We are proud of our evolving IDNW poster graphics. From the original one taped together in a hurry, to Antonio Sanchez' hand drawn GiF to last year's send up of an Experimental Jetset classic. This year's logo is a special treat, paying homage to the great Rick Griffin. 5 Summer Stories is never really too far from our minds and it seemed like a pretty good idea. IDNW sits down and asks the artist about getting conned into helping us out. Señor Jose Fragoso...
Where did you learn to draw? What started you on this career?
I've always been drawing since I was a kid so I don´t remember a moment when I said "OK, time to make a living of this". Probably the starting point was when I finished school and studied Cartoon Animation. It was before the computer animation times, everything was drawn by hand and you had to calculate timing, movements and mood of every second of animation. It was beautiful but also very repetitive so I studied Illustration and Graphic Design and that´s when I started working as an illustrator.
How did you get roped into making a poster for a surfboard design symposium to be held in Brooklyn?
I got an email from my friend Toddy from Picture Farm with the subject "Surf Style", asking me if I would feel comfortable drawing a poster for a surfboard symposium. The subject itself just got me excited and my reply was "Yes, of course". We've been working together for more than five years and I always enjoy all the commissions he sends me, but honestly this one was the most exciting.
What did you think of the idea when it was presented to you?
I wasn't sure about what he was looking for because I am not a big expert on surf illustration. He sent me the "Five Summer Stories" poster as a reference and my first thought was "uhm... this is not what I do at all!". After many conversations, sketches and emails we saw that the best option was making an obvious homage to the poster, trying to get the feeling of Rick Griffin´s work but with my own style very present. And I think it works pretty well, I like it a lot.
The reference was pretty specific… did you know Rick Griffin’s work before?
Not really. Well, at least didn't know that it was him. I saw his work before but didn't know about him. After all the research I made for this work I have to admit that I am a big fan now!
You recently published a children’s book right? What is it about?
It´s called "La Increíblemente Alucinante Historia de Marcial, el niño normal" ("The incredibly amazing story of Marcial, the normal kid") and it´s been released in Spain in Spanish, Basque and Catalán. It tells the story of Marcial, a pretty normal kid, and his dog Trismo. His life is super normal until the day he finds out that he is fantastic, amazing and incredibly normal.
I didn't want to tell the kids a story about three little bunnies that have a birthday party in the forest. I wanted to make them think, and I hope I got it. Some reviews say that it´s a great book not only for kids but for adults, and I think that´s the best thing you can say about a children´s book. It´s coming out in the USA this year but until then you can get it on Amazon.
And, of course… have you ever surfed?
Haha! NEVER!! But I would LOVE to! Actually I spend summers in a family house in Tapia de Casariego, a small town in the north coast of Spain where one of the Surf World Cup events take place and I always think about getting some lessons... but never happened yet.