For this iteration of the VMF Artist Insider Series, we present three more micro-interviews – this time with artists Graeme McCormack, Tierney Milne, and Kyle Scott. Read on to discover the unique elements each of these artists bring to our city’s first ever Mural Festival.

courtesy of wizardsandunicorns.com

courtesy of wizardsandunicorns.com

GRAEME MCCORMACK

Also known as Wizards and Unicorns, all of Graeme McCormack’s work is imbued with magic and whimsy. While he specializes in creating alternate worlds in his day job as a concept artist, McCormack is also a talented illustrator. His work flips effortlessly from medieval fantasy to futuristic tropes – you’re as likely to see a knight in shining armor as a robot preparing for battle. Born and raised on the West Coast, Graeme considers himself committed to the Vancouver art scene.

 1.Tell us a bit about your work and who you are.

I’m primarily an illustrator and concept artist, currently working in the entertainment industry. My work mostly revolves around conceptual imagery and design so I spend most of my time in my sketchbook. I trained formally at The Alberta College of Art + Design and graduated in 2009.

2. Describe your Vancouver Mural Festival project – where is it, and what are you working on?

 My work for VMF was a collaboration with Alison Woodward and it’s currently in the alleyway at the corner of Hawks and Hastings. The piece centers around two Miyazaki inspired alleyway spirits having a delightful cup of tea and enjoying some conversation.

3. How does working on a large-scale mural fit into your existing practice? How have you had to adapt your style, and what challenges does that present?

It fit well into the conceptual and narrative practice I’m used to working in every day at Relic Entertainment, so it was a comfortable place to start when we were generating the idea. What was new was taking that and applying it to a large scale and with the use of actual paint. I am used to painting digitally, but the difference in medium and the technical skill transfer to traditional media was actually quite pleasant. After the first day of getting used to the scale, I really started to have fun with it.

courtesy of tierneymilne.com

courtesy of tierneymilne.com

TIERNEY MILNE

Tierney Milne brings an inventive spirit and hands-on attitude to all her work. A designer and illustrator, she often works in an unusual cut-paper medium in addition to more traditional methods of digital design. Her distinctively graphic images have appeared everywhere from concert posters to newspaper illustrations. Originally from Montreal, she studied Psychology at the University of British Columbia and has also worked as a digital designer for lululemon athletica.

1.Tell us a bit about your work and who you are.

My name is Tierney and I’m a multidisciplinary designer and illustrator from Vancouver. I love using patterns and simple shapes to create complex pieces that leave room for multiple interpretations and narratives to emerge.

2. Describe your Vancouver Mural Festival project – where is it, and what are you working on?

Colin Moore and I collaborated on nearly 150 feet of the Makerlabs building at Cordova and Hawks. The mural breaks down the coastal landscape into simple shapes and textures, connecting and piecing them together with bold patterns to create an abstract scene with familiar elements.

3. How does working on a large-scale mural fit into your existing practice? How have you had to adapt your style, and what challenges does that present?

Tackling this big of a mural has definitely been a change of pace– I didn’t need to adapt my style much at all but, as my pieces are typically digital or made of layered paper, I definitely learned a lot about working with paint. My biggest challenge was just how physically demanding painting in direct sunlight for a week was, especially when I’m used to sitting in front of a computer for days on end!

"Sally Ride", courtesy of kjscott.com

“Sally Ride”, courtesy of kjscott.com

KYLE SCOTT

Broad swaths of colour and expressive faces define Kyle Scott’s work. As stated below, the Vancouverite often draws inspiration from his native environment, even doing multiple “portrait” series of the buildings in our city’s diverse neighbourhoods. Though this will be the artist’s first time creating a large mural, his work seems like a natural fit.

 1.Tell us a bit about your work and who you are.

 My name is Kyle Scott and I’m an illustrator. A considerable amount of my work is directly influenced by my surroundings. I try to create narratives that are specific to Vancouver, particularly through representations of the city’s architecture.

2. Describe your Vancouver Mural Festival project – where is it, and what are you working on?

I will be painting on the Fontile building, and the image will focus on a reoccurring element of my neighbourhood. It’s a lion statue, typically found at the front gate of a Vancouver special.

3. How does working on a large-scale mural fit into your existing practice? How have you had to adapt your style, and what challenges does that present?

I’m used to working on a much smaller scale and I’m looking forward to breaking out of that comfort zone. This is the first time I’ve worked this large and I’m both nervous and excited to see how my work will translate.

Graeme McCormack, Tierney Milne, and Kyle Scott will be featured alongside over 30 other artists in the Vancouver Mural Festival, officially opening August 20th, 2016. For more information, find them at http://vanmuralfest.do604.com/

Text by Genevieve Michaels, Graeme McCormack, Tierney Milne, and Kyle Scott.