Jean-Paul Leconte’s site qrcanvas.nl has some amazing QR Code Art! Read the following interview and then check out his fantastic site.
Brief intro to who you are / what you do.
My name is Jean-Paul Leconte. I’ve got a Dutch company that provides graphic design, web design, commercial photography and illustrations. Those are my products and at the same time I like to work at al kinds of challenges like QR code designs and ambigrams.
What’s your favorite piece of work that you have created?
My favorite design is the QR code in math theme. Funny thing about it, it’s all nonsense. It doesn’t matter because the only thing you pay attention for is the formula behaving like a QR code. One of my favorite features about a designed QR code is the trigger that invites someone to test it. Once you recognize the QR code it’s hard to resist a test if it works. The more a QR code design gets alienated from it’s original shape the more someone feels a trigger to test it. This math theme does that in my opinion.
What are you working on at the moment?
At this moment I’m working on a design for a Dutch car company. This company is looking for a big canvas with a creative design that fits the company’s style, colors and logo.
How are you sales and rentals?
It’s hard to be honest. Even though I’ve started just a couple of months ago I didn’t realize it would take some time to get my first orders. Right now I’ve got two orders for sale and none for rent. First thing on my agenda is to make rental pages for all the designs I’ve made so far. Priority right now is to build a nice portfolio with original designs. After that I’ll focus on sales and promotion.
Do you ship worldwide? Shipping Cost?
All my designs can be send in high resolution by mail to anyone who rents or buys a design. It’s more interesting to print a design on location because it saves time and money, regardless where the design will be printed on. When someone orders a real painted canvas, shipping cost will be discussed in the total order price.
Designing is also a hobby so it doesn’t hurt to spend a lot of time in making my own creations. I also love to cook, to play guitar and hanging out with my girlfriend and cats.
What (other) hobbies do you have?
I’m a real movie geek, Apple fanboy and gadget freak.
What would people be surprised to learn about you?
That I’m an autodidact. Everything I know about graphic design, webdesign, Photography, playing the guitar etc. I’ve learned myself. I had to quit my study of graphic design early and after that I was dedicated to finish it myself. After that I discovered a lot is possible as long as you want it. All you need is the web to find whatever you need to know.
First of all, it’s great to read a blog like qrcartist.com. QR codes aren’t sexy or exiting and a lot of people think it’s something boring for nerds. I’m sure it doesn’t take long before we all get used to QR code designs. It’s great to have blogs like this to get inspiration from and to show the rest of the world what’s possible. As an Apple fanboy I also like to visit Apple blogs like Macrumors.com and 9to5mac.com.
Where else do you sell your work?
Qrcanvas.nl is the only place online where you’ll find this products. I also like to share work on Flickr, tumblr and Deviantart. From there people can find me by visiting the website address mentioned in the credit.
Where else can we find you? (Blog, website, twitter, facebook etc)
I’ve got a lot social media profiles (Facebook) where I show my work. Still, most important are my two sites qrcanvas.nl and spreadtheword.nl. Those are my company sites where you can find all kinds of artwork.
What else should we know about you and your work?
I hate it to copy stuff. I try to be original and that’s hard. Sometimes it inspires me to go very deep and sometimes it’s just one big struggle you would love to give up. If you look at it that way, every design that I publish or share is some kind of victory. It really feels that way and it makes me hungry for more. That’s the drive behind most of my work. Especially when it comes to QR code design.
Do you have any tips or inspiring words for others?
Always test your design with multiple apps. I use at least five apps to test my artwork. Still, most QR scanner apps are crap. A lot of scanner code and the the technique itself is open source. That’s great but it also means that anyone can write some crappy app and put it on an App store. This is important to know before you trash a design because it didn’t work. Be sure you’ll use the right apps to test your designs. Second, be aware of the way a scanner works. Most scanners automatically adjust the contrast and sharpness. When you make a design with thin lines and a low contrast between foreground and background, you force the app to increase contrast and the thin lines in the design will be thicker. Tricks like that make a lot possible and helps to design something that doesn’t look like a QR code in the first place. Generate damage proof codes but make sure the url is short to keep the number of pixels in the QR code as low as possible. I use Google url shortener because it also provides statistics for every short url. This is a great service you can give together with the design itself.
Do you admire any artists / photographers? (Famous or not!)
I love the paintings of Phyllis Stephen. She really inspired me to think about the possibilities with contrast and color. When you look at her work, it’s hard to figure out witch pixel should be scanned like black or white. It’s almost invisible for humans but a scanner can read it perfect. That’s the boundary I was looking for. Banksy is a true hero. Who doesn’t know his work should really find out what he makes. It’s a genius mix of politics, creativity and taking advantage of a location.