Arts·Q&A

Artists are giving our logo a makeover each month, and January's is cool as ice

Get to know Toronto artist and animator Carolyn Tripp — and learn more about her design embracing winter's deep freeze.

Get to know Toronto artist and animator Carolyn Tripp

So chill. Carolyn Tripp's take on the CBC Arts logo for January. (Courtesy of the artist)

Facebook, Twitter, Instagram — our profile pages are looking cooler than usual, all thanks to Carolyn Tripp.

Every month, we'll be commissioning a Canadian artist to re-interpret the CBC Arts logo, and Tripp is kicking off the new year with a design that embraces winter's deep freeze.

Get to know the artist as she reveals the inspiration behind this cool-as-ice design.

That's it in action, below...

Name: Carolyn Tripp

Age: 35

Homebase: Toronto

Let's talk about that design! What inspired your take on the CBC Arts logo? 

When you all approached me about it, my first thought was, "OK, I can't improve on a classic," because seriously — the CBC gem is a national treasure. 

Using a brief animation sequence to reveal some icy crystals for the January edition seemed appropriate. We all felt the deep freeze at the beginning of the year. The purple is an homage to this year's Pantone: Ultra Violet.

The font selection is a more direct reference to my practice. I love classic video game fonts and how they remain a staple of post-internet imagery.

Still from "Secret Ghosts Pt 1" by Carolyn Tripp. (Courtesy of the artist)

How do you like to describe your work to people?

In my artistic practice, I experiment a lot with ephemera and organic shapes.

I use a lot of emoticons, emojis and video samples in my work, which can include anything from GIFs to stop motion to short animations. Classic-style cartoon ghosts appear in my work quite a bit as cultural apparitions.

My work usually references a soft, feminine colour palette as defined by "Cybertwee" (its opposite being "punk").

Show and tell? What project are you most proud of?

"Secret Ghosts Pt "1 that I released in 2017. I built up the imagery for a long time, but I really have to push to finish long-form pieces (as opposed to GIFs, drawings, etc).

It felt like a "for real" piece after I asked my partner, Brady Bothwell, to score it. He had an amazingly intuitive sense about what it needed. It turned out really beautifully.

What's inspiring your art these days?

Video games and always classic animation from the '30s and '40s. When Cuphead was released that brought me a lot joy. I had been waiting for it to be released for three years! It deserves all of the hype. I was also fortunate enough to go to a fantastic workshop about their character design with Tina Nawrocki at TAIS (Toronto Animated Image Society).

What's the last Google search that sent you down a rabbit hole?

Binchō-tan (courtesy of my brother) and Sexy Brutale walk-throughs. I haven't been this game-obsessed in a long time. It's like someone made a three-dimensional Clue with a splash of Groundhog Day. The amount of problem solving you have to do is almost silly, but I'm into it. 

Still from "Secret Ghosts Pt 1" by Carolyn Tripp. (Courtesy of the artist)

What's your favourite place to see art?

Good question! Digital spaces are my favourite. Or places that incorporate digital space into their exhibitions. Trinity Square Video is a great space in Toronto that bridges that divide.

Who's the last artist you discovered online?

Cult of Dang (@cult_of_dang), a.k.a. Danna Windsor on Instagram. There are some real gems on her account right now.

What's one work of art you dream of owning?

A Kusama pumpkin. A Tenniel print. A Miyazaki cel. Or an Adam Parker Smith sculpture.

Still from "Secret Ghosts Pt 1" by Carolyn Tripp. (Courtesy of the artist)

Any new projects on the go? Where can we see more of your art?

The pieces I'm working on now probably won't be completed until the end of 2018, but I'm happy to be taking my time.

I'll be releasing works in progress on Instagram (@carotripp), as always. I may get squirrelly and release some new GIFs or printed pieces if I feel like the new characters are ready!

This will be a very work-heavy year with fewer "actual" releases — at least of my own. I'm chatting about collaborating with some wonderful people, so some of that may come down the pipe before the year is up. We'll see!

Follow Carolyn Tripp on Instagram, and discover more art on her website.

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