Featured Studios

Zookraft Design

May 2014

Carl + Lara = Zookraft Design. They met at TAFE and the rest was history. Zookraft (Newcastle) run LOOK HEAR & LOOK SEE, an epic initiative to enrich the creative industry and help students get involved ! Zookraft are all about student collaborations, so read on and get around them. They have recently worked with BeastmanWBYK and  Beci Orpin just to name a few. P.S they just launched their new site, check it out for more fun times.

What is Zookraft Design? Who is involved and how did it come about?

Zookraft is a graphic design and illustration studio starring myself (Carl Morgan) and my gorgeous partner (Lara Schubert). We’ve both been drawing since forever, and have since gravitated towards the bright lights of graphic design.

We met at TAFE and continued onto University together. We found that we made a smashing team, so we decided to form ZK and bring our work to the people. Our portfolio is quite varied because we like to work in all mediums – both traditional and digital, naughty and nice. It can be difficult summarizing our work or style objectively because we approach each brief independent of the requirements and aesthetic possibilities, though we’ve always been drawn to a hand-rendered finish whether it applies to an illustration piece or a corporate design.

Prior to moving in to your new workspace, you were working from home. How has your new space influenced your work/ creative outcomes?

The problem with working from home, although advantageous for a lot of people, only turned us into sunlight-deprived, late-starting, late-finishing, coffee-guzzling monsters. Now that we’re lucky enough to have a studio to work from, the distinction between work and home is clearly defined. So much of the creative process is cognitive and can be a draining experience, therefore we find that having a physical separation from our studio means that we can allow for our concepts to gestate organically and when we’re at work we invest a more disciplined and ultimately more successful outcome. We’re still coffee-guzzling monsters though.

Look Hear and Look See are both projects of Zookraft, tell us a bit about them.

LH & LS both came about from the local student need to get engaged and involved with the creative industry. LOOK HEARis fundamentally a facilitator of creative events, which has grown to encompass presentations, workshops our exhibition Look See and now the street art festival Hit The Bricks. The aim of LH is to enrich our creative culture, nurture people entering the field and hopefully be a fun ride.

Look See invites the movers and shakers from art and design to exhibit work and we invite the public to submit pieces too, so that we give up-and-comers the platform to promote their work and exhibit beside some of the best contemporary creatives around. Win win!

Any advice for graduates/ students/ emerging artists who want to get involved in your projects?

We’re always on the lookout for people who would like to get involved – shoot us an email! ([email protected])

Who have been your top 5 artists, designers to work with and why?

Geez – everyone that we’ve worked with have been absolute legends, and the local pool of creative people here in Newcastle are stellar, consistently keeping the design scene a great one to be a part of. The 5 creatives I’ve had the pleasure of working with who have been an inspiration are:
Ken Taylor – A hard worker, a true craftsman and a real gentleman. World-class illustration.
Brad Eastman (Beastman)– One of our first presenters and always puts in his best.
Sonny and Biddy (WBYK) – Graphic powerhouse team who keep upping the ante. Testament to design and illustration pairing that never becomes stale.
Heath Killen – Super smart with fantastic design skills – he’s helped me to increase my awareness of thoughtful design that steps beyond aesthetics.
Bec Winnel– Beyond her honed skills, Bec is consistently developing as an artist – a great role-model for all inspiring artists.
Beci Orpin – A great person who proves that designers don’t have to stick to one medium.
That’s six, couldn’t be helped!

What’s on the cards for Zookraft in the next few years?

We’re fortunate enough to be in an industry that has limited boundaries as far as creating new opportunities is concerned. We’ve never believed that there is a need to resign yourself to being active in one field alone, and as we’re interested in the broader picture of image-making and visual communication, I’d like to think that the whole design career path is one of taking on new projects and creating new opportunities to develop our skills and hopefully others as well. Of course we’ll continue to draw, design and put on events until our parents understand what we do. And if that fails, we might try our hand at Ostrich farming.

Instagram: @zookraft @look_hear


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