CGM – Who are you and what do you do?
TT – My name is Tristan Tait and I’m a freelance illustrator. I’ve worked on a number of published children’s books, created album artwork and merch for bands and have way too much fun drawing strange and grotesque characters
CGM – Why do you do what you do?
TT – I’ve always drawn, and I’ve always liked things that are a little weird… it just felt natural to combine the two. Now I’ve found there’s other people that seem to like what I do and so I now I get do it all the time. It’s a pretty sweet deal really haha
“Well, that’s ruined my childhood”
CGM – What art (style or artist) do you most identify with?
TT – Depending on the job, I like to mix my styles up a lot and so it’s a bit tricky to say ‘this is what I identify with’. Overall, I guess my work is a mix between caricature, surrealism, low brow street art and classic children’s book illustration. Not that it’s directly any of those, but I guess there’s similarities.
CGM – What’s your favourite artwork? Or What is your dream project?
TT – My dream project would have to be a character designer for a video game, toy line or cartoon series. A couple of years ago I designed a character for a film that was turned into a stop motion puppet and it was the coolest thing ever! Being able to see my drawings in a physical form, moving around is so much fun, I’d love to do more of that
CGM – What memorable responses have you had to your work?
TT – “Well, that’s ruined my childhood”
CGM – Should art be funded? What role does arts funding have?
TT – In short, yes. Artists must be paid for their work. And they must be paid fairly, like any other profession. As for government funding, I think less should be put into public displays, and more of the focus should be on helping to set up events such as these, which help to bring communities together and inspire new artists and creatives. There’s nothing more inspiring than seeing and meeting new people you can relate to, that are local, of similar age and interests and seeing just how they have made something of their art and thinking “wow, maybe I could do this too!”. I’m not saying take all funding away from street sculptures or anything, because I get their importance too… but some of them have been well overpaid for
CGM – What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given?
TT – Nike – Just Do It.
CGM – Shop. Canberra Geek Markets is all about local artist and vendors, where can people buy your stuff?
CGM – Play. Canberra Geek Markets is all about fun! What superpower would you have and why?
TT – Teleportation. Easy. I’ve had this conversation a few times so I’ve got it all figured out. If you use it properly, teleporting can pretty much replace a bunch of other powers. You’re faster than super speed, and you don’t need to fly if you can keep teleporting through the sky. You can also kind of fake the whole invincible thing if you’re quick and teleport away from danger at the right time. Or if you keep teleporting while moving, you can effectively build up your momentum and make yourself seem stronger.
It would also help with all the regular things too, like getting to the fridge when I’m hungry, or just avoiding traffic and crowds…. Actually, now I think about it, it would probably make me the laziest person ever. But I’m fine with that. Laziness can be superpower, right? The Teleporting Slothman
CGM – Geek. What do you, Geek out about?
TT – I watch way too many movies and TV shows. I love old B grade sci-fi and horror, kung fu films, animations, bad movies in general (Troll 2 anyone?) and anything that’s a bit psychologically weird.