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Dragon Design Interview

Can Başkent

logic and the rest...



Can: Hello Mike of Dragon Design! How the world seems to you nowadays? Pink or darker than ever?
Hi Can, how are you? Over here we're fine, there are some better and not so good days in everybody's life I guess. If you mean the world at all, I guess the over-population drives everything in darker depths than ever before, darkness rules on many places of the world, just watch TV...

Tell our readers some nice words about Dragon Design and Medusa Productions!
Ok, to introduce Dragon Design, we should tell your readers, that I'm working as illustrator and designer, we're offering bandlogos, coverartworks, motives for shirts and tattoos, etc. and mostly I'm working for the Metal-scene. Medusa Productions is the name of our little mailorder, registered to my wife's name, with which we're offering some CDs I've done the drawings for, but also our own Compil.CD "Dragonclaws" and the legendary skull-candles. Sometimes we also have stuff we've traded with friendly Bands/Zine-editors. With both companies we're mostly involved in the Underground, we're trying to promote ourselves as well as the Bands we're working for.

Give us some examples of the designs you draw appeared in Underground!
Well, a lot of Bands I've drawn for in earlier times could reach a deal with a company meanwhile, but Bands like Dispatched, Violation or Soul Demise, for which I've drawn the coverartworks, were Underground for a long time. Some others still are, like Dead Emotions, Devilry, Steel Warrior, Osgiliath and many more. The newest design might be a Logo I did for Ork and a MCD's coverartwork for Ragnarok (Nor) and of course the current drawings for the Atlantida and the OTR Compilation-series.

Well, is it your full-time job, or it's a side project or just a hobby? Is it a profitable job to draw cover designs and logos?
Ha, ha, you really can't say it's "profitable", a lot of Bands and labels have a very little financial background, so I'll probably never get rich by that. On the other hand I really try to make a living out of it, it's a fight every month...I mean, we have months with quite good sales and others where I earn nothing, so it's a risk anyway, but it's my dream-job, so...Meanwhile it's a full-time job, we're getting a lot of requests, which is very cool of course.

Dragon Design & Medusa Prod. has launched a compilation CD including the Bands you cooperate and contribute. How was this idea born? Do you plan to carry on launching CDs?
Well, usual we released a little Newsletter every year, which is called "The Dragon-Flyer", but this year I wanted to do something else to present us and our clients in a more attractive way, so we've released "Dragonclaws" instead. In the Newsletter we also mentioned the Bands I've drawn for with addresses and some Illustrations, but it was xeroxed only and a lot of the Bands were pure Underground. With the Compil. CD I had the chance to show around my work in a properly printed way and to introduce the Bands with a song each, so I went for that. The participation was free for the Bands, so the whole thing was quite expensive for me, now we're trying to get back a bit of the money by selling it, not easy in a time where almost every pro-printed Zine has a Compil CD. included, but we're quite successful until yet...I don't know if I can continue this series, but if the success with Vol1 holds on, I will think about it in any case, the idea was pretty accepted by everybody until yet.

What are your future dreams for the world and for yourself?
Hard question, because I'm not too enthusiastic when it comes to questions about the world in common...I'm realistic enough to concentrate my "dreams" ,or better: wishes onto my own little world, concerning my family, friends and my work. Comprehensions like health, livelihood and personal aims are more important to me like "Peace on earth" or "Death to all Christs" or similar unrealistic ideas.

Did the PCs and Internet make the world easier or more complex and more stupid? Are thee an Internet maniac?
I don't know, whether the net makes the world easier, at least it makes everything closer and a bit faster, for this there are some advantages for sure, but it's also easier to spread any bullshit you can imagine... Of course Dragon Design also has a homepage and sometimes I surf a bit, but I wouldn't describe myself as a maniac...

What're the positive and negative sides of Internet considering underground scene all over the world ?
Well, as I said, people can communicate faster and they can reach persons from all over the world more easily, furthermore Underground Bands can introduce themselves more attractive with homepages and MP3-downloads of their songs. On the other hand the market is crowded enormous and everybody who thinks he can hold a guitar, presents himself as a "Band"...Nevertheless, if it comes to sending out CDs, original drawings, something printed like Flyers, etc you have to use snail-mail again, so the net only helps with discussing ideas or passing informations, if you want to work serious on an Underground-project, you still need more than the net only, I guess.

Do you support the "Carnival Against the Capitalism" and the activities against the WTO & IMF? I ask this questions since there exist a belief that metalheads don't have any political or philosophical thoughts as much as punks have.
You're probably right, also in my opinion Metal should not deal with politics. But I think it is not the case that Metal-heads don't have a political opinion at all, it's more that Metal represents a forum for a certain lifestyle, it even can be something people of different countries or social status have in common, it should not be a media fucking politics might work with. If you ask me personal, I don't support any political direction with my work, the reasons I've mentioned a bit in question No. 6, but I can reveal to you, that I'm not recommending those "united world" or "united Europe" ideas, that's in my opinion a lack of respect against the different cultures and I probably must be a capitalist, because I never would share my earned money with somebody, just because it's the will of any Government

Who are your influences?
I always loved the Iron Maiden-coverartworks, they might be one of the biggest influence when I started to draw seriously, with the time I got interested more and more in artists who were drawing in a fantastic and "Metal-like" style...To mention some names, I'm admiring Michael Wheelan, Dan Seagrave, H.R. Giger, Louis Royo, old works from Rodney Matthews, Boris Vallejo and others working in that style.

Any last bad words for your possible fans in the future reading this interview.
Thank you, Can, for doing this interview with us and helping us to spread our name again, further good luck for your writing career in the future. If any readers are interested in examples of our work, just check out our homepage (www.dragondesign666.de ), or, if you're interested in a special drawing for your next release, just write us, we willingly try to inform you as good as possible. Support the Underground and BE NICE TO DEMONS !!!