Friday, 9 May 2014

Mr Manok Interview

Tell us about yourself and what you do?
Well, I create art under the moniker Mr Manok. I like to dabble in a lot of different mediums, I never really like to stay still, I make stickers, posters, I do traditional art, digital art, t-shirts. I made a resin toy one time; that was cool! I just like to do a lot of different things and try everything out to see what I do and don’t like.

How did you get your start?
My start-start? My real start? Happened in 2010, I entered this t-shirt competition that my friend sent to me. They really liked my design, but in the end they chose this really wack design. The design was really shit and it won. They just ended up printed mine anyway, and I didn’t even know any better cause I was 16. I was like ‘Oh my god, they’re gonna print my shirt!’ But in the end they just gave me two of my designs and that was it, they sold the rest. So I wrote an email, I was like “Why you tryin’ to step on the little fishes?! I’m only 16 and still in high school! You takin’ advantage of my stupidness!”

But from there, I just kept winning, at school I kept getting all the high grades. I was very competitive in the art world there. My teachers just kept asking me if I had anything online, ‘cause people were like ‘I wanna see your stuff’ and I’m like, ‘I can’t show you!’ So then I made a Facebook page, and then I found out about Art not Apart and went to that. I met Juliette Dudley, and I was also in a class with Ash Peak, which was pretty cool. Then I was like ‘Oh my god, what is this Us Folk thing?’ And then I went to the exhibition!

Oh my god I’m really ADHD with this interview!
I went to the Us Folk exhibition; that was the first time I was in a real-real exhibition, one that I didn’t have to pay to be in. After that Juliette gave my name to the people at La De Da, so I did an art battle there. That’s how I kinda stuck my foot in the Canberra art community, ‘cause I met Sancho.. Eeeee! And then Voir, and Eugene, and that was pretty rad. And then it kinda grew from there.
I was like, ‘man! I need to do more shit!’ so then I just started doing more shit! I was like ‘I really need to pick up my game!’ and then I’ve just picked up my game! Picked up the ball and just running with the ball. Run Forrest Run!

So what’s the story behind your name?
I’m Filipino, but I don’t speak Tagalog; I only know some basic words. Manok was one of them. I know like ten Filipino words, Manok was my favourite because it meant chicken. I thought Mr Chicken was really funny; only the Filipino people would be like, ‘oh that’s Mr Chicken! Ha ha, Mr Chicken!’ and now it’s just, stuck with me forever! I can’t ever change it! I just thought it was funny... And everyone thinks I’m a boy.. I think I Catfish a lot of women on Facebook. Cause it says Mr and I’m like ‘Oh my goddd, I’m Catfishing all these womennn!’

I feel like people are the same with Sancho
Yeah! Cause Sancho’s a dude’s name!  Yeah! Cause I mean, I was also scared as well, that people would be mean to me if I used my girl name, ‘cause all my characters are really retarded. So like, me going under a different name gives me the ability to do whatever the hell I want. Like I can draw weird ass nips and shit like that.

Where do you get your inspiration?
Umm, cartoons, Pokemon. Other artist with similar styles, 123 Klan, everyone in the Weird Crew, Sheryo, the Yok, Canberra artists…

Which Canberra artists?
All of them!

But which are you’re favourites?!
Awhh, I’m gonna say Sancho. Hehe! Sancho. I like Sancho. I like Voir. I like Houl- I don’t want to miss anyone! I’m scared I’m gonna miss someone, so just put all of them! Just say all of them- cause, it just keeps me going, to be like, ‘oh they’ve put something out, now I have to put something out’. So that’s what inspires me. And.. VINYL TOYS! I like vinyl toys! And toys, and anything like that! I like ice cream. I like, I like, lollies! I like bright colours. And nipples. Just everything that’s funny to me! I like weird stuff…

What's next for Mr Manok?
I don’t know, I wanna do a branch apparel, like, do some trill wear, put my designs on clothing so I can wear it. I’m always like, ‘man I wish I had some, crazy ass, candy coloured clothing!’ I can’t find any anywhere. I think it’d be really cool if I just make my own.

Where can we find more of your work?
I’ve got a website, Facebook page, also have Instagram, but I hate Instagram!