Anthony Peters is a UK-based illustrator and designer. He has illustrated three t-shirts for The Fableists’ launch. They will be available in limited edition soon. Anthony is represented by RARE BIRD in London.
TheFableists: Tell us a bit about your background. Where did you start? Where do you come from?
AP: I’m a council estate kid from a single parent family who got a free University Education in Fine Art and now runs a successful design and illustration business. Thanks to the way the system used to work…
My earliest creative memory is of visiting the Natural History Museum when I was 5. I got bought a fold out poster of all the dinosaurs and went home and drew them all. My mother told me I should be an artist and I guess it sank in… Though I wanted to be an archeologist before an artist!
TheFableists: What, or who, inspires your day-to-day work?
AP: I’m a Culture junkie, so inspiration comes from everywhere, old Ladybird books, Graphis annuals, record covers, music, films… But a big percentage of my inspiration comes from my family. My kids are bursting with ideas and it’s hard to compete! And many of my ideas come to me when I’m walking my dog along the East Sussex cliffs!
TheFableists: Would you say you draw everyday?
AP: I definitely make things everyday, not necessarily always with a pencil, sometimes ink, sometimes Gocco prints, screen prints but mostly stuff on the computer, sadly.
TheFableists: Where are we most likely to find your work? Is it mostly in the medium of advertising, magazine, print work or online?
AP: I’m a kind of jack-of-all-master-of-none kind of character so I have done editorial for people like GQ and New Scientist, tees for companies like 2K by Gingham, stacks of screen prints with people like Print Club London and Unlimited Editions, done some apps with School Of Happy and kids illustrations with Okido Magazine. It suits me fine to work in many different mediums as it would drive me insane to do the same thing again and again just because it was successful. I would rather try new things and fail than repeat myself and succeed.
TheFableists: What were your inspirations behind the designs you created for us?
AP: The inspirations for the designs I made come from long held beliefs I have that fit right alongside those of the Fableists.
The Factory piece is a piece of Paris 68 Student Riot style graphics given a new context. It suggests that factories shouldn’t pollute and degrade our world and that they could, in fact, be used as decent and fair working places which care about environmental concerns.
The ‘Wear Me Out’ piece is a simple statement on the fact that we seem to throw things out for the most arbitrary reasons, nothing I like more than seeing someone in a well loved and well worn item of clothing that is still going strong!
Lastly, the soldiers piece is a simple and fairly cliché statement on the fact that its better to create and share than to destroy and conquer!
TheFableists: What are your thoughts on The Fableists? Do you think there should be more people doing what we are?
AP: I feel as though so many clothing manufacturers lack transparency, and this is because their manufacturing methods are probably exploitive or environmentally damaging. It’s refreshing to see a company that has a strong moral code and ethos and puts its money where its mouth is. And so transparent from the outset!
I would love to see more companies doing this kind of thing but I fear that greed and the pursuit of ever growing profits get in the way of ethics and quality. Maybe The Fableists will have a positive influence on the children’s clothing market!
TheFableists: If you could work for anyone, who would it be? Do you have a dream client?
AP: Always a hard question for me! And it changes all the time!
In a dream it would be a collaboration with Charles and Ray Eames and Geoff Mcfetridge, Creative Direction by Paul Arden and adapted into a movie by Wes Anderson.
In the real world I would like to get into working with animators for commercials and music videos, and would like to indulge my love of music by working on sleeve art and design. Though I am teaching myself after effects so who knows, maybe I will branch out into animation myself!
TheFableists: Do you have a particular client that keeps coming back?
AP: Okido Magazine have come back time after time, and I love working with Sophie Dauvois and Maggie Li. Plus as it’s a kids magazine I get to be a hero to my kids! I also work with Print Club London a lot and Unlimited Collective, and was recently at Pick Me Up with both organisations.
TheFableists: Are there any places in the world that make you feel creative?
AP: London fills my mind with ideas and colours and energy. I worked and lived there for many years and I felt I just fed off the energy, but it can be tiresome. Now I live on the East Sussex Coast where the Downs meet the sea and this has become my geographic muse!
TheFableists: If you could change one thing about the world, what would it be?
AP: The continual pursuit of greed and power. We have been sidetracked into caring about profits, returns and low overheads. Parents are being berated for choosing to be with their children instead of working 100 hour weeks to help fight in the worldwide economic warfare; governments are calling the poor scroungers…It’s a construct, a way of squeezing down labour costs and milking even more profit out of people. People need to switch off their phones, step outside, sit on a hill in the sunshine and remember that they are here to enjoy their 80 odd years as a conscious being, not as a worker drone!