We feel very happy to be able to announce our first collaboration with an illustrator. Behind the name of "Blessend" hides a brilliant illustrator from Sardinia (an island in Italy) called Luca Devinu. The name of "Blessend" is connected to religious benedictions but was choosen becouse of the meaning "the end of one bless and the start of another". He is a lover of occultism, tapes and vinyls maniac; and bassis of an Italian post metal band called Riten. An artists with a darker soul who collaborated with us for three designs: CHAPTER I, CHAPTER II and CHAPTER III; all three are available since now in our limited edition section.
OBNUBIL: Hey Luca, could you give us a bit of background about you, your education and work? What originally made you want to become an illustrator / artist?
BLESSEND: I started illustrating in high school. I was obsessed by cover albums and metal logos. After a short period of time I immediately started working on personal visions and imagery. Since the beginning, I was searching for something closely connected to morbidity and classicism. Finally, after many tests and personal projects, I started to work in the music business.
OBNUBIL: How would you describe your approach? Could you tell us about your creation process and your technique? How was the evolution to your actual illustration style?
BLESSEND: My approach keeps being the same since the beginning. When I work for music bands I love to listen to their music before I start illustrating. I take steps like an "alchemist", this way I never get problems with inspirations. The style of the work depends by the clients ideas, usually I work out fine lines or dots and in the beginning the clients used to request dots, but nowadays, many clients give me a "white paper" and I have the complete control on the illustrations. Currently, I'm focused on many different techniques like pencils, but the linework is always my first choice.
OBNUBIL: For our collaboration you made a series of three amazing illustrations available since now as limited editions. Can you tell us more about these three artworks? What’s the story behind each?
BLESSEND: This is my first brand experience and I thought about creating something in chapters. The first illustration was about an alchemical figure with a double face, a sort of split personality or double soul. The second was about "The Ascension" concept, I used a winged figure reaching out to the geometrical figure that stands as "God" or the highness. And the third one is a little emblem; like those emblems, shields or symbols that represented some family houses in the past; framing the snake figure like a black soul. All three illustrations are numbered in the way of blood drops inside the letter O from Obnubil (visible in all three illustrations) and they are all metaphors. Also, there are always two elements to represent the collaborative brotherhood.
OBNUBIL: Who or what has been so far the biggest single influence on your way of thinking and creating?
BLESSEND: There are many things and many artists, but I think most of the time I am influenced by music in general. Listening to music is sometimes like having a third hand. From doom to black metal, I listen to bands like Electric Wizard and Salem's Pot, Venom or Celtic Frost. Sometimes even progressive Italian bands like Goblin.
OBNUBIL: What materials do you enjoy working with the most? Is there any specific element that you integrate into your work very often?
BLESSEND: First of all pencil, but also rapidographs. Yes, I have a snake obsession, in many of my works snakes are the main element. After the first pieces I made under the name “Blessend”, I remember that I often dreamed of black snakes and therefore they ended up being a dominant element. Recently, I thought about beginning to study these animals better, but here in Italy it is very difficult to have a protected species like this.
OBNUBIL: What would you say is your strongest and worst skill?
BLESSEND: I think my strongest skill is patience. And my worst skill… I'm not a lover of colors for my pieces, I just use color sometimes for few parts of an illustration and integrate them during the editing.
OBNUBIL: Has anything you have seen recently changed your views on art or design?
BLESSEND: I have my personal point of view about art and fortunately it had never changed. Nowadays, the method of sharing art is very different, but for me the way of working remains the same. I just take out the positive side of sharing work on the internet.
OBNUBIL: How do you think online design resources have influenced the art being produced today?
BLESSEND: They have influenced a lot in the creation process. Today it is very easy the create with templates and mockups and they are a big help for bands and their product promotion, for showing their pre-orders of shirts and vinyls. Many labels make use of this resources and many clients asked me for using them for presentations.
OBNUBIL: What are you currently fascinated by and how is it feeding into your personal work?
BLESSEND: Currently I'm focused on alchemical literature and the stories behind emblems. I love to study and remake them. Emblems connected to mythology or to alchemy, from a little emblem, I can get out a more elaborated one adding other figures and so on.
OBNUBIL: What are you passionate about besides illustrating? If you were not an illustrator, what might have been your profession?
BLESSEND: I play bass in a post metal band called Riten (well, right now the band is taking a time). I'm obsessed with music and I confess to be an old horror movies lover. Since I was a child I dreamed of working as designer or as a visual artist and I would probably work in the design world.
OBNUBIL: Thanks to your posts on Instagram and Facebook we observed a common taste of music, you are also a fan of our previous The Covenant members (Dehn Sora and Mathieu Vandekerckhove). How did you start working for bands?
BLESSEND: My first experiences were for my own bands, but later I started working for bands from everywhere. One of the first works I did under the name of “Blessend” was for a French band called “Le Seul Element”. They played with Dehn Sora some years ago. After this, many other bands started to ask me for works. I really love and respect "Church of Ra", and I'm really happy to be part of The Covenant with this kind of artists.
OBNUBIL: What do you think about our ”Molded in Blackness” concept (in our “About us” section)?
BLESSEND: I love Obnubil because it's not just an apparel, I think the concept behind the brand is awesome and you create special things with their own soul. “Honor the oath. Fear the omen.” I think you are perfect for people who love the color black and the darkness.
OBNUBIL: What’s the best piece of advice you have heard? And, what’s your personal motto?
BLESSEND: Fortunately, since I started illustrating, many other illustrators gave me support and advices. My own advice would always be "work hard". I don’t have a motto, but I think working hard is the first step to follow.
OBNUBIL: Thank you so much for taking your time answering our questions and for giving us more information about you! Is there anything that you would like to say to the readers of The Covenant?
BLESSEND: Support this awesome brand and the projects inside, few souls can read out of the lines. Black is the new light. Thank you B/
Photo taken by Carla Cabras.
Which of our t-shirts is he wearing in the pictures? Do you like it? It is... THIS ONE