Justin, a.k.a scaryjesus, is an extremely talented artist that we have discovered just recently and thought that he definitely deserves more attention. He uses Photoshop to create images that will give one chills down the spine, turning regular photos in the kind of art that you simply can’t stop looking at, searching for details or even imperfects. But there aren’t any, the results are absolutely breathtaking. Justin has honored us with a short interview in which he reveals part of his personality and artistic secrets.
Q: How old are you Justin and where does this talent live?
A: I’m 29 and I live in Vancouver B.C, Canada. I moved across the country about a year ago from a small province called Newfoundland.
Q: When did you discover your passion and talent for Photoshop and art? How did all this start?
A: I’ve always been a creative person. I’ve sketched, drawn and doodled all my life. But as much as I loved drawing, I was very rarely satisfied with the end result a pencil and paper could bring. Somehow, I just couldn’t recreate on paper the things I saw in my head.
I first got introduced to Photoshop when I took MultiMedia: Digital Animation in college in 2000, and instantly fell in love. Although I didn’t actually start making artwork with it until some time later.
Of course, when I chose to use Photoshop as the medium to create, I really didn’t know how to use it.
I knew basics like opening a file, making it black and white, adding text and things like that. So I researched, practiced and read tons of tutorials. Even today I still look up new techniques and tutorials to try. Using Photoshop I found I could accurately create and invent the things I saw in my head. The things I wanted to invent. The things I continue to need to create. Fast forward about ten years, and here I am. Now I’m doing album artwork for bands, making magazine covers and creating logos for businesses among other things.
Q: Can you tell us what inspires you when creating your artwork?
A: My inspiration comes from a lot of different things. Mainly life events, and things that happen to me or around me. Feelings, emotions and reactions; that’s pretty much the base on which my ideas are built on. I don’t generally sit there and think “Woah, it’d be cool to make that!”. Everything comes from something.
Q: Do you use other editing software besides Photoshop?
A: Actually no. Everything I make is done entirely in Photoshop. It’s the program I’m most familiar with I guess. I’ve been using it for ten years.
Q: Are there any famous artists whom you admire or who influenced your work?
A: Absolutely. I’ve been a huge fan of Chad Michael Ward for years. I actually own four of his books, one of which is autographed. The guy has his finger on the pulse of what he does, and I admire him for that.
I also have huge respect and admiration for Paul Booth. His dark artwork and tattooing skills just stupify me. I actually met Paul a few years back. He’s a very nice guy.
Russell Mills is another artist that amazes me. His technique is astounding. When I bought Nine Inch Nails’ album “The Downward Spiral”, I studied his artwork in that booklet. I’ve never seen or heard of anyone else using animal skeletons, teeth and decay so effectively as Russell Mills.
Q: You have created your unique style, with these macabre works. Do you plan on continuing in the same direction?
A: I think what I do is a reflection of how I perceive the world, so you can defintiely expect more work like what I’ve been doing all along. It’s where my heart and mind live. That said, I do like to experiment with different techniques, and I try to branch out with my ideas. It’s always good to broaden your horizon.
Q: We figure that you are one busy guy, but still what is it that you like doing when you have a bit of spare time?
A: Yeah, there’s rarely a day I don’t open Photoshop. Besides doing my personal artwork I’m always restoring, fixing up and editing images for friends and family. But when I’m not photoshopping I’m usually found outside jogging. That, or killing zombies in Left for Dead, I love that game. More recently I went to an indoor shooting range and shot a bunch of guns. 9mm’s, shotguns, .44 Magnums and Desert Eagles. This may be my new favorite hobby, heh.
Q: What advice would you give to an artist just starting out?
A: Haha, am I really at the point where I get to be asked that? I guess first thing would be practice. Just don’t stop. Read every tutorial you can. Learn how to use the program and it’s tools. Only then can you apply what you’ve learned to accurately create the things you want in a satisfying way.
Also, try new things for the hell of it. I find when I try something radically different, I usually learn a little something I can apply to what I normally do. You never know when you can gain something that will enhance your work dramatically.