Exclusive: Interview with artist Andy Fairhurst

Andy Fairhurst artist

Andy Fairhurst

Foreword by Adam Brannon. This year has been a fantastic one for Movie Metropolis and part of that is down to the incredible array of fascinating people from the world of film I’ve had the pleasure of interviewing.

From Prop Store CEO, Stephen Lane, to The Lost World: Jurassic Park’s Vanessa Chester, Movie Metropolis has played host to a varied range of notable figures from within the industry.

Speaking to me about his fascinating career in film-based art, Andy Fairhurst shares some incredible stories about how he got started and where he plans to go from here. Read on for the full interview.

1) When did you begin creating your art?

Although I had been drawing for most of my life, I started doing digital art about 15 years ago.

Andy Fairhurst Nerds' Eye View

© Andy Fairhurst

2) What made you decide to get into film-related art?

I had aspirations of becoming a concept artist or matte painter but, in my opinion, I wasn’t good enough. I sort of transitioned over to the pop culture/alternative poster side of things because I felt I had more room to maneuver in that field and more artistic license with a lot of stuff being a play on words, or pictures in this case.

I was approached by Don Thompson who is the founder of a collective known as The Poster Posse back in 2013 and that got me more into the world of alternative posters and I’ve had some great work since and met some ace people.

3) What has been your stand-out moment?

Ooh I have had a few, but I think my proudest moment was getting a gig with Disney for 6 collectible cinema ticket designs for their 2016 line up of movies. That was definitely a bucket list moment.

Andy Fairhurst Up artwork

© Andy Fairhurst

4) Who has been your favourite client to work with?

It would have to be Bottleneck Gallery in New York. Thanks to them I got to do a lot of official Star Wars art which was another dream come true.

5) Do you have a favourite piece of your work?

I think it’s quite common but most of my stuff I end up hating once I have finished them but if I had to choose one I think probably my Nerds Eye View ‘Up‘ print I did a few years back. It’s just a nice cheerful piece.

6) How long do your artworks take to complete?

I am a slow worker so I probably take twice as long as a lot of artists out there. Anything from a week to a few to complete something but I often have different pieces on the go at once so will flit from one to the other when things start to become monotonous

7) Take us through the process, how does “Digital Art” work?

For me it starts out with a rough thumbnail on paper then i start sketching in photoshop. From then on it is literally a case of drawing it and refining it, using lots and lots of layers. I am quite messy throughout the process and don’t really have an organized way of doing things so I would suck at giving tutorials. But somehow I end up with something half decent I hope.

8) What advice could you give people interested in starting out?

Do it for the fun of it first! And try and come up with your own style. If you come up with an idea, search google to see if anyone else hasn’t already used it! It can save you a lot of backlash from the poster/film fans.

9) If you could create a piece for any film, what would it be?

Lord of The Rings is probably one, but I am about to get some ideas down for that so it will probably be a thing one day, whether for fun or in an official capacity who know. I’d also like a crack at some Music themed pieces. The Beatles is right up there on my list.

Andy Fairhurst Disney tickets

© Andy Fairhurst

10) One we ask everyone, what’s your favourite movie?

Aww man! Star Wars doesn’t count so I will go either Mad Max 2 or Jaws….or Back To The Future. Nope I can’t decide.

11) Another one we ask, what’s your favourite cinema snack?

Not sure how popular this will be but I HATE people eating in the cinema. It’s on a par with using mobile phones and putting your feet up on the seat in front haha

12) What does the future hold for your career?

War for the Planet of the Apes Nerds' Eye View

© Andy Fairhurst

I have no idea. I live piece by piece as a self employed artist. Work could totally dry up next week. I’m under no illusion that I am going to be doing this forever, so I am constantly thinking of what else I could do if there was no longer any interest in my work. I hope it continues for a long time as I love doing this, especially for a living but if not I will go back to it being a hobby and get a ‘real’ job.

13) Do you have any exciting projects in the pipeline?

I have some things lined up, but I can’t really say much because if I do they I’ll probably tempt fate and they will fall through haha! It has happened before. I’m hoping to do more with Poster Posse, Bottleneck Gallery and Grey Matter Art amongst others. But as of now nothing is 100%.

If you’d like to follow Andy on social media, check out his Twitter and Facebook accounts or sign up to his Newsletter to keep up to date with all his latest works. I’d like to thank Andy for taking time out of his incredibly busy schedule to sit down and take part in this interview.

For more interviews on Movie Metropolis, just click here.

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