Can you introduce yourself for those who may not have come across your designs?
I'm James, an artist and printmaker, based in Sheffield, South Yorkshire. I specialise in linocut prints and screenprints, and my subjects range from landscapes to UK wildlife to surreal and abstract compositions.
We're a big fan of your art. How did you get into linocuts and screen-printing?
Thanks! I studied art at university, and it was always something I had a big passion for, for as long as I can remember. However, I didn't get into printmaking until after university. I borrowed some basic lino tools and started to get into making prints, just for myself and making the odd greeting card. This swiftly became an obsession and sixteen years on I'm still as keen on printmaking. I learn about screen-printing a little later on, when I was looking into making bigger prints and experimenting with colours and transparencies. I've always loved the boldness of printmaking, from cool band t-shirts to large-scale artworks.
Your art is often based around your home city of Sheffield. What influence has the city had on your creativity?
Well, for a start, the seven hills help! There are great urban and suburban views everywhere. So this is what first caught my attention. I love the mix of architecture, the brutal, rural, industrial and suburban all mixed together in some strange puzzle. I'm not from Sheffield, but moved here in 1992, and have always been fascinated by the place. It is quite a humble city, but has so much hidden treasure and so many talented people living here.
Have you always been into fashion? Any early references/influences to where you grew up?
I guess I have, but maybe not always in an overt way. I vividly remember buying my first 'fashionable' shirt from Fosters in about 1984 (probably a grey and pink shiny one), and then realising that clothes could make you feel different. For most of my teenage years I was a bit of a goth, so not exactly fashionable, but I was very aware of my 'look'.
How did you first come across Admiral Sporting Goods Co.?
I remember Admiral in the early 1980s, being an enthusiastic football fan. I loved sporting fashion back then, especially the strips, boots and trainers, and spent a lot of time drawing them.
What do you like most about the ASGco. pieces you've picked up? Anything you’re looking to get pick-up soon?
These days I really just like simple, well-made classic clothing (and a little retro), and these definitely fit the bill. I'm certainly not one for fast fashion, and the Admiral sweatshirt/jumper seem like they are built to last. I do like interesting colours too (not a beige fan), and you seem to have a nice range.
What are you following on Instagram at the moment? Do you have any favourite artists?
Currently quite a few other printmakers (surprisingly); James Bywood, Rhi Moxon, Marko, Clare Cutts, oh and painter Melvyn Evans too. My favourite artists are probably David Hockney and Barbara Hepworth. I find them both hugely inspiring.
When you’re not making amazing prints, what other things do you get up to?
I'm a big fan of ceramics, and I've just signed up for a six-week course making pots, so I'm very excited about that. I'm also a musician, and have been for over 20 years. I have two bands, experimental pop group 'Big Eyes Family' and retro instrumental surf trio 'Surf Muscle', and I also sometimes work solo and collaborate with other musicians. A couple of years ago my print and music world collided when I created and released a musical soundtrack LP to a series of prints I made featuring donkeys (entitled 'Donkey Jukebox'). A niche idea, I know.