Featured Image for Bold, Bright and Beard-obsessed: we interviewed illustrator Mulga The Artist

Bold, Bright and Beard-obsessed: we interviewed illustrator Mulga The Artist

Joel Moore, a.k.a Mulga, is an Australian illustrator, artist and poet whose work is unfailingly mental yet marvellous. We’ve written about him before, but now we’ve interviewed him!
read our original post about Mulga The Artist.

Have you ever worked on a bigger ‘canvas’ than the Bondi one you did recently?
The wall at Bondi was 6m x 3m and it is the biggest I have done so far. I haven’t done a whole lot of street art but I love the idea of going large. Going large in real life is another matter altogether, getting the scale right on a large size is something I find challenging. Fintan Magee is a local artist who does amazing large scale works.

How did the size of that wall affect your choice of artwork for it?
With a large size I like to keep it a bit simpler. I sketch it out on a piece of paper first and then translate it onto the wall. I have to restrain myself from adding too much detail otherwise it takes to long to finish.

Why beards? Why weird animals? Why, why, why? (by the way, we love it)
I like to draw bearded characters because they are intriguing and mysterious. Beards are a magical thing and throughout the history of Earth they have achieved extraordinary exploits that a non-beard could never have achieved. There is some magical power that gets unlocked when a beard chooses to adorn the face of a mere man. It is like the mystery of synergy that cannot be explained.

Perhaps the best medium to describe it is through the wonder of dance but we don’t have time for that here. Animals are great too and I really like the ones that are hairy and have beards on their whole head or body. The gorilla and lion are a couple of my favourite creatures as they have wondrous beards and are both supremely powerful and majestic creatures.

My wonder for gorillas was unlocked when I saw a big gorilla at Taronga Zoo. He was a truly excellent specimen.

What or who inspired you to draw and paint in the first place?
I have always loved creating and was drawing from a young age. I am definitely addicted to doodling and all though school my books were filled with scribbles and lines.

In the last 5 years I decided I wanted to earn a living from making art instead of an office job that I didn’t have a passion for. I wanted to love my job and making sweet art is now my job and I love it!

Tell us about your three favourite artists right now: be they local or from beyond Australian shores.
Low Bros are two German brothers who paint amazing geometric animals and scenes. Their art is so killer and I dig it big time.

Iain Macarthur is an illustrator from the UK, and he makes amazingly detailed black and white artworks of animals and birds among other things. I love the patterns and detail in his work.

Stacey Rozich makes awesome watercolour/gauche pieces of crazy brightly coloured characters and beasts. Really great stuff.

'Death From Above' by Mulga
Mulga The Artist at work
'Bear Hat Bob' by Mulga
'Eden the Elephant' by Mulga
'Captain Gorilla' by Mulga
'Jolly Joel' by Mulga
'King Bruce' by Mulga
'Magic Lion' by Mulga
'Harley the Hipster' by Mulga