For years, Awesome Art We’ve Found Around The Net has been about two things only – awesome art and the artists that create it. With that in mind, we thought why not take the first week of the month to showcase these awesome artists even more? Welcome to “Awesome Artist We’ve Found Around The Net.” In this column, we are focusing on one artist and the awesome art that they create, whether they be amateur, up and coming, or well established. The goal is to uncover these artists so even more people become familiar with them. We ask these artists a few questions to see their origins, influences, and more. If you are an awesome artist or know someone that should be featured, feel free to contact me at any time at [email protected]. This month we are very pleased to bring you the awesome art of…
Blake Armstrong is a Los Angeles based artist and art director at BLT communications. Currently, Blake designs artwork for film, TV, music, and everything else in between. His work in music has appeared with heavy metal bands such as In Flames, Slayer, Kataklysm, Carnifex and more. His film and television artistic credits include Sonic the Hedgehog, Ready Player One, Ford V Ferrari, Stranger Things, and more.
JOBLO: What got you started as an artist?
ARMSTRONG: Art was the first thing I remember being complimented for — I was in first or second grade and drawing X-men for a friend and he told me it was really cool and wanted to keep it.
It clicked pretty early on that making pictures made people happy. By the time I got to high school, I was doing portraits for teachers for extra credit. My high school art teacher was also incredible and pushed me to embrace it as a career path. It took a few years but once I got my work in front of the right people the doors opened up.
Who were some of your favorite artists growing up?
I couldn’t put names to them at the time but movie posters had (and still have) the biggest impact on me. Drew Struzan, John Alvin, Steve Chorney — these guys were so good you didn’t even think about it — it was just some magic from the studio that somehow materialized on paper. They were able to transport you. I copied movie posters the most as a kid.
Who do you really dig these days, follow on Instagram?
Oh man, so many awesome artists out there these days — Denis Forkas Kostromitin, Tony Stella, Dave Rapoza, come to mind immediately. At the top of the heap for me I would say Paul Mann — Paul is unreal and I fanboy on his work the most these days. He’s an absolute compositional genius and a really sweet guy. His work will melt your brain.
What advice would you have for budding artists today?
Make art. Make all the art. Share it with artists you like — REACH OUT to artists you like. We have such amazing access to everyone now — I DM artists all the time and ask about their processes and tools. Take advantage of social media and get a sense of what is out there. Not seeing something you want to see? MAKE IT. See something that could be done better? DO YOUR VERSION. You can learn literally any painting/drawing technique from any artist on youtube now. That just blows my mind. No $150 books or courses. Just google it and BOOM. For you young digital poster artists out there I highly recommend Benny Productions and Phase Runner on youtube — those guys really show how contemporary digital art is created professionally.
What should we be looking out for from you in the future?
I’m currently working on the upcoming album for IN FLAMES – this will be their fourteenth record and my fifth album working with them – so I’m excited for people to see that. And I’ve always got a fan poster or two up my sleeve.
Being a fansite, we have to ask you… What are some of your favorite movies/TV shows of all time?
Favorite movies: Blade Runner, Empire Strikes Back, Evil Dead, Road House, The Burbs
Favorite Shows: Deadwood, Better Things, Euphoria, Bob’s Burgers, The Mandalorian
Scroll down to check out some of our favorite art pieces from Blake as we continue to follow his journey across his Website and social media hubs: Instagram / Twitter / Store / TeePublic
Escape From Monkey Island
In Flames: Battles
Stand By Me
Superman: The Movie