“Eric Elms Gets Lost in the Crowd”


Dazed Digital recently put out an article on artist Eric Elms where Elms discusses the impact of the internet on today’s generation, his mentor Shepard Fairey and what he’s focusing on now.

Elms has designed for Supreme, Nike, UNDFTD, Stussy (Recently Stussy DC), as well as many others.

Check the entire article on the flipside or at Dazed Digital.

Stussy DC Artwork
Stussy Dc

By: Anita Bhagwandas

Though noticeably perturbed by the caustic NY summer – “It’s just too hot right now!” – illustrator Eric Elms is keen to talk about his recent show at Colette in Paris. “It went really well. You really get the opportunity to shape the entire space and tell a story in a solo show. A show is much more of a reflection of me and more personal than my design work.”

From art school poster boy to street wear graphic maestro, Elms cuts a fascinating figure. Having designed for Stussy, Supreme and Nike to name but a few, his work is incredibly multi-layered: “I love pictures of big crowds at concerts, marches and riots,” he says. “There is something fascinating about them visually and culturally.”

Elms studied at the prestigious Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, but isn’t haughty about his formidable training. “In the end a lot of art schools are the same. No one cares where, or if, you went to school. I think a lot of people who think they’re artists take a lot of liberties with the work that they make. Not in a good way. Drawing something on the computer that should be drawn by hand ends up making everything look the same. The internet probably is the biggest influence on how lazy kids are. No one really digs deep for their references anymore. You can practically see the one or two steps that a lot of designers took to their final piece.” Still, the internet isn’t all bad. “Your work can take on a life of its own and end up speaking for itself. I’ve met a lot of great people who I still work with today.”

These include graffiti king Shepard Fairey, Elms’ early mentor. “Shepard was my first introduction to doing something creative as a profession. I used to screen print his posters in his garage for my summer job, so it really go me into making things and doing something tangible. I used to skate when I was young so I was really into the visual aspects of skateboarding. The juxtaposition of growing up in California and living in New York affects a lot of what I do today.”

In 2008, Elms is focused on expanding his colossal empire. “I’m concentrating on projects that I really care about and a lot of personal work for the next few months. I may try to get a new studio and put together work for a big sculpture show. Maybe work on some books and jewellery. Who knows?”


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