Who’s behind the artwork of Petit Biscuit, Ekali and many others?
Chase went to Amsterdam Dance event, a five day festival about electronic dance music with showcases, keynotes, parties and even expositions! Sonos hosted an exposition about the French visual artist Quentin Deronzier. At this event they presented his work and videoclips in a way that proves the importance of a visual image complimented with music. Thanks to Sonos we had the opportunity to speak with this artist. Let's dive into his world and learn a little more about this creative genius who makes 3D imagery, videoclips and artwork in the music industry and beyond.
Written by Levi Adriaenssens, photography by Orrin van Jaarsveld, artwork by Quentin Deronzier & Jonathan Zawada
You worked in the advertising business before becoming a visual artist, how did that come about?
Well basically I grew out of the advertising business, I wanted to go my own way and put more of myself into art. So I started working alone armed with loads of motivation and persistence. I obligated myself to create several artworks per week, sent them around and just kept working. I started building a network, meeting artists and working for artists for free and it evolved into a professional job.
How did you end up in Amsterdam with Sonos?
I knew someone at an event agency that worked with Sonos. They told me they were looking for someone for an exposition. And that’s how they ended up with me, they considered the link between music and image to be good.
Quentin Deronzier (the pink shirt) @SonosADE - Picture by Orrin van Jaarsveld©
Where do you get your inspiration?
It comes from everywhere! From lakes, cities… but mostly traveling. Lately I’ve been in to Asian countries, I went to Japan one year ago, in three weeks I gained more inspiration than in two months normally! It was an incredible experience. By just looking at new cultures or being surrounded by new languages I get inspired.
Do you think being open to different cultures makes you more achieving?
Absolutely! By doing so you discover new things you’d otherwise never know you would like. You push yourself into new directions and discover more this way. For me being open to new things has been the starting point. When someone first asked me to make a videoclip, I had never done anything like it. But I took a chance and went for it. Now I make a lot of them.
Josh Pan - give it to ya (feat. ABRA) - videoclip by Quentin Deronzier
Do you also gain inspiration from other artists?
Definitely. Especially by just talking to them. By engaging in these conversations you can learn about new techniques, processes, new insights, and sometimes you even meet new people that way. I actually invited Jonathan Zawada once to one of my exhibitions. He is the graphic designer from Flume's last album/EP's. So it's always best to meet new people, with the biggest network possible. That's how you get inspired by others.
artwork for Flume's album: skin by Jonathan Zawada
You have a visual identity, but musicians have a certain vision for their artwork as well. How does the process with artists come about?
People come to me, so they know what to expect. That makes it easier to work together. Some artists don’t have a clear vision or idea. Those are harder to work with because you spend lots of time pitching creative paths but they're still indecisive. They'll know what they want when they see it. So artists that have a clear view on where they want to go are a lot easier to work with.
Where do you draw the line?
When it goes wrong I try to explain they came to me for my vision, style and identity. Mostly it’s because they're not sure about some ideas but then I’m like just trust me, let’s do this. I try to negotiate, but if the artist wants an ugly visual I can give them that too… At the end of the day they are the ones paying me, I just don’t promote it that much then (chuckles).
What if someone asks you to create something that totally clashes with your vision, or what if you have to work with someone that's very difficult?
My manager always has my back, but luckily I've never had to work with a total dickhead before!
What’s your ultimate dream?
I’d love to make a movie one day. With several producers for the soundtrack. Definitely one on the bucketlist!
Is there any artist in particular that you would like to work with?
My ultimate goal would be Flume! He's at least in my top three. He is very creative when it comes to productions and has a clear vision on what he’s doing and he’s just a nice guy you know! Slow Magic is another one, I’ve been a fan of him for over six years. Petit Biscuit is a dream that actually came true, he’s an artist I was totally in love with even before I even got into graphic design. To be able to work with him now is a dream come true. I am doing all the artwork for his album tour: the album, the visuals, everything! I really respect him and it’s great project for me because I can work with him from A to Z.
Petit Biscuit's album: 'Presence' - artwork by Quentin Deronzier
Do you have any tips for us young creatives that want to make it in this industry?
Be creative ofcourse and work like crazy! Always stay motivated, never give up and keep making stuff, it can only make you better. Networking and finding the right connection with people can help you along the way. There are thousands of others who want the same thing as you, you have to work just a little harder than all the rest. You also have to be able to monetise your business, I mean you have to pay your fucking bills you know? At first I worked for free but at a certain point you have to start charging people for you work. There's a budget for these things.
How do the little guys in belgium start building a network?
Before my business took off, I made one piece of artwork a day for an artist I liked. I tagged them on social media and when they liked it they reposted it and contacted me. SBTRKT and MØ did this. Many artists reposted my work and eventually started contacting me. So you always have to find a way to touch them or connect with them.
SBTRKT - Flickr - Quentin Deronzier's vision on the artwork
Diplo & Friends radioshow - Gryffin mixtape - Artwork by Quentin Deronzier
Daydreaming - Quentin Deronzier
Ekali ft. Denzel Curry - Babylon (remix EP) - Arwork by Quentin Deronzier
All new articles
Discovering dub culture and its influence on music at Couleur CaféDub: it’s something everybody knows but on the other hand, nobody truly knows. It’s a culture and music that is embedded throughout society in various ways which had a big influence on music and still does today. Dub music founded its roots on the Caribbean island Jamaica, yes that country where Bob Marley was born. What not so many people know is that this is also kind of the place where the roots of hip-hop and many other genres and musical traditions were born. Since then it has spread out over the world and established itself as a subculture with a broad following. We sat down with the guys from Roots Corner sound system at Couleur Café who hosted their very own dub corner stage with their soundsystem for three days straight. Discover all about dub music, the culture and its influence in this article!
The most colourful people at Couleur CaféLast weekend we went to Couleur Café with our Chase team. Couleur Café is not only a festival to discover great new music, food, graffiti art and all that good stuff, but also a festival to discover new people. It might be weird to describe, but it is a festival where people come together with an open mind. Once you walk past the Atomium, you enter a place where people are ought to be themselves and do whatever they want, well almost whatever they want… A place for kids, youngsters, hipsters, people of age, Rastafari, parents and so on! Everybody is welcome. We wanted to meet some of these people and tried to find five of the most colorful people at Couleur Café. Or at least some of the most Colorful since everybody is a bit crazy in their own positive way there!
How the Levi’s 501 Managed to Become a Style Icon
Over the last 145 years, Levi’s has been creating a huge legacy within the fashion and denim industry. The brand effortlessly embedded itself at the heart of subcultures and communities. Pioneer of denim, Levi’s managed to set itself apart from its competitors by creating an iconic silhouette lasting through...
5 clothing brands that are both fashionable and sustainableOrganizations all over the world are taking action in the battle against pollution and unfair working conditions. Especially fashion labels are stepping up their game. We selected five clothing brands that not only look good, but also make you feel good. We bet they’ll make you want to immediately ditch your current shopping habits.
Discover the new Niveau4 team at Couleur Café 2018In 2016, Couleur Café founded Niveau4: a unique show featuring the most promising rappers from Brussels, Flanders and Wallonia. Upcoming young performers get the chance to go all out on stage for a big crowd. Through Niveau4, the big audience got to know artists who are now at the top of Belgian hip hop charts. We're thinking of Coely, Roméo Elvis, Stikstof, ... This year, the festival presents the third edition of Niveau4 with six up and coming Belhop acts.
Travel to New York through our Instagram takeover by photographer Sacha Claes
The Hasselt-based video- and photographer Sacha Claes brings along his camera wherever he goes. In his portfolio you’ll find colourful pictures he took on various trips. For his Instagram takeover he shared 7 shots he took in New York City. Past winter he paid a memorable visit to the Big Apple. Discover more about Sacha and his trip to the most notorious city in his takeover.
Fire is Gold festival’s new unisex hoodies collectionThe new unisex hoodie collection of the music, sports and fashion festival Fire is Gold is here, and it’s lit. Literally. The overall color/theme is yellow, the color of flames (and probably closest to gold) and the FiG logo all over the sleeves. The sweaters come in black too if yellow isn't your thing.
Desperados DIY Sound Stage with KiNK
We know Desperados as the world’s first Tequila Flavoured Beer. Many of us sip a couple of chilled Desperados during hot summer nights or maybe at a club with friends. It doesn’t matter where you drink it, with Desperados you can turn any place into a party. With that sprit in mind, the beer brand invited up to 300 party people to an old sugar factory in Amsterdam.
Meet 21-year old producer Messoins, the brain behind YouTube series #JourneyOfABeatMusic and storytelling: its a match made in heaven for Arsène Rurangiza aka music producer and composer Messoins. He makes the art of producing beats look easy in his YouTube series Journey of a Beat. Messoins takes his viewers on a musical journey during which he explains step-by-step how he produced a certain beat. The digital music composer takes his beatmaking videos to the next level by inviting artists for each session. They write lyrics to his beats and perform the song live at the end of the video. Messoins manges to compress this whole process into easy-to-watch 5-minute videos.
5 New Belgian Hip-Hop Tracks You Should Check OutWe’re back with your weekly update of new Belgian hip-hop tracks. This week we’re presenting debut singles from 3C1P and MVNSI, some funky beats by JTOTHEC and Kunde. And to top off: another release from the notorious Brussels hip-hop duo Caballero & JeanJass featuring their pal Roméo Elvis
Relaas x Enchanté: een Gentse verhalenavond voor en door kansarmen
Een kop koffie, een fris glas cola of gezellig uit eten gaan; het lijken evidenties, maar zijn dat bijlange niet voor iedereen. In Vlaanderen zijn er heel wat mensen die niet kunnen delen in onze comforten zoals knusse koffiebars en hippe restaurants. De twee Gentse non-profit organisaties Relaas en Enchanté slaan de handen in elkaar om mensen die er nood aan hebben bij te staan.