Renowned Dublin street artist James Earley unveils a new limited edition bottle design as part of Jameson’s #BeOriginal campaign for St. Patrick’s Day. We caught up with the artist to talk stained glass, graffiti and design.
Who are you and what do you do?
My name is James Earley, I’m a practicing street artist based in Dublin.
How do you create your works?
I paint freehand, spray painted artworks that vary in scale from an entire hotel exterior to a 20ft x 8ft wall. Tell us more about your work and in particular this collaboration, how did it come about, talk us through the process? The limited edition Jameson bottle collaboration was a really exciting project from the get-go. Jameson contacted me in 2013 and said they were interested in working with me. When they explained what the enormity of the project, I was blown away and then very excited to get moving on a design! The initial concept period was pretty tight, so thankfully, I didn’t have too much time to procrastinate as it was a high energy, immediate and semi-intuitive process.
There were certain design parameters, such as logo placement, that remained static on the label, but everything else was up for grabs. Jameson actually encouraged me to personalise their logo and work over it, to harmonise all the graphic elements within the piece. The period of design was over the course of 6 months or so. The final rendition wasn’t a million miles from where we started. I have to say that the print finishes and production of the label was one of the most exciting elements for me. Having viewed the design on my computer screen in pixels and then to see it come to life in a tangible, 3D environment was very satisfying.
Where can we see more of your work?
My work is all over Dublin, in Belfast and also Waterford. Most works are pretty large. At least 40ft H x 30ft W, all the way up to an entire hotel. Blooms Hotel, in the centre of Dublin is the largest painted artwork in Ireland. It took me a year to produce.
My style is based around my family’s background in stained glass. There is a strong emphasis on movement and energy within my works and if there is a figurative element within an artwork its forms are illustrated using fragmented shards, reminiscent of stained glass. As well as my family’s artistic heritage, a great deal of my work references my involvement in the Irish graffiti scene for the last 20yrs and graphic design, which I have practiced for the last 15. As well as these, my Irish peers and a great deal of contemporary fine art inform my style.
What’s your dream commission?
My dream commission would be to create a set of stained glass windows for a large public space. Not a religious one! It’s something I am going to aim for, later on down the line. If I am honest, I would love to follow in my family’s creative footsteps and learn the stained glass trade and fuse it with my street art background and design sensibility.
Whose work do you currently admire – across all style and crafts?
I will be in the Old Jameson Distillery on St. Patrick’s Day printing some limited edition posters for visitors and then celebrating the limited edition bottle project with all the people I worked with along the way.
VIDEO: Jameson Limited Edition Bottle Designer James Earley.