By Rich Simmons
Day-Z is an artist I have been friends with and exhibited alongside for a long time now. With a talent that continues to amaze me and a mystery surrounding their identity, this artist has a compelling aura.
Combining techniques inspired by the masters with a modern approach, Day-Z's work excites me, draws me in and makes me ask questions. The latest plastic collection puts the spotlight on consumerism and environmental issues and shows an ability to use art as a way to raise awareness.
With incredible artistic talents, a sense of humour and the ability to raise awareness in the work, it's clear to see why Day-Z's work is so revered and respected.
Can you introduce yourself to anyone who hasn’t seen your work yet?
I guess the easiest way to put it is Hand drawn with pencil on paper.
How would you describe your art and what techniques do you use?
I’d describe my art as a combination of the old masters with a modern touch. I love to look at old paintings for inspiration but make them relevant to today.
How long has creativity been part of your life?
Ever since I can remember, my mum has also been a huge influence on me as she has always been obsessed with art and fuelled my creativity but I’d say she is my biggest fan and harshest critic all at the same time.
Did you study art or are you self taught?
I studied fine art at central saint martins.
Theres a lot of mystery about your identity. Do you enjoy the anonymity and do you find it liberating or a hinderance when creating work?
A little of both, I don’t aim to be mysterious I’m just a private person but I guess in a world when the majority of people post on social media about their everyday life I can see how it can come across as mysterious.
Do you have a favourite kind of subject matter or something that inspires and motivates you to create work?
Right now I’m very passionate about plastic and recycling and all my current work reflects that but I feel I’m constantly inspired so who knows what will inspire me or where my work will go next.
Is creativity a daily thing for you or do you get days where it can become overwhelming? If so, do you have any other creative releases that you turn to when art gets too much?
I try to be creative in some way most days, not necessarily with just drawing but it can sometimes feel a little forced, when that’s the case I tend to take a step back until I feel ready to create again.
What does the future hold for you and your work?
I've just completed a commission for Rolex so I’m looking to get back to what I’m most passionate about and right now it’s all about the plastic collection and bringing awareness.
How has lockdown changed the way you create and approach your art career?
Lockdown definitely changed the way I created, as I was abroad with very little materials and I felt passionate to create as there was so much spare time, after speaking with my brother he suggested to use the materials that I had available and to think outside my normal pencil and paper pieces, all I had was some left over paint with colours that I probably would have never used and vogue magazines and I just started throwing paint over Vogue adverts from Gucci to Louis Vuitton which was a great feeling as it was the first time in a very long time that I had not been so controlled and detailed with my work which made me really enjoy what I was creating and even more the process.
Do you have any favourite artists or creatives right now that people should check out?
Yeah definitely I have a few favourites, I love Mason Storm as I just think his work is breathtaking, Zulf is also another favourite I just love the way he creates his black and white work also Robin Coleman is incredible with his collage, I mean the list goes on.
If you could give advice to people looking to discover their creative spark or chase their artistic dreams, what would you tell them?
Start now and don’t create excuses to not create.
If you could share a studio with any artist for a day, living or dead, who would you pick?
Would have to be a dead one because there is still an opportunity to share with a living artist. It’s a great question but after a lot of thought it would probably have to be Caravaggio.