This month, we put pen to paper with David Rees from Cronulla Folk, the Illustration studio based in Cronulla NSW, Australia. Cronulla Folk has a bold and minimal approach to vector art, with each artwork bursting with color. Keep a lookout for Cronulla Folk’s work that can transport you straight into Australian summer… with a martini in hand.
How long have you been an illustrator, is there a story behind how you started?
I’ve been an illustrator officially for the last couple of years but as a designer, I’ve been using and developing my illustration style for the last 15 years. It was always my go-to tool to get out of a creative corner or solve a problem when I was feeling a bit stuck. Once I realise that this was my comfort zone I thought I better grow this skill and play to my strengths.
What tools, software, supplies do you use to create your artwork?
All of my work is created using the Adobe suite. However, I’ve recently been playing around with Procreate, mainly for scamping and concept development.
What is your favorite style of illustration and why?
Obviously, I love the Art Deco/Pop art style. I think it’s a great way to communicate conceptual ideas and narratives in a fun and graphic way. I’m also a bit obsessed with anything ‘street art’, especially when it leans more toward the illustration world vs. the more traditional ‘Hip-Hop’ style of graffiti. I am still waiting for the right brief to drop so we can get our work up on a wall or a hoarding.
Who or what is your biggest inspiration when creating new pieces?
My biggest inspiration is the outdoors. Most of our work starts with a camera and, as you can probably tell from our folio, being near the ocean. As a brand, that’s how our story began – early morning beach walks with a camera and observing local peoples’ relationship with the coast. People are just obsessed with the ocean and it’s the most inspiring and motivating thing to see.
What art trends are you following?
I don’t really follow any specific trends, I just put aside a few hours a week to make sure I’m up to speed with what’s happening in the graphic design and adverting world. I do have a few illustrators who I like to keep an eye on but there are so many good illustration feeds on Instagram that it’s pretty easy to keep up with what’s going on out there. I also think that you should just focus on your own work sometimes. You can get a bit distracted with social media and forget to sit down and think seriously about what it is you want to create. It’s a bit of a balancing act.
How would you like people to describe your art?
Pop-Art meets Art Deco. We have dabbled with a couple of other styles this last year, based on briefs that land on our digital doorstep but we generally come back to our core style which is where I’m the happiest.
Is there anything else you would like the readers to know about you and your work?
We are always trying to evolve our work so watch this space. Also, we are always open to new briefs and collaborations so if any readers would like to get in touch and discuss a project or an idea please feel free. Some of our best projects have come from people reaching out on social media or email and asking us for a creative hand.
Follow Cronulla Folk
Keen to contribute and see your work showcased on Mixkit?
Visit our contributor page and become a member of the growing Mixkit Art community.