Artist Gangster Doodles has taken to documenting these influential moments in his own colourful way. Armed with his trusty pens, post-it notes and minimalist style, he has created a body of work synonymous with hip hop and art by reiterating and further immortalizing classic icons.
It was only a few years ago that Marlon Sassy aka Gangster Doodles was scribbling down his drawings as a way of passing time. Before long, Tumblr and Instagram were flooded with his signature illustrations. While gaining notoriety amongst fans of lowbrow art, hip hop and pop culture, Sassy has already released his acclaimed Gangster Doodles (The Book) alongside an ever-expanding collection of prints, original works, exhibitions and even apparel. If that were not enough, Sassy has also recently dipped his toes into animation and debuted both his first ever music project, Gang$ter Music Vol 1.
We caught up with the man himself to talk about his evolution as an artist, what inspires him and what the future of Gangster Doodles looks like.
Yeah man! I created a short animation titled ‘King James’. It celebrates all things Lebron James. I went into the process pretty naive. I knew that I’d have to draw a fat stack of pics but didn’t realize how time consuming/labour intensive the process actually was. Luckily i was able to recruit Ruff Mercy to step in and give me a crash course. He came thru in a big way and helped me pull it off.
My original idea for the comp was to have 5-10 tracks from a few friends but over the course of 2 years that snowballed to 27 tracks. It’s been 1 of the most rewarding projects I’ve worked on to date. Every track i received for the comp was like running down the stairs on christmas morning and opening a present. They’ve all blown me away. Completely exceeded my expectations. I’m hyped for everyone to check it out and make up their own minds :)
If i was gonna go way way back I would have to say Homebase by DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince. I was 7 years old and copped the tape at a yard sale. Changed my life. Shout-out to Tha God Will Smith!!!
I used to work as a office manager for a production company In Vancouver. Part of my job was ordering office supplies for the office. The 4 things I ordered most frequently were pens, hi-lighters, sharpies & post-it notes. My desk was always a high traffic area for people copping a fresh stack of post-its or new sharpie. Drawing doodles on them happened naturally over the 9 years i was employed.
My drawing process is pretty loose. Whatever I’m listening to on that day or if something pops up that grabs my attention I usually gravitate towards it and try to find a interesting way to interpret the scene. Music is so personal that it really depends. I try to stay on the edge of what people want or request me to draw. Biggie/Beyonce/DOOM pics are usually cool…
All those moments u mentioned are some of my all time fav doodles. I luv the fact that i can quickly riff on a idea, scribble it down on a post-it and then throw it up on IG. It’s nice to switch up the content and flex my pop culture muscle rather than just focusing on hip-hop.
Over the past couple of years I’ve began actively working on a GD animated series. It’s still in the early stages but has been picking up steam and gaining traction. I’m hoping that I’ll be able to announce more info about the project sometime in the new year. I’ve also been working a graphic novel that I want to finish and release in the new year!
Find more info on Gangster Doodles here.