kozyndan are Los Angeles based mad scientists. they are working on a secret formula for controlled nuclear fusion, and are creating a line of edible chickens. They live indoors and don’t paint on walls. the couple also moonlights as freelance illustrators.
kozyndan are Los Angeles based mad scientists. they are working on a secret formula for controlled nuclear fusion, and are creating a line of edible chickens. For fun they like to take long deep breaths and dip their heads into bowls of rasberry jelly and lemon curd. They live indoors and don’t paint on walls. the couple also moonlights as freelance illustrators.
Visit their awesome site to see even more of their artwork, read their lovely blog and buy their cool stuff: www.kozyndan.com
Thanks for participating in ‘Broaden Your Horizon’ – What was your first thought when we asked you to be a part of it?
Dan: Wow – LOMO! Wow – Panoramics!
So, you’ve been toting around this Russian camera for the past 8 weeks. What do you think of it?
D: I think it is a lot of fun. As artist as have a hard time just focusing on one thing without putting it in context of its surroundings. A lot of our work revolves around a lot of characters and big environments, so this camera was made for us.
What is your approach to (Horizon) Lomography?
D: I don’t know that have an approach yet – we just liked the notion of being able to capture a better feel of what is actually going on AROUND us, rather than just the tunnel of what is directly in front of us. In the hands of a skilled photographer i imagine that the camera would open up new levels of possibility in the narrative component of photos.
Which Horizon photo is your absolute favorite and why?
D: I am not sure we have really taken any good photos after just a few rolls (especially since we are wholly inept with cameras), but, despite it being messed up i like the portrait of the dog because I really got the sensation that the image was somehow taken by another dog.
Kozy: I like the double exposed waterfall image just because it was so unexpected. I think the idea of the unexpected is what makes using Lomos great.
D: I guess some of the shots in Shibuya are good too, just because they remind me of your panoramic background drawings to mucH: It’s strange to create that kind of image in a whole mechanical way rather than with a pencil.
How has this project ‘broadened your horizon?’
D: This is the first Lomo, the first camera in general that really changed my approach to composing images. It is the camera that gives me the closest representation of what i actually see, and allows us to capture the things that lie in the periphery of our vision rather than what we centrally focus on.
Some words of inspiration and advice to all the new horizon shooters out there…
D: I don’t know – I guess just take all the space you have available now try using all of it!
Talk to us briefly about what you do.
D: We make silly images together. We live, love, and travel.
How would you describe each other?
K: I think we are somewhat similar. We are both dorks, foodies, perverts, selfish, and willing to try anything once. We are weird.
D: I think kozy is a lot more mature though – she has a much better work ethic and secretly has an amazing wit.
Where and how did you meet?
D: We met in college – in beginning painting class. The students were taking turns modelling for the class. I saw her standing up in front of us and my life changed directions.
Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?
K: I don’t know – we always change our minds and goals. We will be wherever ever our work takes us.
D: Wherever our love takes us.
You’ve taken pictures both in LA and Tokyo – where is your inspiration bigger?
D: Well – LA is sort of our nitty gritty daily real life locale. Here in LA we I am more inspired by the people in our lives than the look of our surroundings. Tokyo is sort of a whacked out fantasyland – its a definite visual treat, or more correctly it is visual overload. There is a lot to be inspired by visually.
Is blogging a big part of your communication in general, seems that you have a very big fan community out there.
D: Blogging has become a big part of the way we communicate and are even influenced by people who appreciate work. When we began making art together we didn’t have so many people in our lives that really understood us. We hoped in part that by getting our work out there we might find other people who appreciate the world the way we do and this has totally happened. Our blog is a great way to communicate with these people, and is just a lot of fun actually, to keep a record of what we do together.
Give us one book, one album, one movie, and one artist that have really impacted your life.
D: That is always a tough question – so many great artists out there in all medias that really rock our world. Chris Ware, Dan Clowes, Scott McCloud’s Understanding Comics, Yamaguchi Akira, Yonehara Yasamusa, Olga Dugina and Andrej Dugin, Makoto Aida, Morimoto Koji, Takagi Masakatsu, Matthew Herbert, The Books, Nick Drake, Egon Schiele, David Choe, Michel Gondry, David Mamet, Pixar
You have done album covers for artists like ‘Postal Service’ and ‘Weezer’ – how did that come about? How much does music influence your work?
D: Music is a huge influence in our life and work. We always jump at the chance to make album covers if we like the music. Kozy is a huge music fanatic and music is always playing while we work. We listen to a of stuff that is rather abstract or chaotic sonically, stuff that is very open ended. Those kinds of sounds tend to conjure up images for us and get us into a certain type of thinking. Not sure kozyndan would exist without our ever changing music collection.
We must admit, we are addicted to your panoramic illustrations. What inspires them? Do you think of using some horizon shots as basis for illustrations?
K: I think it came about entirely by accident. I just had a long piece of paper that I needed to fill up for a school project and ended up drawing the inside of our apartment. Dan liked my drawing, so he wanted to color it in. We liked the results of it so much that we decided to do another, this time choosing an outdoor location. We liked the results of working together and the format again, so we just kept going. Thus the project began.
D: We could certainly try to use the Lomo for reference shots for our panoramics, although but of the quirkiness of the images is that our reference is actually made up of lots of small shots that don’t quite line up together. This forces kozy to invented the actual perspective of the environment; she makes thee images join up in her head. This results in a unique almost fish eye look that is somewhat different from what a camera lens would give us, just in that it is imperfect. We kind of like the imperfect quality in the perspective.
Do you both work simulateously on a project, or are you more into ‘divide and conquer?’
D: It depends – there are a lot of things we do entirely on our own, with just feedback and ideas coming from the other person. WIth the panoramics (and other images done with the same technique) we are both sitting in front of the computers for hours painting away on the same image, letting the other person know which areas we are working on and joining the colored sections up occasionally until it is all finished.
How about video games? You’re working on ‘Bad Day LA’ with American McGee right? Tell us more.
K: Well American just contacted us about 2 years ago and was interested in creating a game that had the feel, the look of our panoramics. We just needed to create a few pieces in our style that were specific to the game to get the artists on the development team started and thinking in ‘kozyndan’ style. It took them a while (just because the messiness of our style is sort of counter to the structure of 3D polygonal graphics), but now the game is really starting to look amazing – they are really capturing the look of our work.
D: We look forward to playing the game again and getting to roam around our city done up in our own art style…
K: …and beat people up.
D: Yeah – and beat people up. heh heH: It is a video game after all.
Any other big kozyndan projects for us to watch in the near future?
D: We are not sure! We have so many ideas, so many possible routes and are always changing our minds. We are going to concentrate on gallery work and our own products for the next year most likely though, with shows in NYC, Melbourne and Sydney, Toronto and LA and produce some books based on the work. More panoramics will be coming shortly too!