Self-realization is something many people long for, and we find those very lucky who can turn their hobby into their work. Surrealist artist/graphic designer Dániel Taylor seems to have it all: he decided to become a full-time artist when he was only 14, and he already has an impressive resume with Adobe on top of his client list.
How did your career kick-off?
At the age of 14 I considered art as my hobby, making mainly graphite drawings with a basic knowledge of Photoshop. The first time I tried my hand at graphic design was when I was around 16-17, but only for a shorter period of time. Then, in 2015 I decided that I will try to live off it, and I tried my hardest to achieve this dream. In one year I made 250 artworks. I was lucky, because I gained recognition abroad in a relatively short amount of time, and this is why I could become a full-time artist. I am a self-taught artist, I practised a lot, and I know that there’s no faster way.
Other than self-education, what do you think is the most important?
You shouldn’t stick to one style and the same tools, because then you won’t make progress. I only learned to use 3D programs around 2 years ago, and it has been one of my best decisions so far. It’s a huge help in making my designs more professional. A website that I would recommend anyone trying is Skillshare, which is quite cheap, because it offers plenty of useful content for everyone. If you are like me and prefer books to sitting in front of the PC, get yourself a good book. It’s important to choose something that focuses on a specific area of art, this way you can deepen your knowledge more on a given topic.
How can one stand out?
Do not try to completely copy your favourite artists’ style. Pick 1-2 ideas from different artists and create your own. I often come across art pieces that have nothing unique about them. From time to time I also get comments like “This picture reminds me of XY’s artwork”, which can be a compliment, but sometimes it also signs that you should turn to a different artistic direction. I usually take it as a compliment, considering that nowadays it is very hard to come up with something brand new. So, when people tell me that my work reminds them to Moebius, I am very happy to be compared to him, because he is one of my favourite artists.
What are you the most proud of?
Last year Adobe contacted me and I made an artwork for their “Adobe MAX” event. For my big surprise, it was showcased right next to Flóra Borsi’s (an award-winning Hungarian photographer – ed.) photo art. Adobe was my biggest client so far, and I was very happy to work for them because I’ve been using their software for 12 years. It was a huge acknowledgement for my work.
Where can we see your art pieces?
In magazines, PC game covers, sometimes at exhibitions, and a few other places of which I can’t talk about now. The foreign audience is a lot more open, in Hungary I am not that well-known and I am sure that many people that I know have no idea about what I do exactly. They only see my weird pictures that I upload to Instagram. Last year I started making alternative movie posters and a company contacted me with the idea of cooperation. I was glad to work with them and I hope to get the opportunity again in the future, because it was awesome to see my art printed in such good quality.
What would you advice to those who would follow in your footsteps?
Don’t expect to be successful overnight, because the process is long until you reach a level where you can compete with others. Don’t compare yourself to artists better than you, at least not in a way that you only look at why you aren’t as good as them. They have more experience, it takes years to catch up. Be inspired by them, because you can reach the same level.
Get to know more about Dániel’s work, check out his website and follow him on Instagram!