What did you grow up wanting to be?
When did you know that this is what you wanted to do for a living?
Jr. College. I was a music major but I switched to art because learning all those keys and scales didnвЂ™t interest me. I wanted to start creating and have a little more freedom right away. I was still playing in a punk band though right up until 3 years ago. Music is still a very important part of my life.
What is your definition of вЂњgood artвЂќ?
IвЂ™m really not one to judge. If someone can feel something while looking at a painting then itвЂ™s good.
What is your artistic process, from concept to actual finished painting?
IвЂ™ll do really rough sketches on whatever paper is laying around or in my sketchbook. Then IвЂ™ll do a tighter sketch and then scan it into the computer to enlarge it to the size IвЂ™ll be painting it at. I have to tile it on the bigger paintings. I transfer it onto wood or canvas thatвЂ™s been prepped with gesso. After I transfer it IвЂ™ll lay a wash of sienna or umber. Then IвЂll begin to paint from background to foreground usually.
Can you explain how you developed your style of painting?
I love watching old cartoons like Tom and Jerry or Disney. In school I always loved telling a story in my work so it became par of my style.
Who and what influences the way you paint and also the subject material?
I love dramatic lighting. I guess thatвЂ™s why IвЂ™m drawn to Edward Hopper. Jan Van Eyck,, and Peter Bruegel are a few other artists I admire.
Many of your pieces can be found darkly humorous.
Along with the humor is there a deeper commentary on society? No. I just like telling a story about the good, the bad,. and the ugly. That would make a great name for a movie wouldnвЂ™t it?
The вЂњbad boyвЂќ image is inherent in a lot of your pieces. Can you explain that fascination?
I played in a punk band here in the South Bay (L.A. not northern California) for 10 years. I was exposed to some very interesting
characters. Some were friends and some were not. TheyвЂ™d get in fights, steal stuff, do drugs. ItвЂ™s funny because you kind of look
up to these people when youвЂ™re young and stupid but once you mature you realize itвЂ™s not funny anymore.
Along with the вЂњbad boyвЂќ image it seems tobacco is a running theme in your pieces. In a society that is just
beginning to see the unhealthy effects and look down upon smoking, how do you defend it in your art?
ItвЂ™s funny because I hate smoking. I loathe it. But itвЂ™s the human element that it brings to the painting. sometimes. IвЂ™m starting to not do it as much, especially with my child like characters. And these anti-smoking advocates should really start visiting art school because itвЂ™s a breeding ground for smoking. How does popular culture play into your art?
I watch a lot of movies so it has some play. I also read James Ellroy and other Crime/Noir novels. IвЂ™ve said this a million time but I like the darker side of human nature.
What do YOU think the peopleвЂ™s attractions to your paintings are?
I think they like the dark humor.
There is definitely a kind of punk aesthetic to your pieces. How much of music is influential in your art?
As I said before it had a big influence. ThereвЂ™s very interesting people in punk rock and just music in general.
What are your thoughts on the state of art and illustration today?
I think itвЂ™s a great time. Tons of fresh talent out there. The only complaint would be on the business end, mostly illustrators. They need to be better informed on protecting their work. Also getting paid what they deserve. I teach at Otis College and most of the illustration graduates are jumping into projects where they arenвЂ™t getting paid fairly. Doing an entire childrenвЂ™s book for $1000. ThatвЂ™s a crime.
вЂњCigar BreakвЂќ is beautifully executed and really does have a Disney artist look to it. Could you perhaps give a few thoughts on that specific painting?
Pinocchio was my favorite Disney movie when I was little. I love the look of it. I originally wanted to go
into layout/background painting for an animation studio when I graduated but decided to freelance instead. So when Gallery 1988
got permission to do a tribute to Disney show I jumped all over it. I had a blast painting that piece.
How long does it take to finish a painting?
A head painting will take about a day and half where something like the Disney painting took 2 weeks.
How much time do you spend in the studio?
8 to 12 hours a day.
How do you measure success?
By making a living doing something you love.
Will being a father change how you look at doing painting?
IвЂ™m sure it will. Once he starts to ask questions about my subject matter. He may also influence me. I think Picasso said something about every child is an artist. The problem is remaining an artist when they get older.
What does the future hold for Bob Dob?
I have a vinyl toy coming out with Strange Co
Where and how can people get a hold of your new book?
” There is a Deluxe edition that comes with a hard cover book, a limited edition print, and a limited edition Gelaskin for the video iPod. You can get that on my site at “