Robin Renard is a Brussels based Illustrator and a member of Blood Becomes Water art collective. He is well known for his grotesque and humorous illustration. Robin has worked with clients like Vice Magazine, Pickles Magazine, Banana Magazine, etc. He has held solo exhibitions in 2014 and 2015, and has participated in many group exhibitions.
When he is not making illustrations, Robin spends his time playing music in a band or going out on a non-league football match. To know more about him read our interview below.
A bit about yourself/background information?
32 years old belgian guy from a town called Tournai and currently living in Brussels.
What’s your average day like?
I’m trying to get some self discipline for a daily routine, waking up at 8am, black coffee + a good breakfast. Otherwise I’ll just go around listening to records and drinking beers. After filling my stomach I can finally jump on my desk, checking my emails, doing a tour on some blogs and watching the news. Then I’m ready to start working on my projects, it can be either sketches, research or finalising an illustration.
Can you describe your hometown? What’s the art scene like where you live?
Tournai is one of the oldest cities in Belgium and there is pretty much nothing to do, so people started to do their own things instead of waiting for cultural events or good gigs, loads of DIY people out there. That makes it fun and interesting in a way.
Brussels scene is another level I’d say, there are a lot of creatives in all fields, sometimes mixed-up. The fact that its the center of Europe, attracted a lot of people – also foreigners to come study or work here, which brings a lot of “fresh air” and energy to the local art scene in general.
Who are some of your favorite artists, illustrator, and otherwise?
To name few, Hieronymus Bosch, Ed Roth, Crumb…
What makes you different from other artists?
Im just being myself, creating & developing my own world and skills.
what’s your favourite medium?
Pen and black ink, sharpies. Something easy and fluent to draw with. I like to paint sometimes on bigger surface.
When you’re doing some illustrations, where your inspirations came from?
Everything that is surrounding me at the very moment when I’m in the creative process, like things I’ve seen in a supermarket mixed up with a scene on the streets I saw earlier plus an old cartoon of my childhood.
This potage is melting in my brain and I wish I had a magic tool to translate it straight on paper but unfortunately the reality is more like I’m sitting on my chair, roughly doodling, sketching until I succeed to put my ideas on paper and then I can work on a composition, reaching a satisfying level.
What is it that your work communicates? What are some specific messages you are trying to share with your fellow citizens?
I tend do go on the grotesque side of things with a good dose of humour – to exaggerate and dehumanise are my favourite things.
Now a big question “What is art” to/for you?
Art is when you worked your magic to make something out of nothing.
From all your works, which one is your favorite?
I could choose a few for different reason but I guess I like to see my work printed on a LP for instance.
Besides working and making illustrations, how do you like to spend your free time?
Playing music in a band or DJing is a good way to get free booze, so I kick the drums in a few bands and press start on the turntable at party’s.
We love travelling with my girlfriend when we can. I also enjoy going out on a non-league football match away with my mates.
Any future plans for the next year?
More work, more travels. Next stop Iceland.
If there had to be soundtracks to your works, what would it be? please name at least 8 songs?
- The Equals – Diversion
- Blitz Boys – Eddy’s New Shoes
- The Hallmarks – I know Why$
- Wire – Champs
- The Hex Dispensers – I’ve Got My Doppelganger On
- The Reatards – Break Down
- Screaming Lord Sutch The Savage – She’s Fallen In Love With The Monster man
- The Kinks – Come On Now