If you search for Jon Burgerman on the internet you get many hits. The British New York-based illustrator is well-known for his doodle illustrations and a big name in the illustration scene. Face This is grateful that an artist such as Jon, who is in such high demand, volunteered to design a shirt for our foundation. Face This linked Jon to 9-year old Kartini, a pupil from Lombok Island, Indonesia. Jon was touched by her drawings and he was adamant to retain much of Kartini’s style in their design for the Face This 2019 collection. Read the story of Kartini’s and Jon’s joint-effort.
Who is Jon Burgerman?
Jon Burgerman is an award-winning artist who grew up in Birmingham, UK where he graduated in fine art from Nottingham Trent University. He started his career working for a chain store designing shopping bags. Soon Jon Burgerman’s talents were noticed by other well-known companies. When Levi’s gave him his first major assignments, Jon decided to start his own label. Nowadays Jon’s art work is collected by the Victoria and Albert Museum in London and his Instagram stories are very popular with his followers. Jon is also very successful with his books that encourage people to become more creative.
On the beach of Senggigi, Kartini made a beautiful drawing
New input in New York
After a while Jon felt he needed a change of scenery and he left the UK looking for new creative impulses. Jon settled down in New York where he still lives today. Earning a living as an artist in New York is difficult, however Jon believes that he needs this challenge to reach a higher level of creativity. Jon Burgerman: “Living in New York confronts me that I do not belong here, as an Englishman I’m not meant to be here. It is exciting and interesting to not fit in, being a bit of an outsider. Therefore things feel new and unusual. I need all these things as an inspiration for my work.” Besides city life Jon gets inspired by cartoons, animation and anything that is larger than life, funny and goofy. It has always been like this, when he was a child and now as an adult.
Watch this exclusive interview with John Burgerman
Jon Burgeman: ‘Draw, doodle, make, and have fun!’
Jon Burgerman’s artworks are all about doodling: “Doodling is when you do something and you do not know exactly what it is. It can be anything: drawing on paper, on installations, on a subway station, on a magazine, on a wall or on a roof. Doodling has the power to become something else. It brings fun, happiness and joy. I want my work to be inspiring.”
Kartini is named after an Indonesian female hero who fought for women’s rights
Fun X fisherman X father = Face This Tee
Jon co-created a T-shirt with Kartini, a 9-year old Indonesian girl from Lombok Island. Kartini enjoys going to the beach to see the fishermen arrive. So she drew a picture telling the story of her father who is a fisherman in Senggigi. Jon: “There is no right or wrong in art work. Drawings get my attention when you sense that they are honest and have no pretentions. That’s why I like Kartini’s drawings so much. Her drawing contains all these aspects. It is really beautiful, every little line and shape tells me something; it is open. Kartini knows very well how to depict her favourite place. That is very nice.” The co-creation resulted in a fantastic Face This Tee where Kartini captured her father, the fisherman on her favourite spot, while Jon introduced fun elements to the final design.
“The experience was fun, a great project to make a T-shirt design. It is a privilege to be able to help people with my drawings and making art”, says Jon Burgerman about our project. What appeals to him most is that the proceeds of T-shirt sales support schools in Indonesia: “Education is everything, it sets a path for the future.”