Enjoy Tour de France with the fantastic artwork by Daniël Roozendaal

It must be crazy to set foot in Utrecht last weekend. The monument in the sporting history, Tour de France, has started its 2015-edition in this wonderful city – the middle point of the Netherlands and Amsterdam’s sister. While the streets are brimmed with cycling enthusiasts, the walls are covered with gorgeous artwork. Daniël Roozendaal, an Utrecht based visual artist, has done his hometown’s and nation’s pride justice with two huge, impressive mural portraits of the two Dutch winners in the history of Tour de France.

Photo courtesy of Street Art Europe.

Joop Zoetemelk and Jan Janssen must be very proud. Look at their smiles.

Photo courtesy of Street Art Europe.

We love the artwork no less. So we contacted Daniël to have his beautiful portraits streamed on Kuvva this week, and to chat about his passion for the niche combo of visual art and sports. Enjoy!

Hi Daniël! Please tell us something about who you are and what you are passionate about.

I’m Daniël Roozendaal, an Utrecht (The Netherlands) born, raised and based visual artist. I successfully graduated in 2009 with a BFA in illustration at Hogeschool voor de Kunsten Utrecht. From that moment on I have been working on both autonomous as well as applied projects, for which I mostly use traditional materials and analogue techniques in combination with digital editing. My autonomous projects work as soil for my applied work. Inspiration can come from different places, but mostly from everyday experiences, interaction with friends or the news.

But a theme that has become most important over the last year or two is sports. I’ve always been a sports-fan, and every now and then I made an illustration on that theme. But after the winter Olympics in Socchi I really made a project on it: a series of illustrations depicting the winners of the different disciplines. Also I used the World Cup in Brasil last year as an inspiration: I made a series about key-moments in Dutch football history, and made a series of the goals that the Dutch scored during the tournament in Brasil. I found out I really like this kind of niche of combining illustration/art with sports, and hope I can continue developing it in to something bigger and better.

Besides the inspiration I have, I also really like to get assigned themes. This creates a kind of limitation that you’re sometimes not familiar with, but therefore makes it more interesting to work with.

Could you share some insights into your current illustration style?

My current illustration style is becoming more and more stylised and sometimes towards the abstract. A few years ago I mostly drew pretty realistic drawings with pencil on painted ‘stains’, so to say. After a while this method didn’t really please me anymore, also because of the labour-intensity of it. So I started to experiment, and got the idea of making structures/patterns out of the realistic drawings I made before, of which I then took round shaped cut-outs to create new illustrations. I was pleasantly surprised by the outcome of that. I could work quicker and the images got simpler and clearer. Since then I’ve been developing this style, trying out different materials in handwork, or making it more stylised, ‘clean’ and simple on the computer.

We really love your work for Tour des Arts. How did you come to that final look? What are some tips for working with portraits, especially huge mural ones?

The two portraits I painted for Tour des Arts (Jan Janssen and Joop Zoetemelk, the only Dutch winners of the Tour de France in history) are from the Têtes de la Course series. I already had that series, so that saved me some time in making the design for the wall.

I created the portraits from photo-material: I printed the photo several times, in black an white and a very low opacity. Then I drew the round shapes over each photo, using a different shade of light as a guideline for the ‘blobs’ on each photo. After that I scanned those photo’s with blob-shapes, and put the different shade/blob layers together and gave them different colours. Of course some fine tuning etc. finished each portrait.

For the mural I projected the two portraits onto the wall with a huge beamer. I made line-drawings out of the portraits and traced those lines with crayons, creating a huge colouring picture, which I then had to fill in with paint and brush.

How do you think being featured on Kuvva will help you?

I hope that more people will see my work through Kuvva, and that that could lead to more assignments. As I said earlier, I really like the boundaries of an assignment and entering unknown territory, so hopefully somebody likes my work enough to ask me for a fun project!

Besides that, I of course hope people just like these portraits. The portraits are for sale as prints as well, on A3, A2 and A1 size. You can send an email to info@danielroozendaal.com if you’re interested.

And last but not least: do you have any future projects in mind? Or any new themes or motifs you want to incorporate into your work, but haven’t had the chance yet?

Because this Tour de France project just ended, I don’t really have something new and big planned yet. But I do work on smaller things as flyers, posters and illustrations etc. One slightly bigger thing I am working on is a portrait series of famous people from my hometown of Utrecht.

Every now and then I make some abstract work by hand with different materials, in this way I sometimes discover new things. There are some aspects in those works I want to do some more research on, and try if they also work in a figurative way.

Thanks for the chat Daniël!

Have a look at all the work Daniël has done on his website www.danielroozendaal.com, or just scroll down to see all the amazing portraits Daniël has for licensing on Kuvva:

Fausto Coppi

Miguel Indurain

Lance Armstrong

Joop Zoetemelk

Jaques Anquetil

Jan Janssen

Greg Lemond

Gino Bartali

Eddy Merkx

Alberto Contador

Bernard Hinault

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