eric yahnker


Interview by Ryan Christian – ryan(at)fecalface.com

So one thing I immediately noticed is that your works and resume begin in 2007. What was going on for you up until then? I know you were working on some television shows. What on earth made you decide to start making these drawings?

I originally started out in journalism, and then worked in comedy and animation for about a decade on shows like South Park, MADtv, and Seinfeld, as well as a fist-full of animated commercials — some good, some bad. The way I saw it was commercial studios were the only arena left in animation that hadn’t yet traded in all their pencils and paper for computers. But, no matter how you slice it, when you’re working in commercials, you could be the most brilliant experimental animator, painstakingly manipulating and pixilating hand-pigmented salt with the ass feathers of a Siberian crane on an antique multi-plane camera, win big golden testicles at every prestigious international film festival, and in the end, all the ‘powers that be’ will say is, “boy howdy, that’s gorgeous! Can you do that for my client, Gas-X?” In August 2004, I just quit everything, rented a studio, and started making work.

Another thing that comes to my attention quickly is noticing that almost all of your 2d work is really large. You seem to really whiz through these, while being able to retain a pretty astonishing amount of detail. How do you approach a giant blank piece of paper?

The larger the drawing, the easier it is to perfect details. Graphite and me have gotten past the awkward dating stage and are keeping a toothbrush and set of p.j.’s at each other’s places. Colored pencil is getting there, even though on occasion it plays hard to get or won’t return my call. I consciously like my work to maintain a look of ease, but I do log a ton of hours. Like Charlie Chaplin said, “art is the concealment of effort.”

check out the rest of the interview at fecal face…
http://www.fecalface.com/SF/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=1603&Itemid=92

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