Art and Cannabis with Barcelona based artist As Rude As Possible
by Shaz Hassan·
"I'm highly inspired by many different things...skateboard designs, hip-hop, punk, pop culture too. I try to absorb everything around me that I love or hate and make it part of my arty world...and if many artists and brands collaborate to create interesting and challenging designs, the view of the public can quickly change."
How did you get started and what's your inspiration with As Rude As Possible?
As Rude As Possible (ARAP) is a concept a friend and I created to label any piece of art that was quite rough or hardcore, in some ways. A couple of years after that, I started to create illustrations and art with a purpose. I was fed up with a minimal design with no meaning so I started to create small stickers and illustrations, roughly done and with a controversial message behind it.
I'm highly inspired by many different things, like skateboard designs (Stickerbomb has a great book about that), hip-hop, punk, and pop culture too. I try to absorb everything around me that I love or hate and make it part of my arty world.
How do you think art can contribute to the change in society's view about cannabis?
I think Cannabis is in some ways, like skateboarding was back in the 70-80s. For many people, it is a childish thing, wrong to do, and a bit sketchy. Skateboarding became mainstream, in part to the marketing and propaganda efforts behind it.
I think the same sort of thing is happening with Cannabis. If many artists and brands collaborate together creating interesting and challenging designs, the view of the public can quickly change.
And how has Covid affected your current and future projects?
I planned a few events that were cancelled during the hard lockdown and the Cannabis Club scene isn't at its most active level now. Although there are some shows I've been invited to and here, I think it will take some time till things become really active again. Thankfully I still have plenty of commission work.
And what are you working on right now?
I just opened a show end of 2020 in a new cannabis club in Barcelona and I'm working on a few new projects. I launched a new series of nuggets stickers and a label design collection for a limited cannabis strain for another cannabis club. I'm planning some new exciting stuff too so check my Instagram to stay up to date.
Do you remember the very first paid job you had?
I think it was a Christmas card design for a car repair workshop. I had to add all the postal cards to the envelopes - I think I spent a full night doing that.
For some reason a couple of years after that, I ended up (working) at an advertising agency where I did a ton of things for other car repair workshops (I think I made around 50 logos for this type of client).
What is the most difficult part of being an independent artist?
Finding a balance between the time spent with daily office stuff and the time to get the work done is a very challenging part. But the general balance of creative work is even worse. How to manage to create client work, side projects for fun, looking for new clients without burning down isn't easy.
What is your favourite piece of work you've done?
One of my favourite designs is the As Rude As Possible design truck, but for now, I've only made it in digital format. It would look great on a big wall or painted on a big canvas.
I also like the new nugget-characters I've been doing lately too. I think the collection is going to grow a lot in the next few months. These small creatures help me to encapsulate any thought or complex idea inside a stoney nugget.
What challenges do you face today that are different than when you started?
When I started I was focused on making noise and creating something people wouldn't be indifferent about. Now I balance that part with being technically correct. I can't do the same type of design for a small label or for a t-shirt, the needs of the medium are different.
Is there anything that you want to share with other independent artists across the globe?
Yes. Just a tip I try to follow myself: don't be too hard on yourself, take your time, enjoy the process, and don't take really long breaks.
If you are interested in his works, check out his website and Instagram for more ARAP's creations. If you need something from our creative studio: motion graphics / animation / shooting / editing please email us here or schedule a conversation with us.