Artist of the Month: Anthony Snyder

by Dr. Jessie Voigts / Oct 01, 2017 /
Dr. Jessie Voigts's picture

A ghostbuster, pop culture fanatic, and an artist - obviously I wanted to feature him.

So we met up in a corner of a Barnes and Noble, sadly not over coffee, and listened and talked about his many passions, learning very quickly how interesting he is. Now, you don't have to meet up with him to learn this, as I think his art shows it just as well. 

Creative, colorful, unique, and with subtle elements of dark humor, you won't find anything like this on earth (or even in space). Presenting our artist of the month, cartoonist and illustrator Anthony Snyder...

Kalamazoo Ghostbuster and artist Anthony Snyder (middle)
Kalamazoo Ghostbuster Anthony Snyder (middle)

Kalamazoo Ghostbusters, by artist Anthony Snyder

How long have you been an artist?
I've been drawing since I was 4 years old. My mom is a fine arts painter who painted a lot of landscape paintings, and I'd often ask her to draw me pictures of Superman and watch as she did it. I'd usually critique the work and mention that I think the arms should be bigger or the chest wider. After a few times, she told me "I think you can draw him by now, you've seen me do it enough times." So I did, and have drawn ever since.  

Trash monster by artist Anthony Snyder

Is your art your full-time career?
Not exactly, my art is more part time right now. As a freelance illustrator you have periods of feast and famine, where you may get a lot of projects come up at once and then may not have anything for quite a while. It is a passion I do hope I could turn into a full time gig.

the problem with opening up an ancient Egyptian tomb, by artist Anthony Snyder
Gallery from the Grave, By artist Anthony Snyder

Where do you work?  How long have you been there?
My day job is actually as a Transportation Coordinator at a Senior Living retirement community, or as I call myself "Grandma's Get-a-way driver!" I've been with the company for 12 years, because old folks are cool. They also are great at encouraging my artistic passions!

The zombies who didn't eat brains, by artist Anthony Snyder

Do you have favorite places you like to create?
Hmm. You never quite know where inspiration will strike, but I often enjoy creating my artwork in my "monster room," a place in my basement where I'm surrounded by all the greats - "Frankenstein", "Wolfman", "Creature From The Black Lagoon" - and just let the creative horrors flow :P 

Artist Anthony Snyder's work
Artist Anthony Snyder's work space
Pool of the Dead, by Anthony Snyder
Run! by artist Anthony Snyder

What does a typical day look like? Is there a typical day?
A typical day as it deals with drawing and illustration is difficult to say for me personally. The times when I'm illustrating a children's book, my day is usually more a night time, and I may sit at my drafting table for a while just trying to imagine the scenes in my head from the words the author puts down. Then from those mental images, I try to take a mental snapshot of what I think the perfect way to visualize a part of what the author is saying will look like - and try to get it at the right angle or expression or moment on the paper. The idea itself is the longest and hardest part of the process.

Aliens, by artist Anthony Snyder

What materials do you prefer?
I work mostly with Prismacolor art markers on a Bristol board, which is a harder kind of paper ,like illustration board, that takes ink and marker better without bleeding into the paper. I do most of my work by hand and just do minor edits in a photoshop-type program, if necessary. 

Alien planet, by Anthony Snyder
  
Where/How are you inspired?
For my personal artwork, most of my inspiration comes from a combination of the classic horror movies or old 50's style horror comics I love and the 1980's/90's style animations I used to watch as a child. They can usually get me wanting to pick up a piece of paper and pencil fairly quick.

Gallery from the Grave, artist Anthony Snyder
brb...from dead! Artist Anthony Snyder

How do you know when your piece is done? Do you work on one or more pieces at a time?
Someone once said "an artist never completes a piece of artwork, they just abandon it." Which I can see the truth in - I don't know if I ever feel like the illustration is ever fully completed, or that I can't do it even better a second time around. The process itself is usually what's so fun and engaging, not as much the finished product itself. I'll usually work on one "project" at a time, not always just one picture, unless I'm really feeling that picture, in which case I'll work on it all night until it looks how I want it to. Otherwise if it's a book, I do all the sketching first, for all the illustrations, then go back and do all the ink work, and then go back and do all the color, like an artistic assembly line.

Zombie emerging, by artist Anthony Snyder
QBee wants to be a firefighter. Art by Anthony Snyder

If you were not an artist, what would you do?
That's an odd question for me, because if I didn't draw I'd probably sculpt, or act, or try an instrument, or sing. To be alive and creative is to be an artist of some medium, so I'm not sure I would be anything if I wasn't being creative. 

Salad?! by artist Anthony Snyder

How can our readers find and purchase your art?
Currently, my artwork isn't up anywhere, but I often have local art shows where I'll have my artwork up for sale at Water Street Coffee Joint or the like. They can always get in touch with me directly at my email address anthonyofkalamazoo[at]gmail.com if they're interested in a caricature or commissioned work, or maybe a piece they saw of my work here or elsewhere. The books unfortunately went out of print after the publisher went under in 2013, so since then the author and I only have a small collection of them left. It was fun while it lasted, though, and I'm always up to do more drawing for those who enjoy my particular style. 

Artist Anthony Snyder
QBee wants to be a schoolteacher. Art by Anthony Snyder
Qbee wants to be a pilot. Art by Anthony Snyder
Qbee wants to be an author. Art by Anthony Snyder

 
Find Anthony online:
https://www.facebook.com/AnthonySnydersArtwork/

 

Never fight the urge to create - quote by artist Anthony Snyder

 

All photos courtesy and copyright Anthony Snyder