Cycling encompasses a lot in common with art. Matt Rudd from the Let’s Ride team takes a glance at this relationship between riding and creating, and shares a number of his favorite work by artists who cycle.
At its best, cycling is about freedom. Colour. Connection. And what a machine! The common pedaling.info single speed bike is arguably the best and most economically designed invention ever, so unsurprising that it quickly moved from a functional mode of transport to a desirable, even beautiful object.
Art, of course, draws on similar themes – there are some guidelines but artists are liberated to break them. There’s an endless color to settle on from. You’re absolved to choose your level, decide what proportion you spend on equipment and make of it want you to wish to form of it!
Shan Jiang’s website states: ‘behind every nice thing, there’s some reasonably suffering’. That usually rings true for a motorcycle ride – spectacular hold payoff for the pain within the legs on the climb up!
The artistic process
Shan very kindly took the time to answer some questions, and generously showed me his process for every piece – from blank paper through to intricate final image.
Shan started each cover by making a hand-drawn sketch, using a pencil or pen for the road art. This was then scanned into the pc and therefore the vibrant color was added. Andrew would give a thought of the sort of bikes he wanted to feature on the new cover, then Shan would research the bikes, come up with the ideas and so figure out a rough sketch to remand. Once everyone was happy, Shan would then spend one or a time period to hold out the ultimate illustration, betting on the complexity.
I asked Shan how cycling within the UK compared to cycling in his native Shangai. He reinforced the image I already had of Chinese streets stuffed with cyclists and said that despite the continuing growth in popularity within the UK, there have been a good deal more bikes within the streets and more bike lanes around the city, even going back twenty years to when he was last in Shangai. Shan described to me the frenzy of riding as a part of a crowd of cyclists:
“When I rode with such a large amount of others, it absolutely was a special feeling than riding almost alone in UK. After I recall the scene, it had been almost like i used to be during a bike parade.”
Last in my selection is Kate Moross – another precocious talent, with output already sufficiently big to form many another veteran blush! After putting in place her own record label, directing music videos, and applying her distinctive hand-drawn typographic style to a who’s-who list of massive clients. I reckon it’s working, together with her Studio Moross collective having an enormous hand within the artwork for many big shows and festivals. It really gets across the sensation behind that rare cycling occasion when soaking is worth celebrating.
Those are just some of my favorites, showing that art and cycling truly have loads in common. They both allow you to be yourself, and pay little or no attention to the perceived rules while you go (I’m not talking about the code here folks, you ought to always follow that!). Both give you the liberty to create what you would like to create.
Cycling, like art, is often a heavy business, but remember that you simply can choose for yourself. Challenge yourself to travel faster or further using the newest cycling technology; or accept a mild roll through your local park on a trusted, rusted Old Faithful when the sun comes out.
It’s up to you – you’ll even create some cycling art once you get back!