Tell us a bit about yourself!
My name is Jacob Lumsdaine, 21 yr old creative practitioner hailing from Sydney’s northern beaches. I work predominately across graphic design, photography and video.
What drew you to these practices?
At school I was always into art, and I really enjoyed a lot of different mediums, whether that be drawing, painting, photography, multimedia etc. however I continually found myself drawn to computer based design, and felt like it was a good thing to study at uni because in a sense it was practicing art, but it felt like it had a greater purpose. As for photography I was always taking photos of my friends and stuff and I guess I really enjoyed to process, and as I learned more about it and got deeper in to cameras and techniques it really gave me creative inspiration.
Do you think it is the creative practitioners responsibility to be conscious of ethical art making?
Absolutely, I think if artists were not conscious of the choices they are making in response to ethical decisions, they wouldn’t even be understanding their own works, thus are kind of missing the point of creating it in the first place. Personally I find it hard to separate original ideas from things I have seen online or in magazines etc. As I constantly finding myself drawing inspiration from the things around me. So just always making sure that the things I am creating (mainly in graphic design) are very much my own and not just like things i’ve soon online. I see it a lot at uni, and it becomes very recognisable when you are personally aware of the online design trends. I don’t think people do it consciously, but inherently its a part of the area that kind of sucks.
What are some tips that you have for other creatives to practice ethical art-making?
Just really making sure that the works you are creating aren’t directly appropriating or ripping off stuff that you like, and have seen before. Its amazing to find inspiration, as designers cant work in bubbles but draw from it and create it in your own way, but I usually find works a best created when they can reference a range of different sources, most of which are not visual at all.
How does culture interplay into your practice?
Predominantly I haven’t really used my heritage in my practice, as I it has much been focused on the now, and the things that are directly around me – so yes the beach culture I am continually drawn to, and kind of this teenage/ young adult ideals in the 21st century, but I don’t think I’ve ever really challenged anything on a deep level. However I am starting to explore ideas of Australia’s cultural identity, in relation to ideas of nostalgia and our place in the world, and I think this will start to become a motivator throughout my works over the next few years.
What are your thoughts on cultural appropriation?
I think Cultural appropriation is a real grey area especially in art and design because again people not being aware that what they are doing is actually wrong, and its really hard to define what is and what isn’t considered appropriation. Personally I just try to be as best informed as I can about certain areas relating to my work, and make sure my work isn’t going to be offensive in the way of people cultures and heritage
What are your thoughts on cultural appropriation in the fashion industry and creative fields?
Its really prevalent at the moment, especially in fashion. People see things from different cultures and think it looks cool or stylish etc. and use it for show or economic advantage, which can be really hurtful to these traditions and cultures that place deep significance in these motifs. I think its easy to see why people do it, especially if they really aren’t aware or educated on what they are actually doing, but yeah I’m against it, especially if it is for the sole purpose of economic prosperity
Check out more of Jacobs essential work @yokscobar
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