Ally of the Year Interview: Fourscore

2015 was a great year in the Creative Allies world. We paired with a huge range of artists to create incredible designs for t-shirts, album covers, tour posters, postcards, and more. But without you, our independent designers and fans, none of this would be possible. We want to thank you for sharing your passions and ensuring another successful, creative year.

Part of celebrating the close of one year and the start of the next is recognizing the designer who produced the most consistent, quality, and integrative work with us. With your help, we determined our 2015 Ally of the Year to be Fourscore, a freelance illustrator and graphic designer from Bandung, Indonesia (the “City of Flowers”). Fourscore’s intricate designs won him multiple contests and some well-deserved attention in a design realm that was actually quite new to him.

We spoke with Fourscore about his inspiration, process, and how he sees his relationship growing with Creative Allies in the future:

How does it feel being awarded Ally of the Year?twisted_christmas-smI really appreciate it! When I became one of the finalists, I did not expect to win because there are so many great artists and designers in this community. I’m very grateful.

How long have you been designing?
I started designing in high school, but I’ve been drawing since I was a kid. It’s always been a hobby.

What mediums do you use?
I use Adobe Photoshop to design, but I usually start by drawing with just a paper and pencil.

lost_in_hell-SMWhat Inspires you?
There are so many people who have influenced me as a designer, but I am particularly impressed by the style of Kim Jung Gi [Korean illustrator and comic book artist]. He has always been an inspiration to me. His work is so detailed, and he draws with very interesting, dramatic angles. In something like my “Zombie Apocalypse” piece you can see angles like that.

Tell us about your process, from initial concept to completed design. What gets you going? What slows you down?
Coming up with a concept is actually the most difficult part for me. I look for inspiration in movies, comics, on the Internet, but once I start sketching I go easily into detail, and the process goes quickly.prepare_for_apocalypse-sm

What have been some of your favorite pieces, contests, or moments working with Creative Allies this year? What would you like to see or be a part of in the future?

A couple of my favorite band contests were Hollywood Undead and Slipknot, but unfortunately I couldn’t participate in those. My favorite project was Zombie Apocalypse because the detail of it was such a challenge. I had to draw so many zombies.

How did you first hear of Creative Allies? What about it first appealed to you, and what keeps you coming back?
I heard about Creative Allies from a friend who was involved. He had won a couple contests, and it seemed like a fun challenge. And it was: it pushed me to work more and in different areas. I had never designed posters, album covers, or anything like that before. I might like to see Creative Allies offer different kinds of contests, like logos or webpages in the future. Everyone has different, unique skills.

the_pawprint-SM fourscore-beneath-the-sea-sm mystic_goatt_SM

For more of fourscore’s work with Creative Allies,

check out his Profile Page.

Check out this trick to record your creative process

Ever wanted to record your creative process? Check out this speed portrait of Thom Yorke by Rodrigo Ramos, then try it with one of your own projects. As always, feel free to share it with us!

How to record in Photoshop

How to record in Illustrator



Creative Allies Alum Featured on New Orleans Jazz Fest Poster

preshallCreative Allies alumni, Preservation Hall Jazz Band will be featured on the 45th Anniversary New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival poster. Designed by Terrance Osborne, this marks the first time a musical group has been featured as part of the artwork.


Graphic Design On The Small Screen

right actionMusic videos are short films, integrating song and imagery that have continuously evolved from the feature films of The Beatles in the 1960′s, to the single track videos that began airing on MTV back in 1981. However, they remain the same at their core: a narrative somehow strengthened by the song the video depicts. The band is usually seen, even if for only a moment. And they are all, well, video: moving images for a set period of time. When a band wants to break out of this decades’ old norm, they end up working with Jonas Odell. (more…)

Nicolae Negura aka cucubaou is 2013 Ally of the Year

NicolaeRomanian-born, Portugal-based designer Nicolae Negura works under the name cucubaou and turns out thoughtful-yet-edgy illustrations with a distinctly European flair. And, with two winning designs (for Nelly Furtado  and Alpine) along with a slew of Editor’s Choice designs throughout 2013, he has been named our newest Ally of the Year.

“Thank you to all the Creative Allies crew, for this and other great opportunities,” said Negura.

See the interview below for more on where he finds inspiration and  his background in art and design.


Ally Spotlight: Leafo

Leafo_KT_Tunstall_PosterHayley Leaf (aka leafo) won Heart’s Creative Allies contest during the summer of 2012, and she followed it up this year by winning the KT Tunstall tour art competition in July. With those projects to show, Leaf has kept busy as plenty of local Manchester, England bands approached her for help. “It’s great because I’ve always admired band artwork and collected many books on this such as Gig Posters,” Leaf says. “To think that I am now getting the opportunity to design these myself is absolutely brilliant.” (more…)

Ally Spotlight: Matt Dyck

randolphCanadian designer Matt Dyck (of MattDyckStudios) and winner of the Robert Randolph and The Family Band commemorative art contest has been working in graphic design for more than a decade.

Dyck talked with Creative Allies to share his where he finds inspiration, including some unexpected forums. (more…)

Ally Spotlight: Ivan Sciberras

ivanIvan Sciberras  a designer from the rural village of Gharghur in Malta, creates bold, graphic images imbued with shadow and light. His winning submissions for Creative Allies include haunting works for Counting Crows and Dan Reardon. Angular, saturated pieces for Preservation Hall Jazz Band and Jessie Ware strike a different chord but are just as engaging.


Now Accepting Nominations for Ally of the Year 2013

AOTY-FB-GFXWhich Creative Ally inspired you in 2013?

The Ally of the Year Award is our way of thanking the most active members of the Creative Allies community whose art was of the highest quality and creativity throughout the year. Help us select our 2013 winner. (more…)

“Under the Covers” With Drew Holcomb

drew holcombDrew Holcomb says of the album art for Good Light“So, that’s in East Nashville, it’s on Forest Avenue, which is like a couple blocks from where we live.” (more…)