Well I'm proud to Introduce well there's no need but I will Martin Trafford of Traffart English Born Australian killing it in the doodle stakes like Tony Hart on crack .....
Matt : Well you clearly are a artist genius , you wasn't born with it guide me through your journey that got you where you are today (in Australia I may add) ...
Martin: Firstly thanks so much for calling me an artist genius?! I think my only genius is in understanding that I'm merely adequate as an artist.. I know I'm not genius by any stretch.. I spent years knocking on the doors of companies only to discover they had forty other people on their books who can do what I can do but better!.. As in any creative field though it really is a case of not what you know but who.. It's sad but true!.. I was a freelance illustrator straight out of art college, that soon beat it out of me!. But I've been in love with art.. And horror since I was a child, I was a grim kid and luckily I managed to cling to that and carry it through to adulthood. I studied art n Doncaster and then in Middlesbrough under Dudley Edwards of Psychedelic art collective Edwards, Binder and Vaughan( they painted John Lennon's Rolls Royce and Paul McCartney's piano amongst other things!)
When I found I wasn't making stacks of cash as an illustrator( you can't choose your jobs either! Unless you actually ARE some kind of genius.. Even the best of them have had to draw hoovers and washing machines to make a buck!) I fell into optometry as a way to pay the bills.. That job after a lot of hard graft got me to Australia!
Matt : Seems like the artistic ways have rubbed off onto your son, I can only imagine you were in tears upon discovering his talents ?
Martin: Yes I couldn't be prouder of my son .. Of all three really! But my eldest Stephen has always had a creative streak.. Must be hereditary to some degree??
We used to draw together slot growing up.. I had him when I was still at art college so he was born into a creative atmosphere and he's always been a natural with a pen.. He's now qualified as a games designer and is looking into getting work in that field! I'm old school.. He's new for sure
Matt: What can be said, most people have a piece of your artwork on various covers/comics etc. and even prints, and your new artwork page is coming along nicely, how has the snowball effect been like over the past few years ?
Martin: I'd say it's been less a snowball effect and more a snow shovel effect to be honest! I started my art career off like twenty years ago now.. I've constantly been creating and getting knocked back.. You have to be tenacious and most of all create for the love of it! If I wanted to make s living from it then I'd have given up as a failure many moons ago. Anyone with creative blood be it artist or filmmaker have a deep rooted NEED to do it, that's what keeps you going.. Keeps some of us SANE?!!
My first job in the underground horror scene was with Jorg Buttgereit while I was still in Art college. I was ( and still am) a huge fan of his work and through bothering him with my artwork landed a job producing a few pin ups of his Nekromantik movies, then during this time he was working on Schramm and he asked me to produce the official t shirt design and a " making of " VHS sleeve for it. Over the years we have kept in contact I've recently been helping with setting up his Captain Berlin comic books( issue 1 is now on its third reprint which is huge for a German comic book??). There may be another collaboration with Jorg in the pipeline right now but I couldn't say at this early stage!.. Since I moved to Australia I've gotten back into the underground scene and have been lucky enough to create pieces for Scott Schirmer and Arthur Culliper based on Found and Headless.. I've done some art for Ron Decaro, Guy Pearce ( via Lostwitch! Or Adrian as you know him!) I'm helping out here and there with Bloody Banter and Caps Collective.. Have a few pots on the boil with upcoming Arrow Video projects( I recently helped with work on the excellent " society" release!) and am happy.. VERY happy to be involved with a new project which should please ALOT of underground horror lovers with Parker Richardson, Joey Caps, the amazing Phil Stevens and awesome Justin Vonhellmouth!... Watch this space!!
Matt: What have been your most challenging work to the point that you wanted to give up?
Martin: The most challenging work is work I have no interest in to be honest.. If your hearts not in it it's an uphill struggle all the way. Whereas if I have s passion for the subject matter I'm all over it like a fine moss!
There's usually more apprehension than anything else when producing art based on a beloved movie.. I'm constantly aware that I can't let down the filmmaker or the fans.. And I'd be letting myself down!
Matt : Would you like to share some of you work that you extremely proud of ?
Martin: have to say that loving what I'm doing recently and believe me.. There's no money in it!.. I do this mainly for the love of the underground, for the love of horror! I'm pretty proud of most of the stuff I've been doing lately.. I'm proud because of the amazing love and support I've had from the filmmakers and fans!.. There's no one like us! We are all so passionate about what we create and consume in the underground horror movement.. There's a real sense of ownership and pride and support from everyone involved. I'm really proud of the found and headless pin ups I did.. If I had to choose?!, I did a Flowers piece for Phil Stevens I never get bored of looking at.. I did s storyline in Captain Berlin based on my own story " Captain Berlin meets the Elephant Man" which I think turned out beautifully!. It's all in German but there is talk of releasing an English version soon. Mainly as I said I'm just proud to be a part of churning pool of creativity that is the underground horror scene right now. It's bloody electric!!
Matt : Inspiration ? is there anything or anyone that inspires you daily to do what you do ?
Martin: I'm starting to sound like a repetitive sap here now but I'm inspired by many of the guys in the underground right now.. I've Always been inspired by Jorg as an artist.. The man is a genius! Growing up I was inspired by Graham Humphreys- he designed the original Evil Dead poster art in the UK, nightmare on elm street etc.. Right up to today the guy is still knocking it out of the park with his Arrow video artwork.. The zombie flesh eaters artwork was amazing!.. He's got such an amazing body of work behind him. Again.. Genius! And I must add a genuinely nice guy! For real!.
Phil Stevens has been a bit of an inspiration lately too.. Flowers blew me away.. The guy is a great painter and having seen flowers and gotten to know him a little he seems to carry that painters ethic through to his movie making.. With the editing and soundscapes etc. I admire creative " entities" like him.. When that passion is carried over various media.
Matt: Where can someone get a piece of your artwork (hint hint ;))
Martin: If anyone is interested in grabbing some art from me you can get I touch via my Facebook art page Martin Trafford Traffart.
I'm always happy to try help get filmmakers work off the ground with supporting poster or DVD art.
Matt: What have been your standout movies of 2015 in the indie horror scene?
Martin: Standout movies?! Found blew me away! Headless of course.. I'm a big James Bell fan so after Dog Dick Maneur was great.. I've just got Tantrum to watch right now but I'm sure it'll be amazing! Pain Shack was ALOT of fun! Alex has natural comedic timing.. AGP was a bit of a landmark event, can't wait to see what comes next with blood shock?!! Crazy Murder was interesting.. Visceral: between the ropes of madness.. There are so many to be honest it's a great time
Matt: What does the future hold ?
Martin : Well, as I mentioned there is my project with Parker, Joey, Justin and Phil.. Which I'm psyched about.. Such a great group of guys I'm happy to call friends!.. There's a graphic novel in the works with Jorg?! Hopefully.. There's a coue of comic book anthologies coming out with my involvement.. A short film " don't fear the light" which will feature a comic book I created with the director Jason Rostovsky.. Some more DVD artwork for Lostwitch and Caps collective and some exciting Arrow video projects!! I feel very lucky right now!
This was such a pleasure in speaking to the guy himself behind all this amazing visual pieces of artwork, you all need to go and give him a like on the page above but here it is again and if you are interested in a one of a kind piece of work give him a message .....