Callum Baxter Talks about his ‘Studio Ghibli’ Style Art

Callum Baxter is an artist based and rooted in Lancaster, Lancashire who works in fine line work to create snapshots into other worldly landscapes. Having created these pieces, Callum is considering creating a narrative world to accompany his work so far, keep eyes and ears out for the developments of his animated series in future.

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Any viewer will take something entirely different from a piece or series of art, I found myself recalling Studio Ghibli, and falling back into narratives such as Philip Pullman’s subtle knife when first looking at Callum’s work. Here he speaks to Diss about his work as an artist.

How did you first become more involved in art and creating your pieces?
I first began drawing when I was very young, doodling in class all the way up until I left high school. This is where my style of working has evolved from, developing over time into the landscape drawing I do now.

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What materials do you use or what mediums do you work through when creating your art. They feel like alien worlds to step into!
I use fineline pens and either card or basic cartridge paper to draw on to. This is mostly because this is what I would have access to in the classroom environment and so, naturally, this is what I became good at using. I agree that they feel like they’re a part of some larger world but, unfortunately, I haven’t developed any narrative to accompany my drawings. However, in the future, I might consider linking them together with some sort of story. I just haven’t gotten around to it yet.

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Is there a collective name for this body of work which you have dubbed it with?
Currently I don’t have a name for my collection of work, they’re just my drawings really. Again, in the future I would like to add some background information to my drawings and a title for people to refer to, but I haven’t done so… yet. I suppose I’m more focused on drawing the pictures than creating a story behind them at the moment.

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What would you say are the inspirations behind this body of work? – do you draw influence from the everyday, or would you say sources are more abstract?
I do use some things as inspiration. I might copy the occasional pattern/ shape I see in architecture or in nature and use it somewhere in a drawing. But, for the most part, I make it all up as I go along. I never know what one of my drawings will look like when I’m finished (or when I start).

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How long approximately do you spend on a piece of art?
It depends on the size of paper I’m working on. I suppose, on average, it would take me around 4 hours to complete a drawing on A4, but around 7 for one on A3 paper.

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Do you have any rituals of creation that help you to get the creative juices flowing, as it were?
Not really, I make up my drawings as I go along. I just grab some paper and a pen and start drawing when I feel like it. I usually listen to music as I draw though, I find this usually helps when concentrating on drawing.

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Please can you tell us more about any other collections or bodies of work you are creating?
At the moment I am solely working on developing this style of drawing, I’m not very interested in any other mediums at the moment. But, maybe in the future I will try something new.

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Are there any styles of animation, movements or individual artists you are inspired by or have close bonds with who you would recommend people to seek out?                                                                                                                                                                             I guess my source of inspiration is broadly game art, I played a lot of online Flash games as a kid (mostly because they were free and my computer was rubbish!) and they would usually have a stylised but detailed background. These backgrounds would often include buildings and landscapes that led you to believe that there was a whole world waiting to be explored in which this game took place. I used to wish I could draw things like that and have people believe that I had this huge world created for people to explore and read about. In the end I got what i wanted, I just haven’t written any background to this world as of yet, but it’s something I would like to do in the future. Also vector art, I really like the look of simplistic vector art.

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I’m on Facebook and I have a website that was recently published. My website has my collection of my work on and a monthly blog where I’ll be posting updates about my on-going projects, so I’d recommend checking that out every now and again for updates.

Interview by Hannah Dixon

Instagram ( @cbaxter_)

www.instagram.com/cbaxter_

Website

http://www.callumbaxterart.co.uk/

Facebook

(www.facebook.com/CallumBaxterArt)

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