Tired of the constant change of customers, designers Tatyana Efimchuk and Anton Stashevich decided to start their own business and started printing posters that could take the place of carpets or faceless prints on the walls of Russian apartments. By trial and error, they managed to find a printing house in Moscow that could print posters of the right quality, and now they sell a dozen images a month. Next in line is the launch of a textile collection for the bedroom and bathroom.
with designer prints
DATE OF CREATION: November 2013
Start-up capital:10 thousand dollars
Exit the Central Department Store
Tatyana Efimchuk and Anton Stashevich
co-founders of the company
After moving from Omsk to Moscow for a long time, our paths with Anton did not intersect. I worked as a merchandiser at Mercury with RobertoCavalli, Tod's, BottegaVeneta, under the direction of Daniel Berg (Creative Director of TSUM. - NoteThe Village) designed the windows of the Central Department Store. From time to time she did interiors for photographing various magazines about repair and design. Anton was a television artist, art director at advertising agencies and design studios.
People of our circle are mostly freelancers. In the world of designers, very few people occupy the same position for a long time, mostly design work. Today you are inundated with orders, and what will happen tomorrow, no one can say with certainty. At some point, we were tired of such differences. So the thought of his business appeared.
The idea that the walls should not be decorated with carpets or magazine posters came to Russia recently. In the West, prints are very popular, but this segment is not represented here. The walls are decorated either with huge paintings, like in museums, or with faceless posters from IKEA. Reasonably priced, but at the same time, unique copyright items are very few. We decided to occupy this niche.
RazzleDazzle is a technique for geometric camouflage of surfaces. She illusory breaks the object, it is impossible to understand where it has a beginning and where is the end. In World War I, steamboats and planes were so decorated to confuse the enemy and prevent him from aiming. Now new cars are so decorated when they pass test tests on the highway so that the paparazzi can not understand the shape and size of the new items. The name reflects our concept: we break the correct composition, avoid emasculated prints.
Start of sales
The starting point is November 2013. The first month was the most expensive. Only the launch took 10 thousand dollars. We immediately realized that the online store is not our story, and began to look for a room. Renting 20 square meters in Artplay, along with cleaning services, the Internet, and utility bills, costs 40 thousand rubles.
In addition to renting, we had to pay for the mistakes that we made in the search for the best printing house. In Moscow, everything is tailored for the printing of advertising banners - it is simply unprofitable for owners to keep special equipment for posters, since this segment is not developed. We printed trial canvases, their quality did not suit us. Several times it was necessary to refuse the services of printing houses, because they broke the deadlines, someone did not fit the price. The printing house, which we finally settled on, had never encountered such orders before.
Work on pictures
Our method is compilation, mixing, collision of various stylistic and semantic elements. We make up some of the drawings ourselves, some from spy books from the 1950s, Soviet encyclopedias, even from matchboxes - each artist has his own library of favorite visual rarities.
Before we borrow a drawing, we check it for copyright. Further, if everything is clean, we scan, manually, with the help of a digitizer we finish the elements that blur when enlarged. We introduce some thing because it is blue, some because it is funny.
We do not proceed from the fact that we must sit down and draw a lily with a rooster. The introduction of a new element is always due to the feeling that something is missing: some kind of sound, meaning, so that when you look at the work, each person has something moving inside. Let someone be funny, someone sad. The purpose of art is to provoke emotions. Once, at an exhibition in St. Petersburg, a visitor looked at Two Birdies for a very long time. Then he called us and said: "Everything is fine here, just remove the beetle and the rosary." If you remove these things, there remains a correct, boring, understandable work with a geometrically verified composition. On the contrary, we want to get out of balance.
We purchase canvas for prints in the Netherlands, and the printing house was entrusted with the selection of colors. After printing, the canvas is covered with a special protective solution. This is necessary so that the print does not fade in a room where there is a lot of light.
So far, technically, the equipment of the printing house in which we print prints does not allow making them more than 150 centimeters in length. However, this size is also quite difficult to transport. The transportation of eight paintings with their plot, which can be put together in a large panoramic picture, in a restaurant on Prospekt Mira was a real special operation.
In addition to the digital study of prints, there is another direction - the creation of collections with the participation of famous artists. Recently, Eugene Otto Schmidt, a Russian illustrator and comic book artist who was wildly popular in America but for some reason not so unknown at home, made three prints for Razzle Dazzle. Apart from us, no one works with him in Russia.
The full production cycle of one print measuring 120 x 90 centimeters costs us about 10 thousand rubles. The cost of prints, depending on their size, varies from 25 to 30 thousand rubles. The most expensive prints - 50 thousand rubles - are presented in the exclusive collection of Schmidt.
We made it a rule not to sell more than five copies of the same picture. On average, every month 7-10 paintings are bought from us.
The poster is not for everyone
So far, we have a very narrow target audience. Mostly prints are interested in decorators who professionally decorate interiors and are looking for something else to surprise customers. In addition to our Artplay studio, RazzleDazzle prints are sold at Provence Air, DeepHouse, Roombox, Curations Limited LLC, and Sturdy Design.
When we see a space whose interior is suitable for prints - these are not necessarily furniture stores - we invite the owners to hang our works. If the picture is sold, the institution receives a percentage. In the first month alone, three works "left" from the walls of the cafe. People came to dinner, and left with our prints. Razzle Dazzle can be found at Gray's Bistro in St. Petersburg and at Look Like Hair Salon. Even if the print is not for sale, and the place has a lot of traffic, like, for example, the Click-boutique showroom, where we are also represented, just the fact that it hangs on the wall greatly enhances the recognition of our works.
Our customers are young people who know how to use the Internet. These are very well-worn people. If we had analogues of posters of other companies, they would have long noticed and exposed us. American The Oliver Gal has creative posters, but this is a completely different price category, as well as drawing technique, concept. IKEA posters are all the more uncompetitive, so for now we can sleep peacefully.
Very soon we plan to launch a textile line. You can apply drawings to lampshades, seats for chairs, pillows. Recently, our fan from Spain gave us some ideas. He really wanted us to print on his wooden drawers, and also ordered a curtain for the bathroom and bedding. Perhaps we will take on t-shirts and wallpapers.
PHOTO: Mikhail Loskutov