MICHAEL CAIN aka Gnashing Teeth | ARTIST & CREATIVE DIRECTOR

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WHO ARE YOU AND WHAT DO YOU DO?

My name is Michael Cain (gnashing teeth) and i’m an artist and creative director currently working in Melbourne, Australia.
My artwork is derived from an love of birds, animals and nature, and my experiences with pop culture.

 

BEING THAT YOU WORK IN A CREATIVE INDUSTRY AND CREATE YOUR ART IN YOUR SPAIR TIME, IS FINDING A WORK LIFE BALANCE EVER HARD?

I think the work life balance is pretty good right now. I’m lucky that i don’t work a lot of overtime and when i do have to it’s expected.
My art originally came out of a workplace where i wasn’t getting to be as creative within my role and my art was something that i had
complete creative control with and could put my entire self into. Back then there was very little work life balance so i had to really
push to be able to get the opportunity to paint early on in my career.

 

YOU’VE STARTED DOING A LOT OF LARGE SCALE MURALS, IS THIS SOMETHING WE’RE GOING TO SEE MORE OF
IN THE FUTURE? IS IT HARD TO TRANSLATE YOUR WORK INTO A LARGE SCALE?

I love doing large scale murals and only now have i really figured out how to transfer the skills and techniques i use with my smaller works into a large scale form.
I experimented A LOT with different brushes to make sure that when you look at it no matter what the size, it’s still my art and in the end it was so easy hahaha
I’m using the same brushes that i would use if i was painting one of my smaller pieces but i use a larger version of the same brush and for me that’s what i need to do to make sure
my work still has my personality within it.

 

 

 

WHAT ROLE DOES NOSTALGIA HAVE IN YOUR WORK?

Thinking of it now it plays a big role in my work but i don’t wallow in nostalgia.
it’s more romanticising the past and looking back to my childhood and what stands out for me.
One that i continue to reference are budgies, Native to Australia where i live and something i grew up with.
And then you get to lollies and the memories i have with them growing up. I remember when Hubba Bubba
first came out with their gum tape and it blew my mind….60 feet of gum in this little compact container, it was incredible haha

My childhood is definitely my happy place and when i’m old and have dementia (knock on wood) that’s where i’ll be, hanging out with Vultron in a time when Optimus prime knew what was right.

BIGGEST PET PEEVE?

Dis-organisation

 

FAVOURITE TOY

Original G1 Optimus Prime, i still remember so vividly buying him with all the money i could scrounge together in a toy store in Geelong that’s probably not there any more. He’s a bit worse for wear now and i have a replica of it, but it’s something i don’t think i’l ever let go of.


 

YOUR PAINTINGS CAN BE QUITE ABSTRACT AND CHAOTIC AT TIMES, CAN YOU STILL MAKE MISTAKES WITHIN THIS STYLE?

Happy accidents are a good way to put it and they happen a lot with my work as I’m quite messy, picking up and throwing paint brushes and colours everywhere, so sometimes you accidentally pick up the wrong thing and go…. actually, that works.  although It starts with chaos and the process can be chaotic at times there’s always an end goal of what i want this piece to be.

WHAT’S A MOMENT IN YOUR LIFE THAT’S TAKEN YOUR BREATH AWAY?

It may not be the most exciting time in my life or the most epic but to this day i remember when my parents would drive me to the beach and drop me off at the start of the day. Surf board, wet suit and a can of baked beans to cook when i got hungry. I would spend the entire day just surfing and hanging out with my friends and it’s such a simple moment and a simple joy but it’s something i look back on with a big smile on my face.

 


Between his job as a creative director and his work as an artist it’s safe to say
Michael is an incredible creator and you should keep up with what’s he’s putting out both on
his website and instagram
Much love x  

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