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Steve Carroll is a freelance graphic designer and a teacher of Art and Art History to adults at local colleges. His favourite saying when talking about his artistic career is the word of advice John Lennon gave to his son, Sean: “Life is what happens to you when you’re busy making other plans.”
“When I look at the work of artists like Titian and Rembrandt, how can I compete with that? I have to create something completely different that will not be compared with the great art of the past.”
Steve trained in graphic design and illustration at Berkshire College of Art and Design, graduating in 1982 in a pre-digital age when designers had to be able to draw. And one thing Steve is always doing is drawing. He is the co-ordinator of ‘Sussex Sketchcrawlers’, which organises drawing days around Sussex towns. (Find them on Facebook). His digital prints are a fusion of on-the-spot drawing and design. They have a fresh ‘as it comes’ look, together with a strong sense of colour and design.
Most of Steve’s images are drawn with Indian ink on old-fashioned Bristol Board, then scanned into the Mac and coloured in Photoshop. They have the appearance of screen prints, an application he has explored and would like to develop. However, he likes that fact that running out his work as digital prints makes it affordable to everyone.
Steve moved with his family to Sussex in 1998 to work at a design and print company. He was made redundant in 2001, but was adamant about staying in the area because of its beauty. He did absolutely anything to support his family, including writing a series of graphic novels called ‘Riddler’s Fayre’, set at the time of the Crusades as a comment on George W. Bush’s ‘War on Terror’.
His exposure to the graphic novel industry was one of the greatest revelations of Steve’s life. He realised that it was limitless in subject matter and so varied in style. He thinks of his images as ‘Frames from comics that haven’t been written’.
On his website you will find Steve’s collection of Sussex images, alongside images of Calcutta! Steve was in India in February 2013 teaching art to children in slum schools, where he saw beautiful little girls being groomed for prostitution because it was the only thing they could do to earn money. Steve wants to go back and teach these children, giving them a trade will rescue them from such a terrible life. All profits from sales of his India pictures will go to the work of educating such children.
© 2016 Kemp Street Productions
Part of Brighton's Arty Family