Nov 17, 2009
Interview – Ray Robinson III
[Ray Robinson III (Three) is the founder of the Gold Coin brand and the artist behind the Stick Up! resin figure dropping this Friday (11.20)from Argonaut Resins. We wanted to know more about Ray, Gold Coin and Stick Up! so we fired of some questions. Enjoy the interview behind-the-scenes making-of pics. ]
Q: Hi Ray. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and your art/design background?
First off let me say thanks for having me! It's an honor. I'm an artist / designer / graffiti writer based out of San Francisco. I started drawing at a young age. Initially I drew a lot of inspiration from comics and video game art. For years I drew nothing but. Then in middle school I gravitated towards graffiti. I not only enjoyed the study of letters but the characters as well. Over time I just tried to consistently up my skills in character development area. As I got older I started to get into doing art as a profession with graphic design. After a few years of random work for hire I then decide to start my own label called GOLD COIN. That's basically what most of my creative efforts go towards now.
Q: For those that don't follow lifestyle apparel, can you shed some light on Gold Coin ?
GOLD COIN is a label I started about 3 years ago. It started out as a creative outlet for my work. At first I didn't really know how to go about getting my art out there so I started GC as a means of a release for it. I design all the products myself from start to finish. We make all kinds of random goods but there is a big focus on clothing. I have been making clothes for myself since I was younger so it only made sense for me to mix the two, clothing & art. Every season I try to expand the line a bit as well. This season for example, Stick Up! will be our first toy release.
Q: How did you decide to do an art toy? Are you a big toy collector ?
Since the beginning of GC I had always wanted to make toys. We just never really had the means to do it. I have always been a big toy collector as well so I knew one day it would have to happen. Then last year I saw END's work from Argo, we linked up and boom!
Q: What's Stick Up!'s story ? In addition to the robbery angle, the heart shaped body with the inner eye indicates a deeper message beneath the surface.
Stick Up! started off as a t-shirt design. Actually, besides the robbery angle I never really created him with anything "deep" in mind. After the tee released though I did get a lot of feedback from folks about it. I guess it had a deep meaning to some folks whether I intended it to or not. When I created him he was just supposed to be exactly what he is on the surface, a heart robber. I do think it's cool that his design has hit some people on a deeper level though.
Q: Stick Up! is pushing the resin game forward with bendy limbs. Where did that idea come from and was it a challenge for Argonaut Resins to pull off ?
When END [ed: Eric Nocella Diaz (Argonaut Resins)] and I started talking we both wanted something that was going to be next level. At first I thought, ok, let's do something really big (size wise) then. I showed him the Stick Up! tee design and he really liked it .He mentioned that we did have a problem though with the thin legs and arms. They wouldn't be strong enough to hold up the big heart body. I then came up with the idea to do these bendy limbs but we didn't know if it would work at first. So I put together some bendy pieces and sent them off to END. He tested them, they worked and we decided to give it a go. At that point we still didn't really know how the final product would turn out but once I saw the final sculpt I was blown away. It worked perfectly. END hit the nail dead on the head with the sculpt as well. It was like the character had popped right off the tee. The overall process has taken a lot longer than we expected though. We started last January so it's almost been a year now.
Q: What's next for you ? Any plans for additional art toys ?
We have a lot of cool projects coming up in the future. Can't give them all away but more toys are a definite. I also have been stepping out of the GC box lately and doing some art showings so there will be more of those coming as well.
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