Our Artisan Project - Colin Rivers
Interview by Luke Mitchell
Who better to kick the project off with than our very own in house creative Colin Rivers. If you want a lesson on street art/culture, 90’s rap or apparently, squidding from a kayak. He’s your guy. All round legend, a must at any party, but more to the point a deep soul who’s art reflects the thought put into his projects.
Tell us about your story as an artist?
For as long as i can remember, I have always loved cartoons and still do haha. I would spend hours copying all the Looney Tunes Tazos around the time Space Jam came out, yep I am officially old. My dad gave me a disposable camera around that time, I still remember how exciting that was. Shortly after my step brother introduced me to skateboarding and that was it for me. My first deck was a Birdhouse, Rick Mccrank with this crazy monster as the graphic. I loved that board so much! I remember taking it to school with no trucks or grip tape and putting it under my desk just to have my feet on it all day.
Then, through skateboarding came graffiti. Which for a creative kid is probably the best (or worst) hobby ever! You need to constantly get better, it's like a big competition. It teaches you a lot about motivation. There is so much to it, drawing, painting, taking photos and going on adventures (also vandalising things which is good for teenage angst, but also illegal. So, not so good).
In graffiti, the photography aspect is nearly as important as the painting itself. We used to umm, ‘acquire’ disposable cameras from Bi-Lo which had free developing, that was a good hustle. My Dad was into photography too, and he used to give me paint from work. He knew what I was up to and was always supportive. Thanks Dad! The painting slowed down as I got older and I started focusing more on snowboarding. I kept on taking photos and painting less and less. I also started doing some graphic design (which is what I do now) while I was at Uni and it's all kind of evolved from there.
Osaka Station, Osaka, 2020.
Myoko Terminal, Myoko, 2020.
How would you describe your art or yourself as an artist?
I shoot documentary/street style with an Australiana feel. I predominantly use film (which is what I studied when I was younger). I like the unpredictability and rawness of shooting film. I am trying more and more to blur the lines between my design and my photography to create something fresh that wouldn't be achieved without having one or the other.
What is the message or feeling of this piece?
I wanted it to feel like you were stepping inside of a time machine when you look at it… the feeling the early explorers of snow and surf had when they arrived at a spot that had barely been ridden yet. It's hard to tell that the photo was taken in February of this year.
What is the inspiration behind this piece?
As an Aussie snowboarder, it's almost a right of passage to chase the Jaypow. It was my first trip over and it was one of the worst seasons to date. I took a roll of high ISO film, which ended up getting damaged by all the x-ray machines during transit, making it horribly grainier than it should be. I took that photo of the mountains as I was leaving Hakuba on my way to Myoko. It had been 3 weeks and it had snowed like 10cm, pretty grim haha. When I got the roll of film back it was a little disappointing, but there was something about that mountain shot that I really liked. I think it was because it looked like it came from a different time, not 2020. I paired this with some retro design with a bit of a modern twist and bam here we are.
What organisation did you choose to donate to and why?
I chose to donate to Trees For Life, they are a South Australian NGO that does some great stuff around my area. There is a lot of revegetation work that needs doing due to land clearing here in SA and I think they need all the help they can get! TFL run some pretty cool seedling initiatives for people looking to revegetate land they own, or you can help raise seedlings to be planted in your area. If you want to get involved in some way, hit the link, I'm sure they will appreciate an extra hand :)
Hakuba Bus Terminal, Hakuba, 2020.
Soapbox moment. Is there anything you want to give thanks for, call out or start a conversation about?
I know it's been a tough year for everyone, make sure you check in with your mates. A phone call costs pretty much nothing but your time and it could mean the world to the person on the other end.
Much love to all my friends and fam, always keeping me inspired! It's been a wild ride so far and I couldn't have done it without you.
A massive thanks to Yuki for giving me the opportunity and continuing to push the limits of what can be done in the industry.
I can't wait to see what the other artists come up with!
Where can we check out more of your art?
On your local train line haha, jks.
My Insta is: @spike__chilligan
'I wanted it to feel like you were stepping inside of a time machine when you look at it… the feeling the early explorers of snow and surf had when they arrived at a spot that had barely been ridden yet. It's hard to tell that the photo was taken in February of this year.'
- Colin Rivers -
Hostel Window, Myoko, 2020.
Mumma, Myoko, 2020.