Monday, 14 May 2012

Steven Appleby

Steven Appleby - As ice-breakers go, a 20 something Steven Appleby clad in full cat-woman costume is a unique way to go about it. This photograph was to set the tone for the rest of the morning and make some quite compulsive viewing. Obsessions featured as both the title and context through which we were guided through the life, work and philosophy of Steven. These included influences from a very early age such as science fiction, which began when his mother introduced him to the work of Philip K Dick, and the more personal of fixations such as secrets, sex, transgender, a fascination with death avoiding it and staying young.    

“I always felt like the world was deceiving me. I try to look at things beyond what they appear on the surface. We all have hidden layers. There's this huge part of us isn’t seen." 

We learn that Steven uses his characters as an outlet for his obsessions. He believes that the key to his success is that he follows personal interest when creating work on a commercial basis. He creates work that he would enjoy reading himself. One of his most renown successes was envisaged whilst day dreaming of an alien invasion. Captain Star was created for new music express in 1984. It received a cult following and made Steven's name in comics. Within 10 years a Tv show had been created and produced and aired in Britain and Canada. The process was hard. Drawings had to be sent backwards and forwards from steven to the animators. Steven would draw the initial sketch, and the animators would have to produce the scene in their best like-for-like ability. The show became a large success and forwarded Steven's career to a new level.  

“One thing I found is that my work is about ideas and creating worlds. Im not limited to drawings. It can be a stage performance or an animation.”  

Steven’s work has appeared in innumerable newspapers and magazines; currently the Loomus comic strip in the Guardian.; he has written over twenty books, The most recent of which is The Coffee Table Book of Doom. He has managed to stretch his capabilities to allow his work to appear on stage in musical play Crocks in Frocks. He is currently working on an art installation and his first novel.  

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