Craig Robson is a graphic designer and illustrator currently living in Liverpool, England. He produces hand drawn illustrations that are increasingly black and increasingly bold. Craig also makes small runs of specialised products for Daggers For Teeth, which he owns and runs. We had a quick chat with Craig about his work, and he incredible piece that he designed for us Incantation Tapestry, which was designed exclusively for our screen print series: Paradise.
Q: Hi Craig, how are you doing today?
A: Great thank you! The sun is shining for once!
Q: Thank you so much for creating one of the coolest pieces ever for our Paradise series, we’re so excited to have you on board!
A: That’s really nice of you to say, it was really humbling to be asked to contribute to a series that is jam packed with brilliant artists whom I respect.
Q: Tell is a bit about how you started off in the industry? Did you study?
A: I studied graphic design & illustration at John Moores University in Liverpool. I graduated in 2010 with a first class degree in illustration; the pathways changed a little way throughout the course so the “graphic arts” tag was dropped. It was a really great three years and I wouldn’t change anything, despite the debt!
Q: You seem to have a huge following for your limited and incredibly beautiful patches, what is it like to be at the forefront of patch needs!?
A: It’s incredibly strange! I started making patches at the end of university (so five years ago now), and mainly made them because I wanted some for myself o be honest – I’ve always had a mantra that I wouldn’t make anything for Daggers For Teeth that I wouldn’t use or wear myself. Its kind of mind blowing that the patches I make sell out so quickly. There’s so many people making them now that it makes me really appreciate the people that choose to nab something from me rather than other stores – I don’t want to flood an already saturated market with more junk than it can take, so I try to stagger releasing new designs in order to make sure the ones I make are THE ones I want to make.
Q: Is designing for patches a different process? Do you have to approach it in a different way from screen prints?
A: yeah definitely, thicker is better in all aspects of the design, you are going to have to put this thing through a machine that lays down thread before you get your patch, that means that it has limitations. Just like screen-printing you have to keep the process in mind when you are designing it. I’ve made a few patches where I’ve pushed what I think the limits are just to learn what I can, or cant get away with.
Q: Tell us a bit about some of your favourite projects you have worked on?
A: I’ve made a LOT of t-shirt designs over the past few years, and I still find the medium really fun to work with, aside from regular merchandise designs I’ve made a few skateboard designs that I really had fun working on, a few posters that were dream jobs for me and a bunch of custom hats there were fun too. Recently I’ve been working with UK custom plugs on a range of products and design work, much of which has to pass through a laser engraver at some point, which has been really interesting to explore.
Q: What or whom do you find are your creative influences?
A: like everyone I tend to get influenced by everything that comes my way, but id say mostly traditional tattooing, screen-printing and hard-core/metal/punk subcultures are probably the biggest influences. Mix those up with some woodcut aesthetics and a love of visual tricks and you start to see how I ended up drawing how I do. In terms of artists there’s probably too many to mention, I’ve been really enjoying the work of Mike Egan recently, Phillip Yarnel, Shane swift, Rocket Society, Brian Ewing, Charles burns, Alex Bage, the guys at Blast Skates, McBess, aaaah I could go on forever!!
Q: Tell us about the piece you did for Skull & Heart.
A: incantation tapestry was made as part of a series of designs based on Masonic tapestries and medieval hangings. It tells a story of a plague that takes over England and the attempts to enchant the sickness into submission. It’s an image of the memory of this event, a reminder of the plague, and a reminder of the cure.
Q: Can you tell us about any future projects in the works?
A: as usual its more patches, more t-shirts, more fun weird little objects and new merch ideas.
Q: And of course, Skulls or Hearts?
A: Skulls. Forever.
You can visit Craig on his website here
All available artwork from Daggers For Teeth is available to purchase in our online store. Please click the images below to be directed to the item you are interested in.