Sébastien Feraut aka Niark1 is a Parisian who now lives and works in Montpellier. He has featured in many STICKERBOMB books and over the years we’ve seen his style evolve, change and embrace graffiti, street art, urban art as well as surrealism and psychedelia.
Your art is very unique. At times surreal and colourful and often psychedelic, what inspires your creativity?
Hey, thank you. Well, I’m inspired by so many things – it’s a bit difficult to list all my inspirations, but I’m inspired by several pictural and artistic movements. Surrealism, cubism, raw art, figuration libre, expressionism, primitive flemish … also by underground and alternative graphic scenes. African, Mexican, and Oceanian ethnic art is a big inspiration too. Also, I am a big fan of horror monster movies too! (my favourite one are the retro movies with cheap costume monsters).
You have made the most beautiful, wonderful monsters we have ever seen. Can you tell us a bit more about how you started and how these monsters became a predominant part your work?
Thanks again. As I said before, I’m a big fan of monsters since I’m a young kid.
I was reading a lot about mythological stories with Egyptian and Greek gods and creatures and other folk tales and legends. And of course, as every child, I loved a lot of dinosaurs too. So I drew all a bunch of monsters inspired by these stories.
I have always preferred to draw strange creatures than humans. This really more fun to create. There is no limit. You make everything you want depending on your imagination and then improvise any shapes possible.
There are no morphological or logical rules. Also, monsters can represent a lot of real human emotions and tempers. So, to be succinct, I like to create monsters.
Are there other artists who you’re particularly interested in at the moment, or who have influenced your work?
There are so many! To name some of them, I’m a big fan of Stephane Blanquet’s works.
Charles Burns, and a lot of other ones. And of course essential artists like Basquiat, Picasso, Bacon, Miro…
How does the recent pandemic affect your current and future projects?
Well, there was a lot of aborted canceled due to the COVIS health situation ( shows, artistic residences, job orders….) But at the same time, I had some digital jobs that I could do at home during the confinement.
This is a bit complicated for everyone I suppose. I don’t want to complain.
Do you remember the very first paid job you had and what kinds of commission works do you currently offer to your clients?
Well, I started as a web designer at the beginning of 2000. I was working for a company but it became quickly boring so I decided to work on my own stuff. It was not very easy at the beginning but with the internet, I have the possibility to show my personal work online and that has been a really good opportunity for me.
During that period I was making a lot of flyer designs for electronic music parties. But my first ” big ” job as a freelancer and ” artist ” was for Eastpak Europe. I created several visuals based on their advertising campaign and made some weird graphic punk photo collage with illustrations and graphics integrated for their customers’ catalogs.
What has been your favourite piece of work you’ve done and why?
This is difficult to say. Generally, I like the last pieces I have done. But one in particular is a drawing on paper with some collages. I did this in 2018 and I’m very attached to it.
And what is the most difficult part of being an independent artist?
The most difficult part is having absolutely no idea about the future and how this will become your career. Sometimes you have to face empty periods having no sales, orders, or just no inspiration. That could generate doubt and discouragement. That’s why you have to insist and never stop working.
Is there anything that you want to share with other independent artists across the globe?
Trust in yourself and don’t listen to other people who want to give you lessons. Just listen to yourself and make what you love to do and not try to make art for others. Create, test, experiment, try different media, and be curious.
For more of Niarks works, head on to his website, and check out his Instagram. If you need to commission him or you need some creative video, motion graphics / animation / shooting or editing please email us here or schedule a conversation with us. We’ll also be selling some of his sticker packs right here, so go support an artist and go grab a pack now!