The artist's work is ubiquitous in the Seattle music scene, featured primarily on show posters and album covers, and in Capitol Hill's Arabica Lounge. C.M. is also one half of CMRTYZ, a local production company with Ty Ziskis that "loves to throw parties, hold art exhibitions, produce clothing, and put out records of our friends bands"(2012).
"Fungi Girl", a zine exclusive to Cairo for the month of May, is C.M.'s most recent exploration into the concept of psychedelia, illustrating one girl's adventure through a surreal world after taking hallucinogenic mushrooms. Coinciding with the Fungi Girl zine release are original works of art will be on display and for sale for the month of May.
C.M. recently stopped into Cairo for a chat, a cup of coffee, and an in-depth tutorial on navigating the Mushroom Necklace website. Check out our photos and interview below, and make sure to stop by on Thursday, May 10th for the release party!
Sneak Peek of 'Fungi Girl' zine art
What is your full name?
Carlos Michael Ruiz Bautista Dominguez Soto
Tell me about the new Fungi Girl zine.
Well, I've been working on my diary journal comic, which is really simplistic and straight forward. I've been thinking about illustrating one that was really complex and detailed. I thought it would be cool to have an art show around it too, that was a mix of Xerox and illustration. The concept of Fungi Girl was inspired a lot by Mushroom Necklace, Legend of Zelda, Fungi Girls the band, Brian Standeford, Devon Varmega, 1960's pop psychedelia, and early 90's druggie psychedelia. I've pulled from a lot of different influences while creating the zine, so the beginning of the process is kind of different from the most recent work.
How would you describe your personal artistic style?
Sort of like "bad thrash metal" kind of art, but with a lot more design theory to it. I feel like so much art design is so precise. Especially how you're taught in school: there is too much thought put into it. So if something is a little too polished in my art, I just like to rattle it.
What are some your favorite pieces that you have published?
I really like the Fungi Girls LP and the Deep Sht 7-inch covers I did. Also, this Jay Reatard/ Thee Oh Sees show poster I did for The Crocodile.
When did you first start designing posters?
In 2006, after I moved to Seattle. I moved to Seattle because I bought a Catheters record, so I went to a lot of Tall Birds shows because The Catheters were broken up by that time. I used to go to their all ages shows and I would just offer to make posters. The first poster I ever did was an Unnatural Helpers, Tall Birds, and The Ax show at The Funhouse.
How did you get started drawing?
We used to go to church several times a week when I was a kid and I would draw to pass the time. In high school I drew all the time because I was really into comic books and Marvel trading cards. I used to come home from school and watch the History Channel and draw for hours. You'd think I would be better at it by now.
Tell me about your tattoos.
I have a cat that I got for 20 dollars in Chattanooga, commemorating my first visit to the south, which was a grand old time. Then I got "DUDE" stick and poked by Rocky Banks when I was living in New York last summer. Then she tattooed a beetle on my other arm during SXSW this summer.
What keeps you in Seattle?
The weather. I like everything here…I like the people and the scene a lot.
Where are your favorite places to hang out in Seattle?
I like to go to 3 girls bakery in the market, Bimbo's on a slow night when my friends are working, The Streamline Bar in Queen Anne, The Smoke Shoppe in Ballard, and The Funhouse.
What are your plans for the summer?
I got no plans.
Where is your favorite place to do karaoke, and what are your favorite songs to sing?
I really like ggnzla karaoke at The Cha Cha. I usually sing Roy Orbison's 'You Got It' or Bruce Springsteen's 'Hungry Heart' or John Lennon's 'The Ballad of John and Yoko'.
What are you listening to right now?
Blasted Canyons. Shit, they're so good. My favorite local bands right now are Ponytime and Redbook. The Feelies are my rainy day record.
What are you working on for the future?
An installation for the NEPO House 5k Don't Run, something for the summer exhibition called 'The Record' at The Henry art gallery, my sine, and individual projects for Totokaelo.
C.M. also recently won our annual T-shirt design contest! Pick up a shirt on Thursday, sold exclusively at Cairo.