive amount of inventory you’re sitting on..can you tell us about that?

CH-With all the posters I have created since 1999 I would always get my copies like the artists do. Most artists sell them of on ebay , poster dealers or at the Bay Area record stores but I was pretty lazy with that and stored them away and my same friend Gregg Gordon “Gigart” would always encourage me to sell them and I never really did so I’ve still got all my copies stored in these blueprint cabinets from the past 10 years and recently was telling another artist who also creates posters Chad Grohman that I wanted to create an online store for people to buy posters direct from the artists, just so I could starting selling these prints of mine. Another friend who is a popular fantasy art illustrator Tony Mauro was interested in it also so the site was created.

The site has just launched and is www.posterpimp.net.


RD-What are some of your favorite projects you’ve worked on?

CH-In the Poster realm it seems like the latest ones are my favorite creatively because I see growth in my technique so I think I would naturally gravitate towards my Smashing Pumpkins, Blue October, and comedian Katt Williams. But overall I enjoyed working on two projects that they specifically wanted 2 seperate posters because they were playing 6 straight shows at the venue. one was Social Distortion and the other was Counting Crows and on both occasions I created two posters that when put together make one larger poster and I’ve always felt those were favorites of mine.

RD-What are you currently working on?

CH-I recently worked on Bullet for my Valentine, 30 Seconds To Mars and Killswitch Engage for merch development. The next project I am working on is the “Death Cab For Cutie” Fillmore poster for their April dates in San Francisco.

chpumpkins.jpg

chradiohead.jpg

chcountingcrows21.jpg

chsociald.jpg

Check out past Rock Art Wednesday’s here.

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3 Responses to “Rock Art Wednesday-Craig Howell”

  1. […] http://runawaydinosaur.com/2008/03/25/rock-art-wednesday-craig-howell/CH-After graduating from the Art Institute of Pittsburgh. I got a job as an illustrator in the professional sports industry in a studio in Buffalo NY. At that point I was all traditional mediums, airbrush on bristle board illustrating … […]

  2. […] T-Rex has in store for Rock Art Wednesdays. Last Wednesday the column featured an interview with Craig Howell, an artist who uses digital techniques to create a new breed of rock […]

  3. […] T-Rex has in store for Rock Art Wednesdays. Last Wednesday the column featured an interview with Craig Howell, an artist who uses digital techniques to create a new breed of rock […]

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