Cruisin and Boozin: The Art of Jamie Browne

Cruisin and Boozin: The Art of Jamie Browne

ArtMay 25, 2022

Jamie Browne is one of the chillest guys around. The Sydney based artists work makes you want to crack open a cold one and catch the sunset while cruising down the PCH. With clean, simple and fun illustrations, his art delivers major nostalgia of old school surf and skate vibes with a side of rad dad jokes. We talked with Jamie about beach culture, how it has influenced his art, and whether or not he can shred on a skateboard.

 

Favorite beach?

Freshwater beach here in Sydney.
 

Favorite beer? 

Free. Cold. Beer.

 


Sushi or burrito? 

I love both but miss the Mexican food I could get stateside so I’ll go with burrito.


What kind of music do you jam to?

I listen to a pretty diverse mix of music ranging from chill 70’s Jazz through to some heavy stoner and doom metal but I would say contemporary psych rock is a pretty consistent mainstay of mine and it definitely feeds into my art the most.


One thing you can’t work without? 

Music.


Strangest thing in your fridge right now: 

A bag of frozen prawn heads from a few Christmases ago.


When did you discover your talent for art? 

I’ve been drawing and filling books with sketches & doodles from an early age much to my teachers' frustration but to my friends' delight. There are a few artists in my family and so the encouragement was always there. But it was probably when I noticed the overlap between art, skating and music that I found a place that I naturally fit into. That’s when it clicked that maybe I had something to contribute too.


You are from Australia yet your style is heavily influenced by California surf/skate culture. How did you get into that scene? 

Growing up where I did on the beaches of Sydney, there is a huge surf and skate culture that kind of permeates everything. The more I got into skateboarding and the graphics, videos etc, the more I was tapping into its California roots and having lived in both places now, I can say that it’s a very similar vibe and lifestyle. 


Are you awesome at skateboarding? 

Ha, I wouldn’t say awesome but I enjoy it immensely.

 


You have had a long standing relationship working with Volcom. How did that opportunity come along? 

So, I have to thank my mum for this one ha. Basically, she worked with a lady who’s son worked in the art/marketing dept at Volcom Australia. I got in touch and they started throwing me some poster and tee graphic jobs. I guess they liked what they saw, I got on well with the crew and it eventually grew into a full-time gig. Stoked!


Your illustrations often are accompanied by a play on words or phrases. How do you come up with those? Does the art dictate the pun? 

Usually it’s the pun that dictates the art, like if I hear a phrase and notice something in it that I can twist to thread a needle between it and the surf/skate/booze world I inhabit. Otherwise, it’s just me trying to create an interesting visual around an expression or idea that makes sense to me. I love double meanings, illusions,  contrasting “Yin & Yang” stuff as well as plain awful dad jokes.


Do you have a favorite piece? 

It always changes and I do have a few old favs but right now I really like the skull on skateboard wheels with the babe chilling on the beach within. I couldn’t stop doodling it for ages and it seems to encompass a lot of the themes I like to include in my art.

 

What type of work are you most interested in doing right now? 

Lately I’ve been working on some projects that involve creating a main hero piece of artwork that is then supported by a bunch of similar icons that describe other aspects of an event, venue, process, whatever and it’s these little guys that I’ve been enjoying the most as I love drawing small and trying to distill ideas down to fun & simple “one glance” spot illustrations. 

 

A lot of people have gotten your art tattooed on them, which led you to create the Tattoo Token. Can you explain what that is exactly? 

Yeah, I get so stoked to see people having my work tattooed on them and while I’m completely fine with it, I noticed some other artists doing these tokens that are basically a paid licence to have a tattoo of their artwork done. I don’t require people to buy them - it’s completely optional for me but I thought it was a great way for people to support artists for their ideas and gain their blessing to have it tattooed. 


What has been the best part about making art for a living so far? 

Probably the freedom. I’m not constrained by the normal structures of a workplace. I get to hang with my kids whenever I want. If I’m stuck for ideas, I can go skate or drink a beer on a wednesday morning if I like. I still have deadlines to meet but the time up to that point is mine to balance. Also, I just have fun drawing this stuff.

 

Shameless plugs: jamiebrowneart.com  |  @jamiebrowneart.com