What is your name? Where are you based?
My name is Jeana Hadley, I’m a graphic designer & illustrator based in the Outer Sunset Neighbourhood of San Francisco, right in the corner where the Golden Gate Park meets the Pacific Ocean.
When did you come to San Francisco and from where? I moved here with my husband from Zurich, Switzerland almost 6 years ago.
What is one of your favorite places or things about San Francisco or the Bay Area? I really love the neighborhood I live in. Even though it’s part of the city it feels more like a sleepy beach town. There are numerous locally run cafes, restaurants and shops and the beach and park are nearby.
Please tell us a little about your work for el Lokal in Zurich. How long have you been contributing to that space, what role(s) have you played there over the years and what role do you play for them currently? Before moving here I was managing a restaurant/bar/concert venue called el Lokal in Zurich. I started out part-time behind the bar and waitressing in 2005, then joined their management in 2007 where my responsibilities ranged from daily business to booking and promoting music shows and designing show posters and other promotional material including the venue’s website. I also designed, produced and published multiple R.E.S.P.E.C.T. magazines themed on the venue, it’s artists, employees and regular guests.
After moving to San Francisco I continued to do design work, booking and concert organization for el Lokal from here, and as of today I’ve created about 100 posters and put on well over 900 live shows for the 250 capacity venue.
What are some of your favorite music venue(s) here and what do you like about them? If you could book bands for anywhere in the city once a month where would you do it (real life place or made up fantasy place). Basically what’s your dream situation for your booking skills? There are a lot of amazing venues in San Francisco, I’m still discovering them all. The Chapel, The Bottom of the Hill and The Great American Music Hall are at the top of my list, but my absolute favorite venue by far is the Lost Church. With it’s 50 odd seats it’s quite small and I really love the intimacy. That would definitely be the spot I would want to book for.
You are the designer at Sealevel studio and a lot of your illustration work has a nautical theme. What’s your relationship to the ocean? What draws you to this theme? I’ve always been drawn to water, especially the ocean. There’s just something fascinating about its vast and unknown depths.
Water can overcome any obstacle by taking on whatever form necessary, from a steady drip or a gentle trickle to a powerful tidal wave. It can’t be stopped. I find this incredibly inspiring. To me, water is the ultimate symbol of creativity.
The nautical theme is inspired by el Lokal, which is also affectionately called «the last island by the Sihl», referring to the river which runs out back. The venue is filled to the brim with maritime trinkets and tidbits and serves as a port where regulars, travelers and all sorts of sailors and lost souls are welcome. There’s a certain melancholy attached to the sea and all things nautical, something nostalgic, a longing for the unknown. I try to weave these sentiments into my work, especially as it pertains to my monthly posters for el Lokal.
What are your thoughts on collaboration? How do you benefit from collaborating with others?I’ve been working mostly independently over the last decade, developing and refining my personal visual language on my own terms. But in the times I do collaborate, I have always found it to be an exciting and enriching experience, especially when new mediums and techniques are involved. Being exposed to someone else’s perspective and approach encourages me to look at things from angles I may not have considered on my own. This, in turn, has a positive influence on my approach to new ideas and future work.
Can you tell us a little about your experience creating the “Whale Magic” woodcut reduction print at Sunset Paperworks? Surprises? Highlights? Lowlights? Thoughts on the woodcut reduction process, printmaking or Sunset Paperworks? Initially, I was a little intimidated transitioning from digital illustration to working with material and tools that were way more stubborn and unforgiving. Also, the fact that with this technique there is no going back once something is carved was a kind of scary. I’m used to having complete control over every little detail of my art, so this was a great learning experience for me in letting go of that control a little and embracing perceived mistakes. Nathalie is an extremely talented, knowledgeable and patient teacher, and I feel very fortunate to have had her to show me the ropes on Woodcut reduction. There were a few instances where something didn’t go quite as intended, but I think in the end these slight deviations really added to the character of the design and I’m very pleased with the final results. I had a fantastic time during the whole process, and on a personal note: I really enjoyed the opportunity to spend a concentrated amount of time with Nathalie, getting to know her better while working on the print and deepening our friendship.
What are you working on now? And/Or What projects are you preparing for coming up? And/Or what project would like to do next? I just finished up the October show poster for el Lokal, and am preparing to work on an album cover for a musician friend Hank Shizzoe which I’m very excited about.
I also hope to work on many more prints at Sunset Paperworks in the near future :)
We are excited to see what music and art projects you get into in the future and we’d love to have you back!