Hello there. I’m Ryan Duggan, an illustrator and screen printer from Chicago, Illinois. I’ve been making concert posters and art prints since 2006.
When did you first start getting involved with art and illustrating?
I’ve always been interested in drawing (my dad loved to draw and instilled it in my sister Rachal and I). Drawing and skateboarding is how I spent my youth.
How did you then find your way into printing?
I learned how to print in high school but I didn’t resurrect that knowledge and start making posters until 2006. The first band I worked for was Maps & Atlases—a band comprised of friends and roommates of mine that I owe a great debt to. Without them who knows if I would have even gotten into this.
And, you know I have to ask the cliche question, but what has been your favorite piece you’ve been able to cook up?
I have a lot of favorites but in recent memory, I’d say the three poster set I made for Courtney Barnett/Kurt Vile was a really fun one. I’d always wanted to make a set of posters that work together.
What was it like creating posters for Henry Rollins?
I was HUGELY influenced by Black Flag and all the Raymond Pettibon art surrounding it so receiving an email from Henry Rollins was a real moment for me. We also donated half the poster sales to Planned Parenthood so it was a feel-good time from front to back.
You once said, ‘Once you start doing what you love for a living, you begin to realize how easy it is to have a job’. Do you feel like the work you do is a job?
I feel like I have a 70 hour a week job, hah. Being self-employed is an all-encompassing task. I’m super lucky to do this for a living but it’s rare that I don’t have work on my mind in some form.
Not having a 9-5 has become this ‘cool’ thing in today’s society. What’s one thing that sucks about working as a ‘freelance’ artist?
It’s true, I feel like I hardly know anyone working 9–5 anymore. Having expensive, crummy insurance is definitely a current pet peeve. I have fond memories of paid time off as well, haha.
Dare To Be Stupid, came out 3 years ago now. Can we ever expect a new book?
Hopefully! That book is a capsule of my first ten years of concert posters so maybe somebody will want to do a book of art prints down the line.