Texas Art Spotlight: Jon Zig
Artist: Jon Zig
How did you get started as an artist? I started drawing when I was three years old, and have never stopped. Even though, as a youth, I had no idea that I would be an artist by profession; I was driven by my passion for art. Some teachers pushed me to do my thing, and do it well, others did not including my unsupportive parents. I think the ultimate jump to me was discovering Heavy Metal music when I was 12 years old. The album and shirt art was the shit! [It was] Evil and against the grain and an escape from the bullshit of church and mainstream society. Doing artwork for metal bands is where I am most comfortable. I do branch out and do other things though, art-wise. It keeps the soul from being burned out.
What has been the most rewarding piece for you so far? I cannot single it out to one particular piece. I enjoy being able to bring to “life” an idea a band or person throws at me. It really is a partnership. Of course, having had the honor of doing artwork and/or tattooing bands like Suffocation, Gorguts, Disgorge, The Black Dahlia Murder, M.O.D., Deeds Of Flesh, Devourment, HOD, Cephalic Carnage, Beheaded etc. is very rewarding to me, and I always look forward to the next. The developed friendships that have spawned from the metal music and artwork connection are great and many, and definitely has taken me places and given me quite the adventures.
What influences you as an artist? I am influenced by music, art, movies, photography, and the disturbing things that humans do. The list would be miles long, and would still be forgetting a lot. I am also influenced by many styles of art done by many artists; tattooers, painters, digital concept artists…the mind, human history and the many theories involved, the future and how things could possibly evolve or destruct, the universe, the endless void, the violence and growth in nature. From the smallest of life, to the collapse of a galaxy, my mind is all over the place most of the time.
Does your art reflect your musical taste? I am not sure how it looks from the outside point of view, or from a standpoint of someone who has not ever been into metal. I do know those folks find metal disturbing, along with the art that accompanies the music. I mean…I know people that think Soulfly is brutal. Don’t get me wrong, I dig them and older Sepultura music, but it is far from brutal Death Metal. Definitely is an acquired taste that not just anyone can swallow or tolerate. I find it comforting. On the same token, I enjoy classical, some country, Motown, blues, jazz, classic rock, and funk. Just depends on what my mood is at that particular moment. My heart is in the metal, but I’m still not sure how to answer this question. You tell me. [This editor gives a resounding “Yes”]
What Texas bands are you listening to right now? Devourment has a new album out as of late, and I jam to it a lot. I dig HOD, Disfigured, Infernal Dominion, Meshiha, Viral Load, Uncleansed, and Whore of Bethlehem at the moment, as far as the Texas bands go. Great tunes while working on some art.
What does your artwork offer the Texas music scene? Hmmm…good question. Besides being hired to do art that a particular band can promote themselves with, and proud to do so, most of the bands or labels that hire me are not in Texas. So when I post the art on the Internet, it is another way for the Texas band to gain attention from outside the borders of our great state. At least I hope so. I usually post what band the art is for, along with a link to their page. Getting them more likes on Facebook or Reverbnation for example. I do support when I can. I try to give the band a run for their money; because, I do appreciate being hired to do their art. So I might throw in a back print, or sleeve print for no charge. It all depends on the situation. I know the economy is tough, and I would rather do the art, than not. It all comes full circle at some point.
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