We joyfully welcome Kyle Peppler to our blog for our September Maker of the Month! An animator, cialis sale cialis graffiti artist, viagra buy a maker, muralist, illustrator, nicest man ever? – the list goes on. He is crazy talented in all the many categories he delves into. Like, SO. incredibly. talented. I’ve had the fortune of knowing Kyle for quite a few years now, and he never ceases to amaze me with the passion and skill he has for whichever artistic path he’s walking down. I’ve never met another person who dedicates all of their time to honing their craft, quite like Kyle. It seems like he is always striving to improve and inform his already massive skill set and it’s incredibly humbling to be around. He has the highest level of commitment for what he does, and you can tell when you are able to see his vast array of work that he’s built over the years. Ah! It’s just so awesome!!
When I asked Kyle to be one of our featured makers, he had mentioned that he was going to be painting a mural for a restaurant in White Rock. Of course Joyelle and I jumped at the chance to be able to photograph a bit of the process of something so big and we were not disappointed when we showed up to shoot that day. I can’t even wrap my brain around how you would go about painting something this big, but of course – that’s not what I do, so that makes sense. But it is what Kyle does (among many other things). He’s been painting for about half of his life. So a project like this, although still a big job, doesn’t phase him too much.
Have we ever mentioned how much we love doing this series!? Yes, yes we have. However, I still want to say that it was so great shooting Kyle in his element. It was very inspiring to say the least.
The day we went to shoot, Kyle was about a third of the way done the wall. We were able to see just how much intricate detail goes into a piece like this. A ton of layering, and a serious understanding of tone and colour, as well as a true knowledge of how to use spray paint goes into any well done mural. Kyle was kind enough to show us some of the ways he goes through and plans a big project like this. Way more hours than just painting. Amazing.
What a treat to be able see the ‘behind the scenes’ of an artists process.
Here’s the finished piece. If you ever get a chance to go to White Rock (just outside Vancouver) and check out this mural in real life – do it! It looks even better. The detail and colour is stunning. It’s on the side of Uli’s Restaurant and it’s right across from the pier. Such a beautiful area and the mural fits right in.
I love the texture and tones used throughout. It looks animated but in all the right ways and certainly represents our West Coast moodiness. So, so good!
I was able to ask Kyle some questions:
Tell us a little bit about what you do and the steps that got you to where you are today as an artist
Im a full time animator, i work here in Vancouver. Im pretty busy with that these days, but when im not at the studio drawin cartoons im usually at home drawin cartoons, or paintin one on a wall, or maybe makin one move with the computer. Ive only been using the computer to make art and pictures move about for about 3 years now, im still quite new at it. But im enjoying that whole new world at the moment.
The steps that got me to this point are probably just a long running passion to draw funny lookin characters since i was young. Over the years i have tried my hands at every medium i could get close too, including sculpting, air brushing and even tattooing. Im not sure if thats because i was always curious, or if i was just searching for what felt right. But no matter what the medium, im usually using it to create some funny lookin creature or person.
How and when did you get into graffiti?
I got into graffiti about 15 years back in high school. This dude that was already painting graffiti by the name of KEEP6, was in a grade above me and noticed i was airbrushing characters in art class. He showed me a few graffiti videos and exposed me to the sub culture. I really had no other people my age that were interested in art. It was the introduction to other young people that liked to paint pictures that was the most appealing. We both started painting together a lot back then, and we haven’t stopped yet.
What inspires your work as of late?
As of late, im really inspired by the people who’s work seems to represent a freedom that im still trying to achieve. Im very tightly wound, im a close acquaintance of anxiety. Therefore, im inspired by those who seem to have a looseness and an ease that looks so appealing. Those people seem to be having so much more fun then me. The older i get, the more my eye is drawn to big, fun, chunky, graphically pleasing images, as opposed to highly detailed and heavily rendered works. Lately, when i go out to paint for myself, im designing my characters to be bigger, and simpler with very bold lines with classic thick to thin lines. Its a style im really having a lot of fun with.
What was your process like for the making of the mural?
when i do a large project like that, its usually because i know i can work with the client. When i used to paint murals for a living, i learned most jobs out there are just more of a head ache then anything. If the client knows my work and has seen my style, then i know it will be a smooth process. I like to start by talking over beers or whiskey drinks. That way i can get a good picture of what’s in the clients brain. After that, i do some rough sketches to see if my layout is what the client was thinking. Then I come up with some color pallet suggestions and continue to define the imagery. It usually doesn’t take long to get on the right path. Then I’ll do a finished colored painting (digital or water color) of the completed mural. All the while checking in with the client and continuing to make sure we are still headed in the right direction. Once all that is done, i get to paint, which is the best part.
What are your plans for your creative future?
I am really enjoying animating professionally. My ideal plan is to slowly get into the world of storyboarding, which is quite a bit tougher but will allow for a bit more creative decision making on someone else’s cartoon.
Also, this year im going to attempt to create my own running cartoon with my good buddy and creative partner, Destro. we are writing and designing it right now. Its a big job, in DIY homemade style, that we will upload to Youtube and hopefully make a few more than just one!
What is your favourite thing to do when you’re not creating?
I love hangin out with my best friend Brooklyn! she is also my wife of almost 10 years now. We try and crack each other up as we ride our bikes around like a rough tough biker gang of two. Or we take our little english bull dog, Lola, to the park or to the beach. We have lots of great friends that we are blessed with, so when i get to have a chin wag with any of them i consider myself pretty lucky!
We were able to step inside Kyle’s studio/home that he shares with his beautiful wife Brooklyn (one of my dearest friends) and their darling dog Lola. Here’s the best part about their home (other than the fact that they live in it)…they’ve built a huge wrap around working desk into the living room (in lieu of a tv and all the rest of the traditional living room things) and it has become an amazing work space for the both of them. It’s such a great use of space and an inspiring area for fantastic work to be created.
Staying humble and true to one’s work doesn’t happen for many, but it certainly has for Kyle . If you met him you would never know how many artistic accomplishments he has achieved over his years as an artist. He’s one of the greatest people I’ve had the fortune of knowing, and I am so very thankful that we were able to feature him. Like always, it was such an honour to step inside his world and check out all of the great work he’s been doing as of late. Fun Fact: he still has all of his sketch books from high school until now, which is a ton of sketch books BTW. There’s nothing better than going through your old work and realizing just how far you’ve come. And truly, the work Kyle is doing right now is a testimony to his dedication. Thanks for sharing some of it with us, Kyle!
Check out this video Joyelle put together of our time spent with Kyle. If you are interested in learning more about Kyle you can follow his work through instagram here. You’ll be able to see more of his animation and sketches there, as well as some pretty cute pictures of an adorable english bulldog.