• Artist Editions: Ted Feighan

    Designed exclusively for Urban Outfitters, Artist Editions is an ongoing series of limited, original designs from some of our favorite new artists.  

    Ted Feighan is a Cleveland based visual artist working primarily in paper found collage. His art is inspired by travel, exotic plants, animals and vintage interior design. Scroll on to read more. 

    Photos by Kelley Feighan 
    Can you introduce yourself — tell us more about who you are, where you’re from, and what you do. 
    My name is Ted Feighan and I’m a visual artist, musician and business owner living in Cleveland, Ohio. My visual art focuses mostly on found paper collage with an interest in plants and tropical themes. I also have a music project, Monster Rally, which produces sample-based exotica, tropicalia and hip hop. I am the co-owner (along with my wife) and creative director of Valley Cruise Press, a lifestyle brand that creates art-focused accessories, apparel and home goods. I’m also a new dad to twin 10-month-old girls.

    How did you first get into making paper collage?
    I started making paper collage work when I began taking art classes in college. But before that I had been doing a lot of digital collage in high school, mostly for band merch. 
    Tell us more about your Studio! Can you walk us through a typical day in the life?
    I share my studio space with the Valley Cruise office in the Ohio City neighborhood of Cleveland. We moved in about four months ago and the space is really awesome. There are giant windows which gives us great light and we have old belches from a local high school for the ceiling. On a normal day, I’ll get into the studio, answer some emails and start digging into some old books. I usually have 5-10 projects going at once so I’m always sourcing a lot of imagery. I’ll spend a lot of time cutting up paper and listening to records before I start to assemble any of the finished pieces. I’ll usually work on putting together a few at once. 

    What’s been inspiring you lately?
    I’ve been very into indoor plants lately. For a long time, I had been focus on flowers and blooms when looking for images but recently I’ve been inspired by the green foliage plants. I think this has been a response to moving from Los Angeles to Cleveland in the middle of winter and needing to surround myself with plants inside my home. 

    How did your style evolve to what it is today?
    I had started many years ago doing digital collage for my old bands artwork, t shirts, etc. Later I starting digging through old books and records when I was starting the Monster Rally project and I needed artwork that would fit the sounds of that music. That’s when I started really getting into the paper collage. So much of my work has been the result of the search. I seek out interesting images and I pick up whatever I think find the most intriguing. I’ve always had an interest in tropical and exotic places and images, which has lead to me to my most recent flora themed compositions. 

    What’s the most important thing to you when creating a piece of work? What do you hope for people to take away from it?
    I always want to try and take people out of their current space or mindset and put them somewhere new. I want my work to feel familiar, but fresh and a bit strange. When I started making this artwork I used to say that I was trying to create a world that I would like to live in. 
    Shop Ted Feighan For UO Tropical Landscape Tapestry

    Who are some other artists who you look up to? 
    I feel the most inspired by music. I’m a huge fan of Brian Wilson, his music from the mid 60s-early 70s is incredible. I’m also into tapestries and weavings from central and South America, that’s been inspiring a lot of my color and design lately. 

    What are some current projects you’re working on? 
    I’m working on several new pieces for my own brand, for release later this year. I’ve got a few commissions for other brands in the works too. I’m putting together a multimedia gallery show / performance thing that is going to be a visual and audio compliment to the most recently Monster Rally album, Flowering Jungle. Also, I’m trying to wrap up the Valley Cruise Fall 18 collection.
    Shop Ted Feighan For UO Cactus Bloom Throw Pillow

    Any advice for others who are looking to begin their own creative endeavor but are unsure how to start? What have been some of the biggest lessons you’ve learned? 
    The most important thing is just to keep working. Don’t let yourself get down or stressed about too much in your work, if you have ideas keep trying to make them happen. The biggest lesson I think I’ve learned is just to trust my own ideas and concepts and to work as hard as I can to execute them. It’s easy to get caught up in what everyone else is doing and it’s always important to remember to come back to your own concepts. 

    Lastly, what’s a dream project/ collaboration for you?
    I’d love to work with some brands that I’ve loved for a long time like Vans or Nike.
    Shop Ted Feighan For UO Flora Mug

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