We had the good fortune of connecting with David OKU and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi David, putting aside the decision to work for yourself, what other decisions were critical to your success?
Since I started working as a Freelancer, I guess the best decision I have ever taken was to move into the world of animation. I’ve always drawn free hand and digitally but always felt that something was missing and that something was making my illustration move.
In 2019 I started watching tons of Youtube tutorials every day, till I start understanding the mechanism of After Effects and that was a truly Blast as it change my game.
What contributed to my success was deciding to participate to this year @36daysoftype competition,
where I end up becoming a winner alongside other 5 artists , it felt great as I applied everything I have learnt in the previous months and the feedback was just incredible.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Today, my art is inspired by travel, culture and music and it helps me create psychedelic visuals that blend simplistic colour combinations with an intricate design compositions. I say “psychedelic” because I usually fill all my compositions with a lot of elements or quotes to motivate and put a smile on the people watching my work.I do art in order to create positive vibes and motivate others. Showing that if you really have a dream and you are focus, every dream can come true. “Art don’t need words, to express emotion”.
I think what sets me apart from others, is my spirit of collaboration. Over the past years I have collaborated with numerous artist as I believe you can learn from anyone, don’t matter the age, don’t matter the gender we all have greatness and that greatness need to be shared.
Getting where I am today has not been easy, especially in a city like london which was foreign to me back in 2010.
Is almost like restarting a new life without pillars you can hold, as I didnt know anybody. It was during my time at the London College of Communication that I gained a true appreciation for creative exploration. I definitely left university with a better idea of the artist I wanted to become and the niche I wanted to carve out for myself.
In my opinion the most challenging part of being a Designer/Artist was knowing my worth, because i believe a lot of Clients abuse Designers especially when they don’t have a great understanding of how much profit their work can bring to the client. I still remember those days I use to charge 50£ for 30 logos, sounds crazy I know, but when you are just at the beginning you want to have a happy client, as the might bring more work to you table.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I guess i will start from Shoreditch & Hoxton, as is the epicenter for Art, Is young, Fresh and have great spots like the Box Park & Soho House where you can meet lots of artist. I will definitely bring them to Brixton Village,Pop Brixton, Brixton Market, hang out at Brixton Jamm and if there is any of my favourite artist at the O₂ Academy. Last but not least chill under the sun with a beer at Battersea Park.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I want to dedicate my shoutout to the persons that have always supported me and encourage me within all this years. A big thank you to my 3 brothers and fiance, as they have always motivated me in doing art and have always kept me believing in myself.
My Fiance played a big role in me becoming the artist I am today, because she allowed me to put time into my art whenever I wanted and pushed me into finishing University 8 years after I drop out of school to find work in order to support my family.
She suggested me to join a foundation course at London College of Communication and guess what?
I did and was the best experience ever, Attending university help me gain access to many resource that help me develop as an artist, but was also a place to meet many talented people from all over the world. It was something i have never experienced before when I was still living in Italy but definitely it open my eyes on the designer I wanted to be come.
Other people I will like to thank are my Uni crew, Aniruddh Mehta great artist from India, Andras Csuka from Hungary and last but not least James Tran, this guys have inspired me, worked with me, and are dreamers like me .
Photo by Jon Payne