Tattoo artists and screen printer Kreatyves began his creative career as a professional lighting designer but gave up this profession to pursue his dream. He now lives Berlin and works from a private studio in the heart of the city. We spoke with Kreatyves about his artistic influences, and the current fascinations feeding into his creative work.
Would you say that you’ve always been artistically inclined?
I guess so. I’ve always enjoyed drawing. But I never knew I could call what I do art until I did an international exchange in Canada when I was 16.
Anyone who visits your website can see you're a man of many talents. Alongside tattooing, paint, screen print and design packaging. More recently, you’ve been making 3D laser cut artworks. Where do all of these skill come from?
I’ve always learned by doing. When something intrigues me, I tend to investigate. I talk people. I like the idea of a trade being passed on from one person to another. In fact a lot of the things I do, are not taught in a school. A trade like tattooing or screenprinting requires a special set of skills that you can only learn from someone who knows that process like the back of his hand. I’m lucky enough to have been taught by some very talented people.
Are collaborations important to you? If yes, why?
Collaborations are not something I look for. They just happen. I think that comes through travelling
and working at conventions. I meet a lot of likeminded
people and so when “collaborations” happen,
it’s really just meeting with friends and making something fun together.
The skull is a recurrent motif in your designs and a curious object for many artists. What does the skull represent to you?
Skulls are just rad! They’re both physically beautiful and disturbing at the same time. A skull is something we all have in common. They are undeniably a symbol of death, which is actually quite important to me since death comes to everybody and I feel that accepting this is quite essential to living life to it’s fullest.
So symbolism plays an significant role in your work?
Yes, definitely! I’m really interested in all sorts of symbols. But mostly ancient symbols, some of which are still relevant and used today. Alchemical symbol , mythological symbols
Your work is often described as “surreal”. Is surrealism a style you actively pursue?
Yeah, there is an element of surrealism in my work. I have always been influenced by the surrealists Dali, Magritte, for example. It’s not a style that I try to be associated with, I try not to define my style at all. But I do enjoy the potential for possibilities (or rather impossibilities) images have when approached with a surrealist mindset.
Apart from the surrealists, who else has helped shape your artistic style?
I can’really pinpoint any one particular artists or person. My inspiration comes from many people and places. I like to research my projects, so I guess I source inspiration based on what I’m working on at the time.
We’re intrigued by your use of colour. Why do you limit your colour pallette?
When it comes to colours, I really believe that less is more. Especially when I design tattoos. My colour scheme has become integral part of work and is becoming something people can easily recognise me by.
What are you currently fascinated by and how is it feeding into your work?
Laser cutters are my thing at the moment. Using them has been a bit of a challenge and something I’ve had to learn. But I’m always up for learning new things it forces me to approach my ideas in different ways.
You can see more of Kreatyves work on his website ( www.kreatyves.de )