Meet Joe Perez, Art Director Behind Kanye & G.O.O.D. Music

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You may not know the name Joe Perez, but you've seen his work everywhere.

He's worked on Kanye's hit blog KanyeUniverseCity and was the lead art director at Kanye's company DONDA. He's done work with Kanye's "I Feel Like Pablo" clothing, Yeezus merch, Pusha T, Big Sean and pretty much all of GOOD music.

Joe Perez's full portfolio lives here.

The man behind some of the best graphics in the Rap industry sat down with me to discuss his latest endeavors and the meaning behind Desiigner's"Timmy Turner" cover art.

Read the full interview below.

 Desiigner's "Timmy Turner" Artwork.

Desiigner's "Timmy Turner" Artwork.

I wanted to know if you'd be down to let us know what some of those small details in the Timmy Turner art means?

With the written details, I incorporated current events, specifically the frustrations with injustice that a lot of us are feeling at the moment.

Hands up don't shoot is a reference to Michael Brown and Ferguson.

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79. Well, that's just a mystery for everyone. Ha

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That one is spelled backwards, it's a name of a city in Louisiana.

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And No, yes, no was one of the first conversations I had with Kanye back in 2008. He told me as a black man he's heard "NO" more than anything else and he didn't want to hear anything that related such as "can't , couldn't, etc." It was a story that had an impact on the way I looked at society.

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I'm an idealist. Any injustice in the world impacts me and in turn, impacts what I create.

How long did it take you to get from that initial thought to the cover that we all see today?

24 hours but when you get into that creative sphere time just melds together.

 KING PUSH, "Darkest Before Dawn"

KING PUSH, "Darkest Before Dawn"

When did you first start graphic design?

When I was 17 I started dabbling in Photoshop 5 in 1998. Professionally not until 2011.

So you said you first met Kanye in 2008... How did the two of you meet?

I started working with him before I met him. I was brought on to manage and curate his blog Kanye Universe City. I curated the blog with Kanye. I found the content and Kanye would edit. A friend of mine, Toby Spellman, worked as his videographer. Ye needed someone with my skill set and my friend called me up. I spoke with Ye' and I started the next week. I met Kanye in person on the "Glow In The Dark" tour a few months later.

So I know you just recently left DONDA. Do you still plan on working with GOOD music in the future?

Yes. I consider the GOOD music artists family. Working with them is like going home. I just won't be exclusively working with them any longer.

Lastly, do you have any words of advice/encouragement for rising graphic designers?

Always follow your instincts. We all have a unique voice, use yours. Also editing is a tool that's more powerful now than ever. You don't have to post everything on social media.

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