CM: How did you get your start as a professional artist?
KS: I attended Pratt Institute and graduated in 2010. At the end of my senior year my work was seen by an Art Director at Sterling Publishing, who showed my work to an editor he works with. We ended up working on the Signature Shakespeare series of books, which was definitely a big break for me!
CM: What are your favorite mediums to use?
KS: Two years ago I would have said cut-paper, and only paper. But I’m at a point where I’m trying to juggle a few styles, depending on what I want to accomplish. My traditional work is typically cut-paper and/or acrylic, although my drawings are done in ink. Digitally, I work in a sort of chalky Photoshop style or a very smooth vector style, although sometimes I blend them.
CM: How did you get the idea/inspiration for your Syndrome pieces?
KS: I’d started a small series of ink drawings with birds and flowers last year, and kept delving into research about pollinators. The title of the show refers to Pollination Syndromes – a groups of flowers preferred by specific types of pollinators.
CM: What is the most exciting part of your first solo show?
KS: Having one in the first place, and feeling like now that it’s finished I can delve deeper for the next one!
CM: You also paint landscapes and much of your art centers around birds and flowers, what is the draw of nature to you?
KS: I’ve always been nature-obsessed. As a kid some of my favorite books were about minerals and flowers and animals, and even the stories I liked to read, like Grimm’s fairy tales and The Secret Garden, had an emphasis on nature. I used to wander around outside with my dog and pretend I had little gardens all over the neighborhood. So to bring a focus on that in my artwork feels very natural to me!
CM: What project(s) are you working on now?
KS: Oh gosh. Here is some of my list:
Pair of landscape prints for Gallery Nucleus based on a series of drawings I’ve been working on (http://ruckenfigures.tumblr.com/).
Series of semi-daily drawings based on made-up video game items I’m calling “Artifacts” (http://kevinjaystanton.tumblr.com/search/artifacts).
Three laser-cut posters for Black Dragon Press with a Shakespeare theme (http://blackdragonpress.co.uk/).
Co-curating One Thousand and One Knights with Annie Stoll. It’s a giant anthology split into a boxed set of three books, filled with 1,001 examples of original knights, with an emphasis on people-positive, feminist characters. We have more than 200 amazing artists and writers contributing to it! (onethousandandoneknights.com)
Co-curating Burl and Fur with Paul Reinwand, Ricardo Bessa, and Irene Koh, which is a zine inspired by bara manga and pin-ups. The artists involved are all seriously heavy-hitters of the industry. (http://burlandfur.tumblr.com/contributors)
Pitching an original comic to Boom!
Monthly bird painting for Every Day Original (http://www.everydayoriginal.com/artistprofile/?artist=kevinstanton).
And there are a few poster projects I’m working on at the moment that I’m excited about!
CM: What would be your dream project?
KS: In a lot of ways, the Signature Shakespeare project was my dream project – so more of that would be amazing! Having another solo show in NYC would be a dream come true as well!
CM: What advice do you have for aspiring artists?
KS: Work hard and don’t stall. And take chances when they feel right.
Check out some more artwork by Kevin!