Karan Singh is a man of many projects. Aside from being a fulltime freelance illustrator, he is also a staff member here at Depthcore, the sole editor and contributor at Pig Bimpin', the lone artist behind "The Daily Quickies" and now the co-creator of an amazing charitable project called "Half Of Us".
Depthcore is delighted to be a media sponsor of this event, and it was Justin Maller's great pleasure to recently fire a few questions Karan's way before the big event gets underway from 9AM - 9PM on Saturday, August 27th AEST.
Justin Maller: Half Of Us is an amazing project. Can you quickly break down the premise of the project for those not familiar?
Karan Singh: Half of Us is a project initiated by myself and my partner Ashleigh Leech. It is 12 illustrations in 12 hours, where prints of each of the illustrations will be sold to raise funds for the Cancer Council. Our name 'Half of Us' comes from the statistic that half of us (in Australia) will be diagnosed by cancer by 85. The statistic alone was enough to motivate us to do something and since developing the idea, we've seen amazing sponsors in Impact Digital Printing and K.W Doggett who have agreed to cover our printing needs. All the proceeds will go straight to the Cancer Council.
Justin Maller: You have a pretty personal connection to this cause - I know it's pretty near and dear to your heart...
Karan Singh: Yes indeed. In late 2009, I was diagnosed with an advanced case of Hodgkins Lymphoma, a type of cancer. I'm fortunate enough to say that it's something I've been able to overcome. There is still a majority of cancers which aren't as treatable and having experienced the trials and tribulations first hand, it's something I felt compelled to support.
Justin Maller: How did the idea to do this come about? Just in the shower one day?
Karan Singh: I've always wanted to do something and not having access to bunch of money to organise a huge event, I chose to do something I knew and that is illustration. An illustration marathon is something that has always been in the back of my mind and probably something I'm better suited to completing in comparison to an actual running marathon.
Justin Maller: I'm delighted that the project is going to build on your "Quickies" format - you're a man of many side projects! Give us some background on the quickies and their dramatically rising popularity!
Karan Singh: I recently finished working on a gig for The Saturday Age which is a broadsheet here in Melbourne where the objects made were iconic and minimal. I had a lot of fun making them and liked that results would be seen quickly. I wanted to challenge myself to create a simple illustration every week day just so I could keep my mind active and explore new ideas. Essentially, I make them within an hour or less and are usually quite minimal in comparison to my regular style. The project has since run for over 20 weeks amounting to over 100 illustrations. It's steadily been growing in popularity, primarily because they're quite simple and are usually easily to interpret. I often illustrate things I see or a book I may have read or as of late a pun that I come up with.
Justin Maller: Any ideas on mind already for the marathon, or are you going to freestyle them all? Taking suggestions perchance?
Karan Singh: I'm definitely planning them. The reality of the quickies is that while they may take an hour or less to make, they take another hour or two to think of. The longer I do it, the more I push myself to out do the previous ideas. For Half of Us, there's a lot riding on it, so I've planned 12 ideas so I hit my targets and thus so there's something to sell on the website!
Justin Maller: Assuming this year will be a resounding success (as I'm sure it will!) do you have any plans or ideas for expansion next year?
Karan Singh: Absolutely. This year, with the project being in its first year, we've been pretty cautious to keep things simple to ensure we achieve our goals. Also it gives us the opportunity to deal with those unforeseen issues that may crop up so that, should we expand, things will run smoothly. We really hope it's a success as we have grand plans of how we could make this a bigger event and raise more money for a worthy cause!