Scott Robertson

Scott Robertson is an illustrator who isn’t afraid to explore the dirty underbelly of society. He’s a prolific creator with a knack for making layered imagery with a street art style.  Although he’s busy cutting cloth for corporate suits, he still manages to find time for porn and answering our questions on creating sexually charged images.


DIY: What aspects of your work do you think define you as an illustrator? Is there an emphasis on experimenting with different media, or are you more focused on delivery a specific “Scott Robertson” feel with your executions?

Scott: Things that define me are probably my homage to the ‘vulgar’ or as our Dutch agent used to call the ‘dirty stuff’. One man’s meat (pun intended) and all that I guess

To be honest I have always been a bit ‘lazy’ in a way when it comes to illustrations, generally have far too many ideas to begin with. Plus I want it to be the best thing I have ever done (no pressure) and I always seem to be doing the stuff at the very last minute, although this formula is mental it generally yields some really good results. Patience has always been a challenge since I was a wee lad, always wanting to see what the wings looked like on the spitfire before the cockpit paint was dry.

In terms of my work, I like to combine quite naïve work with very well seen or highly crafted stuff. I think there is a style that is mine and unique to me but I often fight doing work in that style in favor of not wanting to repeat myself. I am attempting to fight creativity less as it is a beast that just can’t be bested, these days I am attempting to try to dance with the behemoth without stepping on its toes (too much).

You can photograph just about anything but you doodle some tits or dare throw a cock in the mix, suddenly everyone is an art critic

DIY: There’s a definite random thought (sketch book if you like) feel to a lot of your work. How much of that is planned before you even start working on the piece? Or is it more of doing what looks or feels right while working through it?

Scott: Most times I have a vague notion of my destination but the vision is normally blurred around the edges. This makes the piece a journey and open ended so I just start doodling all sorts of stuff that relates to my train of thought. I then assemble it all on the computer and can finesse the colours etc. as I go. I really like to play with it and try stuff out before I settle on a finished result.



DIY: How and why did the alias Dirty Sanchez come about? What’s the difference between Dirty Sanchez and Scott Robertson, apart from a smelly mustache?

Scott: Dirty Sanchez takes care of illustration dirty work, I am the corporate janitor. Every hero needs a villain.

DIY: What do you enjoy about creating sexually charged images? What are you hoping to make people think when they are confronted with these ‘unconventional’ and occasionally sordid scenarios?

Scott: Beside the fact that I flat out like to draw them?

People are mostly full of shit and like to pretend to be something they are not a lot of the time. My feeling on sexuality is that is a fluid animalistic passion that fuels our yang drive for just about everything. As humans we need to accept all parts of us, this humanism includes our wanton desires that hollow us out within our satin lined secret world. I believe that somewhere between arousal and orgasm lies an essential part of the true self, who you really are. This is all part of duality which is the quintessential experience of our limited frequency we call reality. I always say there is no harm in doing anything as long as it does nobody any harm.

People often find drawing something way more ‘filthy’ for some reason. You can photograph just about anything but you doodle some tits or dare throw a cock in the mix, suddenly everyone is an art critic (ask Brett Murray). These reactions are dishonest in my opinion and just the masses being used to police the herd by making sure we all tow the line. Free thinkers are just not what ‘society’ needs, we need clones who will easily be influenced and do as they are told. That’s better – good sheeple.

I suppose in essence I am just reminding people that it is a part of us and we should accept it. Most of us were injected into this world via acts we’d rather not talk about. Being harvested and fertilized in a laboratory, gene spliced and cryogenically frozen for some later date is just not the work of mother nature.

I would say that it is that honesty that may get people annoyed or ‘shocked’. For me it is not always about the blatant although this may be seen to be the case. Often it is the hidden moments, the subtle nuances of the content or scenario, the image is often part of something deeper even if the viewer gets stuck on the nipples.


DIY: On a broader topic, why do you think a fair chunk of Durban (and South African) illustrators are happy to just play it safe and comfortable with birds, animals and humans with long arms than try and explore the more erotic and sexual sides of drawing and art? The ‘pink’ sides of it if you like.

Scott: Maybe you get more work doing birds and animals but it is less fun in my opinion although I do love a nice bird. Conrad Botes and Anton Kannemeyer really showed that us that anything was possible, I am certainly no pioneer.

DIY: What practice exercises do you believe are important in order to improve and maintain the quality of your work?

Scott: Keep you eyes sharp and your ego in check. Ego is the road to ruin. The more you draw the better you get. I don’t draw nearly enough by far – I blame Sanchez, you fucker!

DIY: Kim mentioned in our interview with her that your personalities as illustrators conflicts with your work as designers. How so? What’s been the biggest hurdle separating your personal and corporate work from one another?

Scott: Well one is about self expression and marching to your own moral chorus. Corporate stuff you have other peoples needs and goals to work with and claim them as your own. There is no real hurdle, it’s all about context.

DIY: Going on from the above. Are you ever tempted to send a final design through to the client that has any subliminal elements to it? Like a hidden shape or word? 
Scott: Hahaha, If I ever have I am certainly not telling. My illustrations have a lot of subliminal content, they are full of ‘hidden’ messages.


DIY: You are a self confessed font nerd, what advice can you give to up and coming typographers?

Scott: Get hold of some good typography books that explain the craft of typography. Learn it now while you are young (me, I am knocking on a bit). Know your dashes from your hyphens, strive to create good typography – don’t compromise.

Look around, study letters, draw them, experiment, play and have fun. Don’t try design a substitute for Helvetica on your first trip to the zoo, do a logo here, a headline there, take time out to make small things beautiful.

DIY: Your work was recently included in the Where It’s At publication which showcases a snapshot of South African design. In your opinion what is the current state of our country’s design scene and what outside influences are having a major impact on where it is headed?

Scott: It is really exciting I think there are some super talented peeps out there. Illustration should be
used more, it is a pity it is not. It would certainly be great if one could make a living from it.

DIY: Where to from now? Any exhibitions/exciting things happening in the near future on your front?

Scott: I don’t know, cutting cloth for business suits is keeping me pretty busy at present I barely have time for any porn. Ok that’s a lie, there is always time for porn. Seriously though I don’t have any tattoo parlor words of wisdom, I’d say stay true, keep your fire burning, get a passion (for something or someone). Wake up to the real world, ask for the truth – seek it out. In the words of an old man in a galaxy far, far away “Do or do not. There is no try”


7 Responses to “Scott Robertson”
  1. N says:

    Another quality interview. Nice stuff.

  2. Toy Toy says:

    cool review

  3. Jeff Goldblum's Cousin says:

    Dirty shit here.
    Tight work

  4. Mike says:

    Simple yet complicated.
    Awesome stuff man

  5. Trevor says:

    Scott you dirty boy.

    Scott is low key, and super talented,
    Would love to see more… and a website…

  6. Alexander says:

    Keep it dirty. Saved a lot of these. Keep the interviews coming!

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