Louie Dodd has been quietly ripping for many moons now, his humble approach to skateboarding is a breath of fresh air in the attention seeking world we live in. Lou’s productivity is on another level, on and off the board. He has consistently been dropping parts full of raw street skating but behind the scenes he’s also quite handy with a VX, is a partner in UNO Limited and is a graphic designer. We sat down with Lou to have a chat regarding his latest work, the “4 Eyes” graphic.
When did you first become interested in graphic design? What initially sparked your interest in it?
Probably not until halfway through high school when we were prompted with what we were going to do as a career, pretty much the only subject I had any interest in was art but the idea of becoming an artist seemed kind of unrealistic. I wasn’t technically good at drawing and where I grew up, making a career out of art was practically unheard of. Graphic design then became my second best option and wanted to incorporate as much art into it as possible. I think skateboarding attracted me too graphic design initially, picking out a new board was always exciting and I always made a conscious decision to go with the “best” graphic in my eyes, most times if money was a constraint I’d end up with a horrible graphic and it would bum me out every time I skated.
What have you studied to get to a level where you can design graphics?
I did a degree in Communication Design, which essentially translates to graphic design with a bit of marketing mixed in. However this didn’t enable me to design graphics, these days anyone can design graphics if they put the time in to learn the programs. I think the big separation is between those who have developed a style and aesthetic and those who merely just copy others or create works with no substance.
What is the favourite graphic/piece you have designed
Probably the most current one, the “Four Eyes” board. I find that the older the piece the more critically I view it, generally the less amount of time I have to deliberate over it’s flaws the more I will like it. I think this is a common trait amongst artists/designers though, it’s natural to strive for better each time. I was happy with the outcome of this one though, throughout the process I really wanted to keep the design simple so that (in my eyes) it would skate well, I love skating minimal graphics as they date so well. Scratches look good, you don’t lose the initial aesthetic of the graphic entirely, and it allows room for sticker jobs. These are all boxes I like to tick when looking for boards so when designing this one I looked at it in the same way.
What do you consider to be your major influences?
Friends who are doing creative things, whether it be music, art or design, these are the main people who get me motivated and influence my work. Otherwise I like to gain inspiration from older graphics finding them in packaging, old publications, or in strange places on the internet. The older the work the more originality I see in them, which is something that is really inspiring to myself. Originality seems to be increasingly rare these days with the uprise of social media and by no means do I think I’m exempt from that, but it is motivating to see an incredible piece of imagery that you have never thought to use/create.
Traditionally do you have any favourite skateboard graphics? Any particular reason why?
Not in particular. That’s quite a hard question to answer as my favourite period of skateboard design, the early to late 1990’s I wasn’t around for, well… not skating anyway. There are a lot of inspiring graphics from this time period from various brands like World, H Street, 101, Stereo, Workshop, but no singular graphic do I have that is a favourite.
What does you creative process entail?
Usually doodling at my desk or re visiting old drawings or images of designs that I have collected and picking out the things I like. I don’t like to set too much of a strict process as that reminds me of school too much, I always disliked that they taught you this mechanical way of working… starting with research, planning, sketches, roughs and then final product. Not to mention getting scored on your folio or back up work. Sometimes for myself it’s as simple as an idea and a sketch.
What are you filming for ATM?
I’m filming for Jamish’s new video for UNO, the name is yet to be announced but I am super excited for it. I think we can expect it at the start of October, it’s going to consist of all the UNO boys, a similar line up to his last video. I really think everyone has progressed a lot since then and it’s gonna be a banger. We’ve been trying to stay away from the main “spots” in Melbourne and shine some light on all the stuff that gets slept on.
Any travel plans coming up?
I’m going to be away in the U.S and U.K over christmas time, a little skating but mainly a trip to visit family and hang out with my girl, can’t wait!
Whats been happening with lately with UNO?
We’re working on a couple new projects yet to be announced, sort of moving slowly as Jamish has been busy with Uni and Ben is overseas. But we can guarantee some new stuff soon, got some exciting plans!
For now lets re-visit Louie’s intro clip!This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged Louie Dodd. Bookmark the permalink. ← Harry Clark Dimanche →