Today we’d like to introduce you to David Broughton.
David, we’d love to hear your story and how you got to where you are today both personally and as an artist.
My story started, not unlike many others, I guess. Pencil, crayon, marker on paper, drawing. My parents being talented musicians, I was encouraged to explore the creative medium. It didn’t take long to notice I excelled, technically. Drawing creatively was always difficult, though. I tended to just draw stuff out of comic books and cartoons. Classmates would often accuse me of tracing, and it’d make me so mad! It only took 20 or so years to realize my technical advantage was a GOOD thing. That’s when I found printmaking. While creativity was necessary for coming up with art school projects, I spent a good deal of my time exploring the technical side of printing. And I friggin’ loved it!.
On a cross country trip in the summer of 2007, I came up with 2 funny (depending on who you ask) designs, and thought, “I’m going to be a t-shirt printer!” The thought planted a seed, though the memory of it flew away much like the rest of that amazing summer did. Back in Atlanta, 2010, I had a pivotal, life changing conversation with a friend from high school. For her, it was a conversation likely not remembered. For me, it changed everything. I went from unsuccessfully looking for bar jobs, to researching screen printing shops, and hit the pavement with my “resume” (that’s in quotations as I kind of think my resume was a joke).
A couple weeks later, I was the greenhorn at a shop that apparently had pretty high turnover. After a few months of adversity – learning curves and some really negative employees – I was running a 14-color automatic press. I spent about a year and a half there when I was fired the day before I quit for differences in priorities. No job, a final paycheck, and a tax return later, I had one small chunk of change. Then I found Bubba down south of Atlanta. I bought his manual screen printing equipment with all of my money, and, being half way there, I guess you could say I was living’ on a prayer.
We’d love to hear more about your art. What do you do you do and why and what do you hope others will take away from your work?
I just want to print screen. Mostly, I just want to print YOUR cool designs. The printer/designer collaboration really means the most to me. I get to work with amazing folks all day long, and I get to be part of their story. Whether it’s a retail shop in Ponce City Market, an artist who is on his/her grind working to expand, or recording artists playing at Eddie’s Attic, The Tabernacle, and beyond – I get to play a small role in that story. That means EVERYTHING to me. Sure, I’ve got some really fun shirts I’ve designed and printed as well, but it’s the most fun bringing other people’s work to real life.
What do you know now that you wished you had learned earlier?
My advice for other artists? Meet other artists. Connect with them. If you think it’s a competition out here, you’ll live a much lonelier life. And you will shut out so much opportunity. Don’t spend time getting jealous, or wishing you had what someone else had. It means they have done something or are doing something you aren’t. Did you lose an amazing customer, or a big job? Your options are to be angry about it or realize that you weren’t able to provide as much value as someone else. Honestly, I wish I could print All the shirts in Atlanta. For everyone! But I know there are many factors that wash out that possibility. Just do the work and put in the hours. People are doing better than you are likely because they put in the work. Focus on how you can be better, not how you can be like “so-and-so”.
Do you have any events or exhibitions coming up? Where would one go to see more of your work? How can people support you and your artwork?
Having printed shirts for so many years now, if you’re anywhere out and about in Atlanta, I’d guess it’s moderately to highly likely you’ll come across a shirt I had the joy of printing. You can support my work by rocking’ sweet Atlanta t-shirts! As well as Etsy, I sling some tees at Homegrown on Memorial, so buy one AFTER you eat your Comfy Chicken Biscuit. You don’t want to spill gravy on your new torso cover. Follow me on the ‘grams @baronpress. See the really great stuff we get to print there, and you will be exposed to other great artists in the city doing great things. Buy their stuff, too! Support Atlanta artists as a whole. I believe we’re all in this together. And tell your friends! Most all of us have to work. And most of us have to wear clothes. If you ever need shirts printed for you or your company, I sure would love to chat with you about it!
- Website: http://atlantascreenprinting.press
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @baronpress
- Other: http://thebaronpress.com/quote