Q1: Let’s start with the common question, if you can kindly introduce yourself.
my name is Jeff Becker and I go by DEKAL. I used to do graffiti and this was the name I used. it has stuck with me over the years and a lot of people know me as Dekal so I have kept it with me. I don’t do much graffiti anymore though. Now im all about illustration. I do a lot of work in the music industry, album covers, etc.. mostly with independent artists from Miami where I live. I also do comic and fantasy work as well and editorial work too.
Q2: How did you get into the field of your work?
well I’ve never really known anything else. I loved drawing as a child and adolescent. then when I got into college and had to pick a major, they told me to “pick what I like”. so that was a no brainer. now im here still doing what I love to do and im very thankful for that.
Q3: Do you have any current favourite artists, comic artists, photographers who may have influenced you to become the artist that you are?
there are really too many to name but ill go ahead and say a few. as far as art history, Degas is a huge inspiration for me. Marko Djurdjevic and Carlos Huante for comic and concept art.. and then Alexander McQueen is pretty astonishing for fashion design.
Q4: What are the main tools of your trade?
for commercial work its all Photoshop, and I still do a lot of digital painting for my personal work too, but I also really enjoy doing rendered pencil drawings and using soft pastels for my personal stuff.
Q5: How was it for you to learn the process of that? Did you teach yourself, take classes or learn from other existing artist’s tutorial?
I learned about oil painting when I was in school. I say “about” and not “how to” because my university’s art program wasn’t that great. then I picked up the pastels after seeing Degas. and as far as photoshop and digital painting, I learned that all on my own just by doing it and also by watching other artist’s tutorials.
Q6: Do you think its possible for you to describe the process of your art style, what are the dos and don’ts, the important aspects you set yourself to achieve your style of design?
I don’t think my process is anything special really. I might do a small thumbnail for an idea, but sometimes not. then I just start drawing and flesh out the idea as I go. I think it should just be intuitive for the artist. just make the decisions that satisfy you while your working. if you like something keep it if you don’t then change it. I think experience is the key. a lot of making the art you like is about finding out what you don’t want to do more than finding out what you do want. and just draw. everyday. and I shouldn’t even have to say that. if your not drawing everyday because of an internal force that makes you… then you should just keep it as a hobby and find another career.
Q7: What are the biggest struggles you encounter as an artist?
probably coming up with good ideas. once I have my idea the rest is pretty much laid out for me. earlier in my path, maybe drawing and anatomy or color was a struggle, but the more you work and gain experience the more mileage you acquire and things that used to be hard come easier and in return the bar is raised and a new set of challenges reveal themselves.
Q8: Do you have any other future plans that don’t involve creative art?
unfortunately I do not right now. I wish I did though.
Q9: Do you have any personal mottos, quotes or existing quotes that motivates you to do what you love doing? Can you share it with us or provide words of wisdom from your experiences for those who look up to you?
hmm. well I will say that the core of my most extreme anger and frustration and the core of my most extreme happiness and satisfaction is the same thing. my art. not sure if that is very motivating to someone coming up as an artist, but it’s the truth. that’s only me though. ive seen artists have their work flow out of them and ive also seen artists that take an incredible amount of time and energy to create their work. both with amazing results. everyone is different. I will also say that being really great at art is a lifestyle. ive seen people who can just draw great portraits or animals or whatever but that’s it. they don’t create emotional images. if you want to be a great artist, if you want your images to have that emotional impact, if you want your ideas and concepts to hit people hard… you have to live art. you have to pay attention and be observant to life. im not even saying that im a “great artist”, but I do know that what I just said, ive heard great artists say. so I try to live by that myself.
Q11: To round off the last question, where can your fans and new fans find updated news and progress from you, – Where can we find you?