Tuesday, May 6, 2014

AdamMaleBlog Exclusive: An Interview With Artist/Illustrator Jorden

While dorking around on the internet one day, I happened across a tumblr page full of the most insanely realistic and amazing portraits and illustrations I have ever seen. The artist, who goes solely by the name Jorden, didn't stop there. His site was full of superheroes, hilariously re-imagined cartoon characters, sophisticated, touching animal and landscape art, and so much more. One amazing piece after another.

I had to know more. So, I wrote him, begging for an interview. And, the information he shared with me, was way more profound than I ever imagined.

Jorden lives in Hamburg, Germany. He moved there from his home country of Iran when he was 16, roughly nine years ago. Jorden's day job is with an advertising agency. Though trained in Communication Design, he credits his father for his artistic talent.
I have inherited my talent from my father. My older brother is specialized in technical drawing and my older sister made many Mickey Mouse drawings. My father paints with oil. My mother on the other hand can't make a straight line (hehehe).
When I was a child I always wanted to specialize in one area. The bad thing is that the big comic heroes and figures haven't been popular or have been forbidden in Iran. But I still can remember that my first drawing was the Pink Panther with a mosque in the background. That's the way how I have started to interest in comics. Sailor Moon, Captain America, The Turtles and Batman have been a great inspiration for me.
Jorden is currently working on a graphic novel called In The Sign Orchids. From the art he has shared thus far, it looks fairly stunning. Also, Jorden keeps fairly busy doing special order portraits and illustrations. I am just thankful he took a bit of time of his schedule to answer some questions.

Q: What can you tell us about In the Sign Orchids? The preview art looks amazing! When is it out?
Jorden: There are two things I really don't like. First, why does the superhero always rescue the humans, and why does that always happen in a city? Second, why do gay comic artists only draw gay porn? I am absolutely sure that the gay world can talk about much more things and not only about sex. I love the nature and I was raised to respect and cherish all creatures. And yes, I love superheroes. I want to tell a story which is about the value of life, about friendship, love, environment and boldness. In my comic there will be a gay love and this love should sensitize the people for our environment. Of course, there will be action, love, and drama. I don't know when all this is going to be published because I want to take my time.

Q: What other comics have you done in the past?
Jorden: I have made a comic called Everyday. It's about 5 gay boys who are really different. I wanted to reach as many people as possible.

Q: Your ability to realistically illustrate people is astonishing. When did you discover you were good at portraits?
Jorden: I wanted to volunteer in a animal shelter but I didn't know how to do that. I don't have enough money to donate or enough time. I take care for three dogs. The only thing I am good at is drawing! On Facebook, I have started to draw people in comic style to get money for that. The demand was huge and I was really surprised. I have never imagined that.

Q: A good portion of your work involves amazing superhero art. What comics/graphic novels have stuck with you from your childhood/teen years?
Jorden: When I was young I liked Batman. Sailor Moon shaped me a lot. Many people don't know how revolutionary Sailor Moon was. Sailor Moon was our time far ahead. It was a series for kids and talking about subjects like gay/lesbian love, transsexualism, love and death. Come on, we are talking about the 90's!!! Where can you find this now? Every child who missed Sailor Moon, have lost a part of childhood.

Q: With your abilities, it would seem you could work anywhere you want. What is your dream job?
Jorden: It sounds more like a beautiful dream! There are so many remarkable artists. My dream is to work on a video game, as a character designer.

Q: A lot of your art is of big, strapping, bearded men! Do you have a thing for muscle bears?
Jorden: Heheh ....Yes, I have! I love men who are manly, with beard, big and muscled. I have met such a man because of my art. ;)

Q:  I love the work you did to show support for the LGBTQ community in Russia. Have you experienced any homophobia living in Germany? What is the overall climate towards gays in Europe?
Jorden: Well, I just don't want to draw only sexy guys. I want to say with a picture: Here I am! Gay
and proud! In my original country, it's sadly not accepted. There have been big affairs in Iran, which made me really sad and thoughtful. What's going on in Russia right now is not acceptable at all. Sometimes pictures tell more than 1000 words. Germany is really open for gay people. I have not experienced any problems and I don't need to hide.

Q: The Sailor Moon bear is hilarious! Did that idea just come to you in a flash of genius?
Jorden: Hehehe ... those funny pictures happen while I am on the phone, I just draw something. ;)

Q: Mario…or Link? Who would win in a fight?
Jorden: Hmmm, that's easy, Link! Everyone who played Zelda knows exactly how many hearts Link has, while Mario has only one life with a mushroom ;)

Click any pic to enlarge!

Find Jorden on Tumblr, Facebook, and Instagram!

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