How would you introduce yourself?
I have two names which is always tricky. I introduce myself as Rob Lowe but I’m also known as Supermundane so I sometimes say that too, but never just Supermundane.
When did you realise you wanted to be a designer/illustrator?
I loved art at school but I didn’t know anything about design or illustration. When I was younger I painted birds, practised calligraphy and copied the logos of my favourite heavy metal bands. When I did work experience at a printers I found out about graphic deign and thought this is the thing for me!
Who have you looked to as inspiration throughout your career – how has this influenced your work?
I have been influenced by all kinds of people. The two sides to my work visually can be seen in outsider art and hard edged art. These things don’t naturally go together, one usually being very complex and instinctive and the other mathematical, simple and precise. Over the years these two ways of working have come together to a point where I have a very instinctive way of working with hard geometric work.
Tell us the concept and inspiration behind your designs for Strut and Fibre? Your hero or inspiration.
There isn’t really a big concept behind the piece but the starting point is a piece of work by Max Bill that I have on the wall of my flat. I took the shape central to this and worked off it until I had a composition I was happy with. I’m generally playing around with people’s ideas of perspective and how depth has a hierarchy that the brain tries to stick to, once you move away from things being where they are expected to be interesting effects happen.
What do you see as the power of print?
I’m old enough to have trained in graphic design when paste-up artwork was the predominant way of doing things. It didn’t last long and the computer took over and now is omnipresent in all aspects of our life. The problem with viewing everything through a screen is it flattens and homogenises it by removing context and putting a glossy sheen onto everything that is viewed. Paper is tactile in a way that a digital experience can never be. This is the reason print still exists and will for years to come.
Describe your typical working day?
I don’t have a typical day as such as I work on so many different things but it usually starts with me getting up at 7:30am, if my neighbour is about I might go over the road for a cup of tea. Then I do the email thing and start any work I may have on. This could be working on the computer, painting for a new exhibition, planning a mural, preparing a talk or just thinking of new ideas. This usually goes on until about 6pm then I might go to see some music or go to the pub, depends on what is going on.
What advice would you offer an aspiring creative?
Be honest with yourself and be aware of what are your strengths. People so often feel they have to fight to make something worthwhile but I’m much more interested in finding ways of working that feel natural to me. I think it’s a much more enjoyable and fruitful way of working.
What’s been your favourite project you’ve worked on recently?
I’m really pleased with the mural at Leeds train station that I worked on. I didn’t even have to paint it – it’s a 14m printed mural above the tracks – but it’s such a privilege to have a permeant artwork in such a major station. It’s always nice when I get tagged in a photo of it.
Why should you own a good business card?
In a very real sense it is the piece of you you leave behind with someone. It should reflect how you want to be remembered by the person you give it to. However that may be.
Our Paper Stocks8th September 2016
It’s in the quality, weight and texture in your hand where you’ll feel the difference.Read More
Delight, Ambassador Collection Interview8th September 2016
A good business card should embody everything you want to communicate about yourself.Read More