Skip to main content

Meet Our Pioneer Illustrator: John Vogl

It has been a tradition at CreativeMornings to work with an artist in our community to create an illustration for the monthly theme.

October is all about Pioneer.

While the artwork speaks for itself, we wanted to get to know the artist on a personal level and introduce them to the creative community. We’re delighted to introduce you to…

John is an illustrator-designer-artist of sorts working in Denver, CO. The Bungaloo is a nonsense studio name he works under, because he thought his real name was boring, but The Bungaloo is just a one man operation. He draws most of his work by hand, in pen and ink, and it seems to feature an overabundance of birds, leaves, and trees. His dog, Loki, is not a very useful studio assistant, but still very sweet and cute.

How did you get into illustration work?

I went to school for graphic design, but ended up illustrating most of my projects as much as possible. It wasn’t until after college that I started making a lot of gig posters for bands that I really dove into trying to develop a style and take illustration much more seriously.


At what point in your life did you realize that illustration was your calling?

I think I always knew, in some form or another, that illustration was what I really wanted to do. It’s always been something that I love spending my time with, and viscerally responded to in other’s work. I guess it’s always felt like a very natural fit for me, much more so than anything else I’ve tried.


How would you define ’Pioneer?’

Breaking expectations, in some form or another.

Who’s a pioneer that you admire and why? How have they influenced your life?

Jay Ryan. He’s an incredible artist who is the earliest and strongest influence that got me to doing the work I am today, and I know of countless other contemporaries who feel the exact same way. He is constantly pushing his work in terms of style, concept, and craft. I’m stealing this observation from a friend, but, if aliens came to earth and said “Show us what an Artist is” you would give them Jay Ryan.


How has your work evolved over time and what were some influences that caused it?

It’s changed a lot, thankfully, and continues to do so. I’m absolutely motivated and inspired by a variety of contemporary illustrators, working in an array of styles. If I were to name a few, Aaron Horkey, Teagan White, Edward Kinsella, Ken Taylor, Mike Mitchell, and Randy Ortiz all keep me very dissatisfied with my own work, but also very motivated to do better work and evolve. I’ve also been working more so in a mix of digital and traditional illustration, which has opened up some new avenues for experimentation, something that I’d like to push myself to continue to do more of.


What advice would you give to fellow illustrators?

No one, not your favorite illustrator or artist you’ve ever seen, was that way right out of the gate. Not even close. It takes time, dedication, passion, and a tolerance for failure and rejection. Everyone can improve and grow in their work, complacency is a killer. But, keeping all that in mind, there is no substitute for hard work, and you will see the fruits of your labor.


Tell us something about yourself that we can’t find on Google.

My middle and index toes on both feet are slightly webbed, it looks like I have baby toes. They’re weird.


You can see more of John’s work on his website, Instagram, and Twitter.

*Crickets* Sign in to add a comment.