PAUL ALLENDER is known worldwide as the main songwriter and guitarist of CRADLE OF FILTH… but did you know, that he’s also a very Talented Dark Artist? The other day I had an interesting chat with Paul, trying to find out more about this other side of him… and his VOMITORIUM ART!
Hi Paul, welcome back to Metal Shock! some months ago we had a chat and we were talking about music, but today we’ve another topic.. 🙂
Thanks Tarja, pleasure to be back my friend (;,,;)
Paul, besides you’re the main songwriter and guitarist of Cradle of Filth but you’re also a very talented artist. Let’s talk about the beginning… how and when everything started, artistic-wise?
It all started in 1996 when I befriended with the owner of a design company, he let me go there in the evenings to teach myself Photoshop. After playing around with the software I was pretty hooked with it and found out that I had a great understanding for the program which lead me to learn as much as I could.
How would you describe your art-style?
How would I describe my art style!! err… weird lol. Not sure to be honest, I suppose it’s different. I’ve never really seen anything like my style out there, it’s pretty original, well that’s what I’ve been told at least.
Who are your role models, talking about personages and characters?
I dont have any, I’m a very Independent man and have always been ever since I was a child, I’ve always done stuff for myself and never rely on anyone to do anything for me, It’s basically down to pride and honour.
What is the connection between your art and the fictional cosmic entity Cthulhu?
To be honest there isn’t that much of a connection, I just love the idea of Cthulhu and how it captures the nightmares and imagination of the human psyche.
How your art and music are connected to one another? or are they two separate things? and how do you divide your time between them?
I suppose my art and music are connected because of the main creative source, i.e. me! I do keep them separate though, I work on things when the time arises, when i have to do Cradle stuff I then make it my main priority because in the end of the day the band is my main thing, I work really fast so I find time to do everything pretty much all the time, I have a very professional nature when it comes to working on things I love doing and can time manage very well.
Your designs have been seen also for example in Cradle products. Will these “band-products” be part of your work also in the future?
Yes, right now I’m doing the design work for a band called Dawn Of Ashes, I’ve produced a few shirts for them and perhaps will be doing their next album art. I’m also looking for other bands to work with and perhaps get into comic book covers or movie posters. But right now I’m concentrating on getting my Vomitorium merchandise company up and running.
When a hobby became a profession? With other words, when you got really into it?
It will always be a passion and a hobby but it becomes a profession when you start getting paid for your work. The level of detail I put into my work will always be the same if it stayed a hobby or not.
What were the reasons that you founded Vomitorium Art? If my sources don’t fail, it was during your “pause” from COF, in 2000, right?
I actually took a break from the band from 1996 to december 1999, in this period I discovered photoshop, it was around 2002 when I decided to start Vomitorium.
Well that means I should change my sources, hahah… but tell me about this name Vomitorium… what does it mean and why you chose it to sympolize your art?
A Vomitorium is a place where romans use to vomit after gorging themselves at gladiator games so they could basically eat more food. I mean there’s various descriptions what a Vomitorium actually is but I like the one about people throwing up, I think this suites my art very well and the name fits amazing for the images i create.
Where you take the ideas for your designs? I mean, what gives you the initial kick for a new design? and tell me about the creative process how your idea becomes a design?
If I’m working for a client then the ideas come from them unless they want me to have an input. When I’m working on my own art then I just make it up as I go along. I have a few ideas for some future projects like “The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari”, “Shewolf” and “Baby Cthulhu”, these projects will be shot from scratch with models etc.
At the moment you design t-shirts and prints… do you have a plan to enlarge also to other products?
I’m releasing my art on t-shirts now, the first shirt will be my image Cthulhu Rising. It should be out very soon on a mens t-shirt and a girls vest top. I’m taking it very slowly because it has to be done right, if it all goes well then I will release more designs of original art. I’m also giving away an A3 glossy print of Cthulhu Rising with the first 100 shirts sold, the prints will be signed by me and numbered.
You’re working with the photographer Cindy Frey, tell me about this collaboration …
It all started in around 2002 – 2003, we met at Grasspop festival and got talking about art and photography. Cindy sent me a photo she had taken and I set about editing it, she thought it was great and then sent me a ton more stuff. I stopped Vomitorium for a while because of some life changes that I was going through and just recently started it up again on my own.
Talking about the technical part, what softwares and programs you’re using while creating your art?
When I’m on the road I use a 15″ MacBook Pro with a 2.53GHz intel Core Duo processor which has 4GB of memory running Photoshop CS2 and a graphics tablet. When at home I use an Intel 3.2GHz quad core Mac which has 16GB (which will soon be upgraded to 32GB) of memory, a Wacom Cintiq 21UX touch screen digitiser running Photoshop CS5, Cinema 4D r10 and Aftereffects CS3.
If I’d like to see and order your art, where I can do it? gimme some links, thankssss…
Sure, you can buy prints from www.paulallender.co.uk and the t-shirts from www.ed-stone.com/home/store/allendervomitorium. You will also be able to access the t-shirts from my site too 🙂
You can also contact me through my face book www.facebook.com/vomitoriumltd or firstname.lastname@example.org
Will it be only an online marketing or are you planning someday to have your own store chain in different countries?
For now it’s just going through the Ed Stone web store, they ship world wide so getting to different counties isn’t a problem, we have spoken about getting my shirts out in retail very soon and once that happens everyone will know about it 🙂
Cool! Now a question that has for me a personal interest 🙂 in one of your prints there’s also a landscape from Helsinki, my home town… is there a change to see it also on a t-shirt? 🙂
Yes quite possibly 🙂 If you’re lucky that is!! lol just kidding :p
You’ve also ventured into the areas of Animation with After Effects & Cinema 4D, anything you’d like tell me about this field?
I’ve always been interested in animation and compiling 3D animation onto clean plates. Motion tracking is another interest of mine. I’ve been to a couple of C4D lectures hosted by Maxon, they’re pretty good and well worth the money. Aftereffects is more my thing though, I just find it pretty easy and can kinda generate pretty much anything I want. Working in 3D layers within Aftereffects is definitely the way to go.
I’ve read somewhere that you have degrees in several martial arts training styles, and that you’re a motorcycle enthusiast. Would you like to tell me about this side of you?
I’ve been doing martial arts since i was 6 years old. I started with Wado Ryu and did this for many years. I then went onto a style called Yosiekan and taught privately. I wanted to try something different while I was training and went and had private lessons in Wing Chun and Seven Star Preying Mantis. I haven’t trained for a while but once I get back home I will be starting it up again.
I love bikes, my last one was a Yamaha FZ1, I added a ton of aftermarket parts on it and it was gorgeous!! I’m planning on getting another one, I want a Suzuki 1000 so I will turn that into a street fighter too. Customising bikes is a ton of fun, it’s like being creative with my art, I see what I want to do on a bike and I know it will look amazing when I’ve finished it…. mean as fuck!!!! lol
I know this question makes part of your private life, but tell me about your normal 24-hours’ day…
My normal day usually consists waking up at around 6 am and checking emails, usually there’s interviews there so I do them whilst drinking some ridiculously strong coffee 🙂 I then cook breakfast whilst listening to some pretty loud music, usually Judas Priest!! Then I wait for an hour after eating and then go to the gym. Most of my day is creating either art or music and if I’m on a creative lull I will watch a film. I like everything to be spotless in the house so I’m a bit of a cleaning freak to be honest, it’s easy to be productive when everything is in order.
…so, what you’re doing WHEN you happen to have some spare-time?
Lol my spare time is either playing guitar or creating with photoshop
Well, I guess it’s time now to make the last question… what are your artistical greetings to our readers?
All I can say is keep creating and when those artistic juices flow run with them, design, create and paint from the heart no matter what’s your medium. In the end, as long as you love what you do and what you have done then it’s perfect. I will be attending the H.P. Lovecraft & Cthulhucon as an exhibiting artist (www.hplfilmfestival.com) in september at Grand Warner, San Pedro (LA), CA, so if anyone wants to come say hi then please do (;,,;)
Thanks Paul, for this very interested interview to find out more about your “other me”. All the good vibes for your art and may it bring you to where you want to arrive with it… Take Care!
Interview by Tarja Virmakari – Photos sent by Paul Allender
To read our recent interview with Paul, please go HERE.