Arts·Q&A

Nature's beauty inspired our September logo

To Raku Inoue, art is everywhere. Case in point: he used stuff from his backyard to make that design.

To Raku Inoue, art is everywhere. Case in point: he used stuff from his backyard to make that design

CBC Arts logo by Raku Inoue. (Courtesy of the artist)

Not everyone's heading back to school, but September can still feel like the time for changing our habits and learning new things. And maybe that's why Raku Inoue was the perfect artist for this month's assignment.

Based in Montreal, Inoue makes art from petals and twigs and whatever he can forage from his backyard (and/or florist). But it all began as a new hobby — just a creative outlet from his ad agency desk job.

That's the story he shared with us a couple years back (watch it here), and his reputation has only blossomed since then. Below, he gives us an update. There's some info on his logo design, too. Read on.

Name: Raku Inoue

Age: 39

Homebase: Montreal

How do you like to describe your art practice?

My art is like a therapeutic exercise to me. I do it because it gives me challenges to overcome, and when I'm done, it fills me with a sense of accomplishment. It is a feeling that's quite intoxicating.

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

Most of my creations are inspired by nature and its beauty. The main source of inspiration may vary from textures, colours, the subjects or perhaps all three. I just love to experiment and see what I can achieve with what nature offers in the form of raw materials.

What plants and flowers did you use to make the image?

I used Craspedia and Leucanthemum, which was kindly supplied by Florsani, a flower farm/distributor in Ecuador. Everything else — such as Crocus and other little wild flowers — are from my backyard. Same goes for the kiwi tree vines which were used to create the "art" type.

What's the project you're most proud of?

[It's] hard for me to give a definitive answer since my tastes and preferences shift from time to time. It's like when I'm asked, "what is my favourite colour"? That depends on my mood on that day and how I'm feeling. However, I can say with certainty that the first [piece from the] Natura Insects [series], which was a rose petal beetle, is very close to my heart. After all, this Natura Insects series gave me the opportunity to be featured in National Geographic this past August, and I'm very proud of that.

(CBC Arts)

Who is the last artist you discovered online?

I have to admit that I don't spend too much time navigating online for artistic discovery, but recently, I got in touch with a chef by the name of Douglas McMaster from Silo London. I love his zero-waste approach to cooking. He has published a book called The Zero Waste Blueprint: A Food System for the Future. His viewpoints inspire me tremendously.

What work of art do you wish you owned?

How about a full-course meal prepared by Douglas?! I have the perfect spot to put his work: in my belly.

What's your favourite place to see art?

I do love going to museums and exhibitions, of course, but I see art in all places. Being artistic is being open-minded and letting yourself be inspired by the things that surround you at that time. So for me, art is everywhere.

Where can we see more from you?

Definitely not on Facebook. But I am quite active on Instagram and I also post on Behance Network. I also have my official website, but that is still under construction.

Every month, we feature a new take on the CBC Arts logo created by a Canadian artist. Check out more Q&As with past contributors.