We are so excited to be working with Rob, aka SUPERMUNDANE. He has been a graphic designer, artist for more than 20 years, originally coming to London to work with the makers of the lava lamp in the 90's. We're lucky to call him a friend, and it's been a pleasure to work with him on our Christmas collection.
Take it away Rob!
Tell us how you became Supermundane?
I trained as a graphic designer in the 90s but I have always worked on my own art in my spare time. The word supermundane means ‘beyond earthly things’. I liked the way it meant the opposite of what people think it means. Gradually the design work has been replaced by my art and illustration, which is now how I spend all my time.
Where did your love of illustration and design come from?
I never thought I would be able to make a living out of doing what I do today, I didn’t know there as such a job when I was at school. I have always loved art (and music but I’m not as good at that). There’s something about the vernacular nature of design and illustration I like. It’s art for the masses.
Where are you originally from?
I’m from a small town called Fazeley in the West Midlands. It’s near a bigger town called Tamworth and about 15 miles north of Birmingham. The estate that I grew up on (where my mum and dad still live) is next to a theme park called Drayton Manor. You can hear the screams of people on the rides when it’s open.
How long have you lived in London?
I moved down here 24 years ago for a job with Mathmos, the inventors of the lava-lamp. It was a great time to be young and in London. The 90's seems like a simpler time looking back.
You’ve worked in lots of different mediums – what is your favourite (if any) ways of working and why?
I’m not as concerned with process as I am with outcome. So, which ever medium is the right one for what I’m doing at the time is the one I will use. That might be the computer, pencils and templates or paint and tape if I’m making a mural. My approach is pretty much the same regardless of the medium.
When I think of your work, the first thing I think of is colour and shape – what comes first for you when you start sketching things out? Is there a process that you follow or is it different with each project/idea?
I tend to make a very rough sketch to get the idea in my head out onto paper. This isn’t something I show people, but it often contains everything I need to make an artwork. Sometimes I will start straight on a computer and build an image line by line. I don’t tend to work with shapes (apart from circles and squares) it’s more about the hierarchy of lines and playing with depth. I mainly use just 90 and 45 degree lines and circles and squares. I’m always amazed how much can be done with so little. Sometimes I’ll use other shapes and angles, but often it doesn’t seem necessary.
Is there anything on your dream project list that you’d love to do?
I would love to make a permanent sculpture of one of my form pieces. I’ve made small maquettes but the dream it to have a 20ft version one day.
What is on your Christmas wish list this year?
My family don’t really do presents anymore but I usually treat myself to something. This year I have already bought myself a fancy changing robe for post swimming; this is my fourth year of swimming through the winter at Tooting Bec Lido.
We love to learn about people doing great things that we might not know about. Anyone that you want to shout out about?
Well, my favourite music at the moment is by a band called Shop Regulars, I love the book Kingdomland, Rachaels Allen’s first book of poetry and the art of Stefan Marx who has a book of his word pieces out now.
Thank you very much Rob! x