To discover the next big artist, we reviewed a wealth of submissions and put forth multiple rounds of contenders to public vote. In the final round, three talented finalists were presented to a panel of art world judges who selected one winner. We are pleased to introduce you to Jack Hardwicke, a UK-based photographer specializing in abstract works that are sure to add a punch of color to any collection.
What made you want to become an artist?
I'm still finding it hard to adjust to that as an appropriate title for me. I was never at all arty in my childhood so it seems strange still to be called an artist. After breaking up with my long time girlfriend two years ago I decided to find a new hobby. I picked up a camera and it turned out to be one of the best and most rewarding decisions I've ever made. I don't think I ever thought ''Oh I want to be an artist now'' I just take photographs, I enjoy it and I'm continuously trying to do new things and make art that I am proud of.
Where do you look for inspiration? How do you get your creative juices flowing?
There's so much to see and experience wherever you are. Tumblr is a great place to overload the senses and I regularly scroll through my dash looking for something interesting. Though generally I don't tend to actively seek out inspiration, it normally finds me. It could be music, people, a beautiful face, nature, a sound, architecture, inspiration can come from anything and anywhere. I just try to keep my eyes and my mind open and active.
What do you hope other people get out of your art?
How somebody reacts to my work is completely personal, I would rather leave it that way and not try to influence how somebody see's or feels about a piece. Any kind of reaction is good though for sure. If my work inspires a few people to create along the way, then brilliant.
What's your favorite thing you've ever made?
In terms of my work probably a couple of pieces that stand out. It's hard to get away from your most recent work in terms of quality I usually feel happiest with the work I've just done, but there are a couple of pieces that I love for nostalgic reasons. One of my early pieces called 'Come Sit With Me' that was taken in an old car repair joint outside of Venice, Italy, is a particular favourite as it was the first time I saw a photograph that I had taken and was a little moved. It was then that I really realised I wanted to find a way to be involved with photography for the foreseeable future. Another one would be 'A Colourfull Bliss Beyond this World'—to me it's an optimistic image but with a strong element of anxiety and I love the way it looks, it perfectly reflected the mental state I was in when I made it. It's probably the one piece of my own work that I actually look at time and time again.
What would you be doing if you weren't an artist?
Pretty much what I'm doing now—working 9 to 5 and worrying about a lifetime of mediocrity.
What is indispensable in your studio?
Who is your favorite artist (living or historical)?
Bob Dylan—everything about the man is pure genius.
What is your favorite place to see art?
When I can, and especially when traveling, I try to visit art galleries, exhibitions, and museums. I wouldn't say I have a favourite place but I have been to some wonderful places. The Museum of Modern Art in Luxembourg City, the fluorescent light museum (Electric Ladyland) in Amsterdam and the basement portion of the Museum of Modern Art Ljubljana are three that spring to mind.
If you could get any artist to do your portrait, who would you choose?
Could I get Bob Dylan to do a lyrical portrait? To be honest I don't really want anybody drawing me. Or perhaps Banksy could stencil my face all over the world.