Behind the Board: Spring Break Jake

Behind the Board: Spring Break Jake

<<< Back to Artist Series

The Fireball Artist Series has been carefully curated to, of course, bring you super rad limited edition deck designs, but also give an insight into the minds of the artists behind them. For this second installment we catch up with Shredosaurus illustrator Spring Break Jake

Check out Jake's entry to the Artist Series here

Born: Minneapolis, MN
Resides: Bend, OR

Coffee/Tea: Tea all the way. I get a lot of grief for it but I absolutely hate the taste of coffee.

Text/Call: TEXT. I’m way too introverted for phone calls.

Beer/wine: Beer as long as it’s light, citrusy, & tropical!

Paper/Digital: This is probably blasphemy to a lot of illustrators but for sure digital. The iPad changed my life.

Netflix/Youtube: Netflix. I might be full-on addicted to The Office.

Shark/Tiger: Shark! My wife and I are trying to find some hammerheads on our next dive trip.

Car/Bike: Bike for sure. Besides the exercise and environmental benefits, I despise trying to find a parking spot.

Spring Break Jake is a persona born through a passion for turning every day into a vacation without ignoring the darker side of life.

With a desire to create low-brow art with a high-brow message, Jake set off on his mission to make the heavier parts of life feel conquerable by tapping into all things tropical. The goal: create a sense of solidarity and remove the stigmas around the mental health struggles we all experience but too often don’t discuss.

'Wherever my travel obsession takes me, I always draw inspiration from the people, places, and palettes I love most. Whether it’s a simple color that catches my eye or a whole culture & place I’ve never experienced before, I’m eternally searching, learning, growing, and developing my style and abilities'

What does the term ‘art' mean to you?

To me, it just means anything creative that someone fully puts themselves into. For a long time, whenever I heard the word art, I immediately thought of painting, like that was the truest form of “art”. It really wasn’t until I got into a creative career that my perspective shifted to see everything creative as art; a great song, epic architecture, a hilarious stand-up set. I think as long as the artist is putting themselves and their personality into the work, that’s art baby!

How did you get started in your career?

It was all thanks to my then-girlfriend, now-wife! When we met I was working at a snowboard shop and had the dream of becoming a freelance graphic designer. She had been a freelancer for about 10 years at that point and was incredibly supportive and encouraging of me taking the plunge. I really wouldn’t be where I am today without her, she has fully been my muse.

When did you know you wanted to be an artist?

Honestly, not until very recently. I’ve always loved doing illustration work but for the last few years I wanted to be a Graphic Designer (which frankly is an art form of its own). It wasn’t until I got commissioned to paint a couple of murals for Avid Cider Co. in Bend that I fully knew I wanted to be an illustrator/muralist.

Favorite project you’ve worked on?

Well, definitely this skateboard with you guys, but that’s too obvious... I was commissioned to do a line of snowboards for my friend’s company back in Minnesota, The Interior Plain Project. It really meant a lot to not only design snowboards for a friend, but also for a company with such strong roots where I grew up. It’s also a company that does a lot to support the Midwest snow scene that made me fall in love with snowboarding.

Favorite piece of art in general?

Punk vests. They’re a super personal thing that people (at least me) put a lot of time and care into. Patches, pins, artwork- it’s a canvas that you can wear. Plus, seeing other people’s is a great way to find your next favorite band!

Who (or what) inspires you professionally?

What inspires me the most is vulnerability. I look up to a lot of artists, but my favorites are the ones who really put themselves out there emotionally and speak about very personal things in tandem with creating awesome art. Their honesty gives so much meaning to their work, and inspires me to do the same.

If you could no longer draw what would you do?

Hopefully I could still be a Graphic Designer and remain in a creative field. Otherwise, I think I’d want to go back to school and become a marine biologist or some profession that lets me live somewhere tropical and do environmental conservation work.

Ultimate dinner guest?

Patton Oswalt. He has been my favorite comedian for a long time now and it would be amazing to talk Star Wars with him.

Ultimate car?

As a teen I had an ‘87 Mercury Cougar with a red velvet interior, I’d love to be able to drive that beauty around again.

Favorite Movie?

Away We Go. I’m a sucker for the indie rom coms, plus Jim Halpert is in it.

Most gifted item?

It’s kind of ridiculous but probably a mug. My wife and I briefly started a camp/van accessories brand called Green River Goods. It went nowhere but we unloaded a bunch of the ceramic mugs on friends and family!

Quote to live by...

“Do you.”

spring break jake, cruiser breakdown

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