From concept art to a global sports community.

A little over a month ago I started to create concept art for racing kayaks, surfskis and the occasional SUP. What I began as a fun personal creative outlet for Instagram has instead connected me to a global community of athletes and enthusiasts in a deeply gratifying way.

It's interacting and collaborating with athletes in headline grabbing places like Israel, Iran, Syria, Yemen, Russia that I've enjoyed the most. Some are kids. Many are young athletes pursuing Olympic dreams and many others are in their later years remembering better years. All of them are living life to the best of their ability. Just like me. Just like you. Just like us. I've learned we are more alike then we are different. You can check out some of the art here:

Nicholas Cryder
Meet Achilles, The Armor Plated Knight Elk

The idea for an armor plated elk occurred to me about ten years before I found an opportunity to bring it to life, or in this case; back to life.

While working on interior concepts and fixtures for Lazarus Brewing, I brought up the idea to my brother Christian, the CEO. We decided to "borrow" one of our dad's old elk racks that he had hunted in the Beartooth Mountains of Montana, and was now hanging above the garage entry way at his cabin in said mountains. 

With an enthusiastic "YES!", we set about trying to pull something off in time for the brewery opening just four weeks away. It just so happens that another client, Red Oxx, uses dog tags for luggage hang tags. They had an enormous stash of dog tags that had been discarded due to small errors or price changes over the years. We partnered with a True Life Taxidermy in Laurel, Montana to prep the antlers and the foam mount, and then ship them us. From there the project took over my production studio, and consumed just under 20,000 tags and over 250 hours of manual labor between myself, and Christi Naler who had flown in from the bay area to help me execute the behemoth task (pun of the day, hurray!). 


20,000 Dog Tags. 250 Hours of Work. 5 All Nighters. 

An undisclosed amount of Coffee and Whiskey.