Introduce us to you and your brand! I’m an award winning visual artist and print maker who has enjoyed success both as a painter and as a cartoonist (pen name NAF). My cartoon work has been published in hundreds of publications including Playboy and the much coveted New Yorker magazine and my greeting card range received a ‘Henry Award’ in 2014.
As a painter, I work with acrylics on canvas. Using bold, vivid colours and referencing popular icons from the 1970’s and 80’s, my collection of ‘geek art’ paintings entitled 'Scot Wars' have been very well received both in the UK and abroad. My work can be found on display in contemporary Galleries in Edinburgh and Glasgow.
,,"My cartoon work has been published in hundreds of publications including Playboy and the much coveted New Yorker magazine"
How has your brand developed since you began? It started with painting some Star Wars figures I had found from my childhood. It was from this that planted the seed of 'Scot Wars' – reimagining the Star Wars world with a Scottish twist. I am going to be introducing the 'McHeroes' range also soon which takes icons such as Mr. T and Tony Soprano and applies the same treatment.
How did you find out about SDX? And what made you apply to sell with us? I found out about SDX through Bare Branding, the printers I use in Leith . I applied as soon as I could as I loved the philosophy and the ethos behind SDX. They truly support the independent artist and do not work on many gallery principles of charging large amounts of commission.
,,"I loved the philosophy and the ethos behind SDX. They truly support the independent artist and do not work on many gallery principles of charging large amounts of commission."
What would you consider to be the most challenging aspect about working as an artist? At the moment, it is lack of space! Studio rental in Edinburgh is expensive and very hard to find. At the moment I have a make shift ‘area’ in my bedroom that has been very cosy to say the least!
What do you consider to be your most popular product? By far it is 'The Bairn', otherwise known as Baby Yoda, The Child or Grogu – It has been suggested I should do 'The Wean' for Glasgow fans! I am considering this...
What piece are you the proudest of? I am proudest of my ‘The Dark Yin’ painting depicting Darth Vader in Billy Connolly’s iconic banana boots. I was really satisfied with the final product.
Do you have any past accomplishments you wish to share? I am also a banjo player who plays in bands (well, used to before covid but hope to again soon).
What have you found to be the most challenging aspect to your business since the beginning of the pandemic in 2020? In general, the lack of retail outlets being open and having the opportunity to make a few real time sales.
How have you spent your time during lockdowns? Painting and more painting and trips to the seaside and mountains (when allowed).
Have you discovered any new hobbies or passions in the last year? Producing prints for SDX
How do you think shopping and retail may change after the pandemic ends? I think there will always be a demand for the high street and retail. We have spent so much time buying online I think people will want an experience rather than just a purchase.
How did SDX being closed affect your business? It meant loss of money – but I also missed my regular trips to the shop in Glasgow to restock. The staff are quality!!!
What do you hope to gain from working with SDX going forward?Ongoing experience of producing and selling art. It is a rare thing to have an organisation like SDX which allows the artist to take full control of their pitch!
,"I also missed my regular trips to the shop in Glasgow to restock. The staff are quality!!!"
If you could share just one piece of advice to aspiring artists/designers who want to make a living from their creative talents, what would you tell them? Produce something that you enjoy – chose a subject matter that you love then you’ll never be board.
Tell us your favourite inspirational quote!
,,'Gardez votre sourire d'enfant, fuyez la tristesse des adultes'
('Keep your childish smile and run from the sadness of the adults') - George Bernanos