Photo by Jon Dragonette
My childhood friend growing up -reminds me of Alex Pardee. Sure he looked like him but, he was a genius, he oozed creativity, he was two years younger than me –yet he was the one teaching me shit.
My childhood bestfriends have a truely weird way of popping in and out of my life. My other childhood friend who went into the airforce, randomly stopped by my parents house years a few ago and we caught up that evening. He told me about his life in the AF, various STDs he got, and sadly that’s all I remember, the STDs. We lost right back out of touch after that encounter.
And sadly, the last place I saw my friend that reminded me of Alex Pardee, was in a lame mall parking lot. He had grown a full beard, and still had the razor-sharp sense of humor. Since then, I think he is lost somewhere in Canada, taking countless greyhound bus-rides going after one form or another of Canadian poontang.
So, what do you get if you took Canadian poontang, a Paul Bunyan beard, a few STDs, a genius, a canvas, and threw all of that fantastical shit together in the form of artwork? You get some really wicked Alex Pardee -ishh…and by STD I mean SuperfragilisTicexpialiDopeshit!
For Alex’ wikibio go here. He’s illustrated The Used‘s album art, he’s working on the forthcoming Cage full length album’s art, has an animated project with WarnerBros, and represents a couple artist collectives Cardboard City, and Zero friends.
“Alex Pardee’s unique style is one conceived through watching years of horror movies, writing graffiti, and listening to gangster rap. His work best represents that of a circus sideshow cemetery. Final pieces are often brought to life by translating random shapes and colors into signs of torment and absurdity. By juxtaposing these two conflicting moods, Alex makes his works more personal to his viewers, forcing them to project their own feelings and emotions onto each character in his twisted universe.”-Wikipedia.
Alex Pardee, folks.
Shabooty: What was being on the set of Transformers like?
Alex Pardee: Probably exactly how you can imagine it. Fucking amazing. There were miles of fences around this large airplane hangar (that I later found out was used by Howard Hughes) and as soon as we walked in my head was just cocked back and I was staring up the entire time at this ridiculously detailed set. We were in the Hoover dam set and Shia [Laboeuf] like basically made us close our eyes as we walked into the middle of the floor and then when we opened our eyes we saw these 50 foot tall robotic legs covered in ice. It was fucking Megatron and it was insane. Cage, my friend Jeph and I were geeking out so much it was stupid. We got to see all of the cars and play around in the library that they just blew up, it was retarded. I doubt I’ll do something that cool ever again. Shia’s the man.
What’s the most $ an original piece of yours has sold for?
I sold this six foot deformed woman mannequin sculpture with a trapezoid head that I made for 7 grand, which was crazy, but I’m usually pretty affordable.
Do you have a single favorite piece that you’re the most proud of?
Escaped Convict(ion) is my favorite of my recent work I think. I came up with the concept when I was working with a band, and they loved the concept, but when I finished the art, they changed their mind and wanted to tone down the violence and start over with a different concept, which is was kinda bummed about at first, but the final art turned out cool, and I ended up using the Escaped Convict(ion) piece for my own shit and got prints made and sold out of all 200 prints. So it worked out better for me in the long run and everyone was happy.
What’s the status on the cover of Cage’s next album Depart From Me? Tell us as much as you’re allowed to about the concept.
Now that gays can get married, Cage and I ran out and got married, and now if I tell you anything he’ll probably divorce me and get half of my 40 bucks. Fucker.
We’ve worked on a few different concepts, but the album itself keeps taking on a new life while he’s tracking it and writing, so we are going to keep fleshing out the visuals until its right. I would like this album to be the dopest shit I’ve ever done. I’ve been a Cage fan and friend for years so now to finally get a chance to do one of his full-lengths is exciting as shit.
Even when you were in kindergarten, were you the bomb-ass doodler?
I don’t really remember, I drew all the time, but I don’t think I was ever considered good at anything when I was younger.
Are you good at the etch-a-sketch?
Nope. I suck.
Are those portrait / caricatures that you see people doing at mall kiosks -at all your forte?
Nope. They suck.
Have you met Jeremy Fish? What you think of his artwork?
Nope. He sucks. Nah, just kidding, Jeremy is fucking rad. I have met him a bunch of times and he is one of the most generous, amazing characters in the art world. And his work is perfect. I admire anyone that can create a universe that represents their mind, and I think Jeremy has done that tenfold. We are working on a collab for a skateboard right now for his Superfishal line.
Who are your favorite musicians?
Cage, Aes, Yak, El, and all of the CCWM fam. The Gurp City guys like TOPR, Z-Man, Luke Sick and Conceit are amazing. That new Portishead album is pretty dope. I don’t know, my fav groups of all time are probably Wu Tang and At the Drive In.
Alex Pardee Show At 181 Martel, Music by Cage feat. Daryl Palumbo “Shoot Frank”
Would you feel awkward drawing a male nude model?
Nah, I feel better about that, cuz males are all ugly and disproportionate, so I can draw shitty and it looks ok. A lot of women models are flawless, so they are boring to draw.
Talk about the [Warner Bros.] 3-D Chadam feature movie. And how big of a budget is this project?
The budget is small in comparison to like any other Warner Bros project, but everyone on the project (me included) are doing it out of love for the property and the story and everything, so we are doing this really small budgeted project and trying to make it look like it was millions of dollars. I think we are succeeding, it looks amazing. Its gonna blow some people away, we have an insanely awesome villain. Seriously. He’s rad.
How’d you get hooked up with The Used, to do their album covers?
Their guitarist, Quinn, found my website from a friend of his and just showed it to the band and they all liked my stuff, so they called me up. The following week I was working for them.
When will we be seeing an Alex Pardee shoe and an Alex Pardee Newera hat?
I have shoes coming out soon, but I cant release any info about what company, and I already have a couple of New Eras out, which I think you can still get through Upper Playground.
Painting hours on end, do you ever accidentally get high off the fumes?
Yah, I used to have a small studio and I would sleep in the same room as all these open toxic wood stains, and it fucked up my sinuses really bad. I had to get surgery. And if shitting a lot means I am high, then, yah, I get high a lot from paint.
Which facet of work has been your most commercially viable?
Record covers, for sure.
Have you ever been hours into a work and gotten frustrated and ruined it? (I guess the cliche would be taking a can of paint and pouring it all over -like in the intro of In Living Color).
Yah, that happens more frequently than it should. Less now because of deadlines, I just have to figure out how to fix it. But I’ve ruined a ton of shit. But destroying it isn’t ruining it if it sucks. Its saving everyone else from looking at it.
What nicknames do you go by?
Dickfart the Annihilator. Poot. SexyFuckFace. So many.
How’d you get hooked up with Chris Palko [Cage]?
Kinda through myspace a few years ago, but then simultaneously I had become friends with Katie (Cupcake) and some other mutual friends who had known him already, and just became friends. I was a huge Cage fan for years so it was kinda surreal for me to form a friendship with him.
If Hanna Montana wanted you to do the artwork for her next DVD would you?
Nah, I’m over it. I got fired from Leann Rimes years ago. I highly doubt Miley’s “people” could handle me.
Does ur girlfriend ever make you do annoying art projects? like, “Hey Alex, can you draw me a picture of LC from The Hills”?
Nah, she’s good.
What’s your favorite color?
How much of your work is done in adobe photoshop?
Gallery stuff is all paints, dyes, inks, shit, ketchup, whatever. Stuff that I do that is going to get reproduced, like posters or cd’s or whatever, usually I do a mixture of both because with layers in photoshop, it allows for a lot more specific editing if a client hates something.
So, name all of the albums that you’ve created the covers for…[pics here].
Cage’s Dvd, “Hell’s Winter”, Cage’s “Shoot Frank” single cover. The Used “In Love and Death” & “Lies for the Liars”. I just did In Flames’ “A Sense of Purpose”. Aiden “Conviction”, TOPR’s “Cheap Laughs” & “Marathon of Shame”, Street Drum Corps’ “Self titled” & “We are Machines”. A shitload of singles and DVDs for the Used and In Flames. I think that’s most of them. I did some stuff for Existereo from the Shapeshifters a while ago.
Do you still do any spraypaint/graffiti/tagging?
When I can. My best friends are still very active, so I am still around it. I would want to get back into it more but its just a time thing. I don’t even have time to watch a whole episode of Aqua teen. I have to fast forward it, and its only 15 minutes long.
What A.Pardee projects are upcoming that you can announce?
The CHADAM movie will be out around September this year. That and Cage’s album are the only 2 things I am focusing on right now.
You’re mostly sleep deprived right, but do you ever remember your dreams, and use that as inspiration for an art piece? And do you have a pen and pad by your side to write down what you dreamt?
I see so much shit in my head all day when I’m awake that my dreams are extremely boring.
Were you a big fan of the Faces of Death videos?
I was fascinated by them when I was younger because I couldn’t believe they were real and it felt so weird watching them. Then I found out they were fake and in some weird sick way I was disappointed that I didn’t really watch people die.
Wait –they’re fake?! Wtf. I didn’t know.