Sullen Artist, Shop Owner & Traditional Style Tattooer Jacob Doney (@JacobDoneyTattoo) has been on fire these past few years. With the opening of his new shop Envision Tattoo in Grand Terrace, CA. and his TWO (that’s right two) current designs with Sullen Clothing... this dude has been BUSY. None-the-less we got lucky enough to convince Jacob to answer some questions about his two designs for our Summer 2015 Collection, ‘Left Coast‘ & ‘Anchors Away‘ (currently available at SullenClothing.Com/Store).
Sullen: Where did inspiration come from for your new designs ‘Anchors Away‘ & ‘Left Coast‘?
Jacob: Both of these designs were originally influenced by tattoos. Both Nautical & California theme tattoos are very popular. I figured it would make sense to draw a popularly requested design to go on a shirt. Since Sullen is California based it also made sense to use a bear. Skulls are often seen in tattoos so I incorporated that into an anchor design, and you can never go wrong with adding a few roses- just like with tattooing.
Sullen: What about these designs are you most proud of?
Jacob: My favorite aspects of both pieces is the fact that I feel they showcase the type of art I like to draw and tattoo the most. Since Sullen is sold all over and showcases our artwork, it helps us (as artists) share the styles we enjoy most with a lot of the world. For a tattooer like myself, I know that when people see my shirt designs they’ll get a feel for what I like to tattoo. I think most Artists who create for Sullen are grateful to do art for the company because Sullen helps get our art out there. They get us exposure that we might not have been able to get on our own.
Sullen: What did you struggle with most when creating these designs?
Jacob: Figuring out a good layout is always the hardest part. Second, trying to make the piece look complete and visually appealing without making the tee look cluttered. Once the concept is complete I try to decide on what medium will work best for the piece. I try to change it up as well so not going the same thing over and over is tricky.
Sullen: Tell us a little about your experience working with Sullen Clothing & The Sullen Art Collective
Jacob: Before I did my first design for Sullen I knew that they had incredible and well known artists producing art for them… So my initial thought was, “Why do they want work from me?” I was too excited to overthink it so I said yes and started drawing right away. The idea of having my art next to people I respected as an artist was an exciting thing. Anytime I would go to Sullen HQ everyone was always friendly and I always felt welcomed. There never seemed to be any different treatment based on status. Another cool thing is that there is such a good variety of art types coming out of Sullen. Even when some of my submissions weren’t used, I respected that Ryan (Smith, Co-Owner & Creative Director at Sullen) was straight forward and honest when it came to approving my art. His approach helped me to improve in areas I was lacking when it came to designing art for a shirt. I feel like the reason the quality of art is always top notch is because of his vision and knowing what art works for clothing and what doesn’t. For that I’m grateful to have been given the opportunity to continue to make art for the company.
Sullen: What are you looking forward to most in 2015?
Jacob: I’m looking forward to making my business grow and progressing with my art and tattooing. The competition in this industry is only getting better which means I need to work harder then the next guy. Tattooing never gets old for me because of my passion to draw, so I hope that never changes. I hope to make more designs for Sullen and hope to see progression in my future designs compared to my old ones. The more Sullen grows, the better a chance I have at getting to produce more designs and gain more exposure as a tattooer. I hope to continue to gain exposure for my works throughout the world. Overall I’m just excited to keep making art and looking forward to any new doors that may open up for me.
Thank you Jacob for recognizing what Sullen Clothing has and always will provide for the Tattoo Community, for your kind words about Co-Owner Ryan Smith (@ColorCrimes), & for dedicating your time to produce two awesome designs for our Summer 2015 Collection.
‘Left Coast‘ or ‘Anchors Away‘ visit
SullenClothing.Com or a Sullen Retailer near you.
Retailers carrying ‘Left Coast‘ &/or ‘Anchors Away‘ include:
Black Flys (Australia) http://www.blackflys.com.au/
Red Lion (Columbia)
Nk Supplies (Greece) http://www.e-tattoo.gr/
Perfect Image (Canada) http://www.perfectimage.ca/
(please call shop for product availability)