Today, we have a special guest. His name is Nick , also known as blackriver35 on social media. He is a man with many talents and an HHKB fan! He is an artist who creates many artistic pieces including on canvas, digital form, and on electronic devices such as the HHKB! He was one of our first followers on social media and he has continuously amazed us with his artwork. I am delighted to share my conversation with blackriver35.
HHKB: Thank you for agreeing to be featured in our HHKB spotlight blog series. First of all, please tell us about yourself.
blackriver35: I am Nick and I am 23 years old. Many people know me as blackriver35 on the internet. In the last decade, I have really fallen in love with computers and I like to think that I have learned quite a lot about them during that time. Besides computers, I love drawing, painting and creating unique things that serve a functional purpose. You will find that most of my art recently has been on less traditional canvases like mice, speakers and keyboards. I find that these are things we see every day and the traditional “Stock” forms of them can get boring over time.
HHKB: We love your work station! It looks very functional while staying so stylish!
blackriver35: I like my space to be fresh and exciting, which is really why I like using vibrant colors when painting my electronics.
HHKB: We also saw on social media that you love cars!
blackriver35: Yes! I am really passionate about cars, specifically Hondas and older Japanese models. I am actually looking to import a car from Japan next year or so which is something I have wanted to do since I was a kid. Besides that, you might also find me juggling and watching movies from time to time. I find that these are great ways to de-stress which is super important to me.
HHKB: What do you do?
blackriver35: I recently graduated from Rochester Institute of Technology with a degree in Management Information Systems. Now, I am a full-time employee of Bayer Healthcare and I currently do System Design and Development work in the IT sector.
HHKB: Where do you live?
blackriver35: I live in Northern New Jersey. I have lived here my whole life.
HHKB: What are your favorite hobbies?
blackriver35: Building computers, building keyboards, drawing, painting, working on cars and juggling.
HHKB: We love your art work and how your art magic happens just about everywhere! On electronic devices, canvas, wall, digital form, and many more. Could you tell us what got you interested in art? What was your first art work?
blackriver35: I have always enjoyed art and drawing as far back as I can remember. When I was around 7 years old, I really liked drawing cars and rollercoasters for some reason. Ever since then, I have been drawing and painting, and trying new things with my art. However, it wasn’t until very recently that I felt like I was any good at what I do. I never really knew what to draw and my mind was always a little scattered. Now, I feel like I have finally found something that fits me and my style.
HHKB: How did you start designing on electronic devices?
blackriver35: I love art and I love technology so why not merge the two together? I started doing it because no one else really was. I wanted artists to start painting keyboards and speakers long ago, but no one ever did. Finally, I told myself I would start and ever since then, I have been painting on electronics for myself and others.
HHKB: What are your must-have items in your work station?
blackriver35: I would say everything is “must have,” but the three most important things besides a computer for me are my Sennheiser HD 58X’s, Multiple Ultrawide Monitors and of course, my HHKB Pro 2. I can’t live without them.
HHKB: What is your favorite part of the artwork you create?
blackriver35: I love how artwork projects one’s personality. Even if someone does not create their own artwork, their choice of the art on the wall at their own space tells a story. My favorite part about being an artist is seeing the art I make being used in someone else’s space. It puts a smile on my face every time someone posts something I made for them.
HHKB: What is the craziest project you have experienced?
blackriver35: The craziest project I have worked on would have to be the first mouse I painted. It wasn’t my hardest project or even my best work, but had the biggest impact on me personally. Ever since then, I have been way more confident in what I do. Not to mention all the positive feedback it has brought to me.
HHKB: What are the biggest rewards and challenges of being an artist?
blackriver35: The most rewarding thing is having someone tell you that they love what you do. It makes you feel really good to know that people support you and actually like your art. The biggest challenge is knowing how to price what you make. On one hand, you don’t want to overcharge people. However, you also want to make a decent amount of money for all the time and effort you put into it. You need to find a sweet spot, but it can be quite difficult to get there.
HHKB: Have you painted on your HHKB yet? If so, could we see them?
blackriver35: I actually just finished painting my first one. I have loved other painted boards in the past but felt like many of them took shortcuts when painting. I wanted to get it as close to perfect as I could without hurting the functionality.
HHKB: We have to ask. Is your favorite color purple?
blackriver35: Yes, it is. What gave it away?
Thank you, blackriver35 for sharing your exciting journey filled with your one-of-a-kind art projects! In It was definitely an exciting conversation to learn how electronic devices could be the source of inspiration for artists and blackriver35 chose HHKB’s minimalistic look as one of his artistic project.
In our next blog, he will share his unique take on Happy Hacking Keyboard!
Follow his art work here!