1. How did you get your start in the handmade community?
Polkela is a collaboration between Max Podemski and me, Sarah Klinger. Max started making vernacular architecture posters after he returned to Los Angeles from living in New York (where he and I met). Seeing the city from a fresh perspective, he was struck by the diversity of residential architecture and decided to make a poster commemorating it. I followed him to LA shortly after visiting. Because I don't have a car, I was introduced to the city via long walks across town and soon started making my own LA inspired art. We began selling posters at stores around town and eventually decided to create a brand.
2. What do you feel makes your work unique and truly your own?
We come from very different professional backgrounds. I'm a trained illustrator and Max is a professional urban planner. The intersection of our work is a love for cities, particularly their idiosyncratic details. We like to think of ourselves as making LA mementos but for locals instead of tourists.
3. What or Who Inspires you?
Our work is inspired by Los Angeles-- not the famous landmarks featured in the media but the everyday built environment that is familiar to Angelenos. This includes hamburger stands, taco trucks, storefront synagogues, and the mountain lion in Griffith Park. The city is endlessly fascinating. An ideal weekend for us is one spent walking around.
4. What is your creative process like?
We start by photographing buildings. We drive or walk around a particular neighborhood, take pictures and sometimes even use google street view. The photos are then used as the basis for our drawings. I make digital sketches before painting a final version that I clean up in Photoshop. Max draws first and plans his posters once he's done. Although we usually have our work printed by a local screen printer, we sometimes feel brave enough to do the screen printing in our apartment. It's a total mess, but we love it.
5. What is the coolest artistic tip you have ever received?
That a flea market is one of the best places to gather inspiration. Try it when you are in a creative rut!
6. What can we expect to see from you at Jackalope?
We will have our full line of products including prints and our new "recuredo de los angeles" bandanas and LABC tote bags.