Fan Scene Interviews David Archuleta Graphic Artist R4D

If you’re an active member of the Archuleta Community you’ve seen his work. His graphic depictions of David Archuleta have earned him the respect and admiration of fans worldwide, including David himself! R4D, also known as Rabid4David, first started creating his David Archuleta artwork in April of 2008. R4D quickly developed a rabid following of his own, as fans began noticing his uncanny ability to capture the emerging personality of this young star on his digital canvas. R4D’s work has matured right along with David and today, more than seven known David Archuleta fan sites including Fan Scene feature one of R4D’s custom banners on their home page. As well known as Rabid has become in the community Fan Scene was surprised, to say the least, that no one has ever “sat down” with him for an interview. We made the request and Rabid graciously accepted.

Fan Scene: First of all, Rabid, thank you for accepting our invitation. For the interview do you prefer we refer to you as R4D, Rabid, or James?

R4D: Thank you for for inviting me. Please call me James.

Fan Scene: James, can you give us a little background on yourself like where you’re from or where you live?

R4D: I’m from Manila, Philippines .

Fan Scene: Everyone, including myself, is so enamored with the work you do. How long have you been creating digital art? It’s fantastic.

R4D: I’ve been doing digital art for quite some time (2 years) but mainly it’s work-related like layouts for brochures, posters and ads for the company I’m working for. We actually have a graphic artist but due to the volume of work I sometimes pitch in to help. I also do freelance work every now and then.

Fan Scene: What digital imaging software do you use? Photoshop? PSP? One of my friends is an amateur digital artist and she was very impressed when I showed her some of your work.

R4D: Photoshop CS3 Extended is my weapon of choice.

Fan Scene
: Did you teach yourself Photoshop or have you had any sort of formal training such as graphic design? How did you get so good at this?

R4D: I’m self-taught. I started out by reading a few how-to books on Photoshop and perused online tutorials.

Fan Scene: James, why and at what time did you decide to start creating your David Archuleta artwork?

R4D: I think it was in April right after I saw him perform the last song during the Idol Gives Back episode.That’s when I got inspired and created my first David artwork.

Since then I’ve been making artworks of David one after the other.

Fan Scene: How many fan sites that you know of – because I’m sure there are many more you may not be aware of – are using your work in their banners?

R4D: Below are some of the sites that I know of that are using my artwork:

Fanscene: By the way, I want to thank you again for creating the banner for us here at Fan Scene. We’ve received lots of compliments on your work!

R4D: You’re welcome. Anything for our David. πŸ™‚

Fan Scene: James, what’s the most challenging aspect of deciding what picture of David to use to compliment the emotion you’re trying to convey with the graphic?

R4D: I decide on what pic to use based on its character and the emotion it evokes and from there the look, feel and theme of the whole piece follows. Visual echoing. I guess the only question or challenge is, will the fans like it? I remember when Fanblast posted my two Angel pics…


unfortunately, some found them creepy and even went on saying that I’m portraying David in a negative way. Needless to say FB had to take these down because of the deluge of negative comments.

Fan Scene
: Really? I’m surprised to hear there was a negative reaction from some fans. The two angel pictures are among my favorites. I’ve been wondering how you make these. When you’re creating images like this, do you create the background designs from scratch using the tools in CS3 or do you sometimes clone from other images, or how does that work?

R4D: I sometimes use free stock images especially the ones with a landscape background and I try to use other elements to improve and enhance the overall image. I also use brushes and textures to complement the background. Cloning comes into play when I retouch cropped pics of David.

Fan Scene: I’m interested because Photoshop is somewhat of a hobby of mine. I’ve never come close to creating images like yours but I’m trying, lol. What technique do you use most to separate David from the other elements in the original image? For instance: The magic wand, lassos, channels, or a combination. This is one of my major obstacles. The extractions you get are so clean.

: I worship the pen tool. Hands down it’s the most accurate selection tool there is and makes the cleanest selections. But when I’m rushing, I usually use the magic wand or masks selections.

Fan Scene: Do you create other types of artwork or is this your main passion?

R4D: Well besides David, I create mainly marketing collateral like brochures, invitations,layouts for ads, journals, newsletters and posters.

Fan Scene: Has David or his family ever commented on your artwork?

R4D: Yes. I was able to send David a compilation of some my artworks to him with the generous help of Tes, a Filipina Archie. She went all the way from Manila to see David at the Wilkes Barre concert. She gave it to David at the after party and he was totally aghast lol! joke! He thought they were cool. He also signed another copy of the book for me.*thank you very much David!*
Also, i’d like to thank again Bianca of TeamArchie,Archu_Adorable, Shelly Shular, Oystar, Freo, Xeno,Rightsaidcat, Fa3rygirl and Yantazi for showing David a print out of my artwork. Without them, David would not have probably seen any of my artwork.

Fan Scene
: Everyone seems to have their own personal favorite R4D work. I love the one you donated for the Team Archie auction. What’s your personal favorite piece of R4D artwork?

R4D: This one.

Its simple yet dramatic. Ethereal without being too perfect. The original pic only showed his face and was cropped so I had to “grow” the upper part of the head and combine this with another pic (the black leather series).

Fan Scene. Amazing. How long does it take to complete a typical work?

R4D: It takes me about 2 hours depending on the complexity of the art.

Fan Scene: Okay, this next one’s random. How long have you been a DA fan and what’s your favorite song?

R4D: I instantly became a fan when he sang WOTWTC Hollywood Audition. I knew right then and there that he will definitely go places and win the whole thing. My favorite rendition of David is CRAZY. My favorite songs of David are My Hands and A Little Too Not Over You.

Fan Scene: Yeah…David grabbed the world’s attention right away with that first audition! And his new songs are fantastic. I’m really growing fond of ALTNOY.

Do you have a website, James?

R4D: Yes, it’s

Fan Scene: Is your work available for purchase?

R4D: You mean the David artworks? No, I don’t sell them. Unless someone commissioned me to do one for their own collection or anything not David – related. Otherwise, just about anyone can download my stuff and print them out as they wish.

Fan Scene: How can interested parties contact you?

R4D: They can email me at πŸ™‚

Fan Scene: Well, James, I know you’re busy so I’ll let you get back to work creating all the wonderful David Archuleta artwork for us fans to enjoy. We really appreciate you taking the time to talk to us. I’ve seen your work around the Web for some time now and I’m really happy I finally got to meet the person behind the pictures, lol.

R4D: Thank you. It was nice meeting you too. πŸ™‚

*Note: The above work is James’ newest art and is currently the banner for his website! You may click on any image in this post to view it in its original size. Your comments are welcome.

Fan Scene would also like to take this opportunity to formally welcome two new writers to our website. Amy from SnarkyArchies will be posting for us from time to time, and Lisa, also known as soundscene if you visit the IDF forums has joined us as well. Lisa recently posted an extremely helpful collection of information titled, “Billboard, Mediabase and David Archuleta: The Definitions” on her SOUNDSCENE Page. Please take a moment to welcome both Amy and Lisa to Fan Scene. πŸ™‚

Special thanks to Jennifer Barry’s husband, Christian, for his help with our CSS coding problem!


~ by archuletafanscene on October 20, 2008.

31 Responses to “Fan Scene Interviews David Archuleta Graphic Artist R4D”

  1. I’ve always loved James’s work!
    And I remember when he first posted it on fanblast(the angel ones)
    It was really weird how fans took it the wrong way with the darker angel one. It’s beautiful.

  2. Thanks for this great interview.

    I really love R4D artwork. He is very creative; he is able to show David’s magical and beautiful essence through his artwork. I am so happy for James that he was able to give David some of his artwork. I’m sure David loved it.

    Congratulations James. We thank you for sharing your beautiful work with us.

  3. great interview and amazing artwork!!

  4. What a great idea to interview R4D James!! Good questions too.

    I was a huge fan of the Angels..especially the sepia tone one. I had just heard “Angels in the Alleyways” and thought..this graphic is Perfect!

    James you could sell your David artwork in a heartbeat but I am impressed that you chose to consider your creations a labor of love.

  5. I couldn’t believe it when I heard no one had interviewed him before. I like that angel picture too. I had it as my background on MySpace for a while!

  6. OMG!!! It’s my very own idol, Rabid in the flesh! Thank you to FanScene for interviewing the most interesting, talented graphic artist known to mankind. Rabid, you were put in this world to create David artworks for the rest of us ordinary folks. Thank you come again! πŸ˜€

  7. Rabid! ROFLMAO over your own comment! Thank You, Rabid / James, for richly blessing us with David artwork. You are indeed David’s most outstanding fan and soon-to-be David’s BFF. With ArchuLove, your biggest fan – Larissa / yantazi

    Fan Scene – Thank You so much for doing this awesome interview with James! I even picked up some Photoshop tips along the way haha.

    That black David artwork that Rabid cited as his favorite is also one of my personal faves!!!

  8. Lol, hey I learned a lot from talking to James! I’ve never used the pen tool before but now I’m going to spend my weekend getting acquainted with it. I spent (i’m ashamed to tell you how much money) on a Photoshop class at a Tech School and we NEVER used it in class!

  9. Oh my gosh! James is a Filipino then? I’m so proud of him. I actually use his works as my wallpaper. He’s very talented like our David.And I love his favorite too.

    A proud Filipina here.

  10. Hey. also uses James art works. He got a real deal talent. I love his works. I’m so proud that he’s a Filipino. (He is, right?)

    Way to go James.

  11. Todd, thank you very much for the interview.

    Larissa, rabid for r4d – that’s not me. πŸ™‚

    Yep, Filipino here.


  12. What a great interview! We get to know you better, James! Haha! I love all your stuff! One of them always end up as the wallpaper of my laptop. Haha! Great job! You are awesome! πŸ˜€

  13. James, I’m so so so sorry I mistook “rabid for r4d” for you. You’re a humble guy and you wouldn’t have said that about yourself. My deepest apologies again…I got dizzy with overexcitement from reading the interview…There’s so much “rabid” and “r4d” floating around LOL. *Slaps myself* A Thai Archie actually used my name “larissa” to vote for Crush on a popular Thai radio station; talk about an identity confusion!

    Todd – When are we going to see some David artwork from you? πŸ˜‰ How about demonstrating those skills picked up from Photoshop class and the interview with James, for our visual enjoyment? πŸ˜€

  14. Great interview! It’s nice to read about the person behind the famous artwork. Love your work, James! Keep it up!

    And I agree with Larissa, Todd. You should totally create something David related and post. That would be amazinggg.

  15. James! i love you so much! Thanks for including me in your interview! hahaha! but i have to say, it was a pleasure and an honor to be bringing your work to David! He really loved it! And he spent a lot of time with me just browsing over your amazing work! He was like “ohhhs” and “awwws” and “awesome!” all the time! and I am proud to be a fellow Filipino Archie! Missed you last time archienoys met. but looking forward to hanging out with you again. We have a lot of organizing to do for our David! Thanks, TODD, for the great interview with James! You guys rock! πŸ˜€

  16. Wow James I love your art so much I made sure I win the auction of your first donated work at TeamArchie. I will treasure your art when I get it.

  17. Rabid, on behalf of Fan Scene, Todd and myself., Thank You once again for taking time out of your busy schedule to sit with us and conduct this insightful interview that gives fans a preview of the artist behind all the wonderful David artwork out there labeled R4D.


  18. You’re welcome you guys. I was really looking forward to this interview and I wasn’t disappointed. Maybe after a few more lessons from James and a lot more practice I’ll post something up here I made myself. πŸ™‚


  19. OMG! James, we have the same favorite David artwork! It’s my wallpaper on my home computer. I love all your artworks and even have some printed professionally but the David profile in black leather really wowed me!

    Thanks Fan Scene for this awesome interview. Proud to be Filipino!

  20. Rabid: It was great to get to know you a bit better and to see that you value the art you create of David as labor of love and for the fans. I agree with the philosphy and I appreicate you for sharing your amazing and talented work with all of us. Todd, thanks for recognizing my husband, he was very flattered. David HAS the BEST fans and my husband got to witness it through this site. Thank YOU all. He is becoming more and more a fan OF David’s fans…if that makes any sense. Jennifer Barry

  21. Hi everyone…James wonderful, wonderful work!!! Very humble…you sound like someone I know very well…hm David! Todd…I don’t know you, but just started reading some of your articles…you guys are amazing…so much support for David! A big thanks from me…Go Big “D”…

  22. Hi Brett,

    I’ve heard a lot of good things about you from Jeff! Thanks for stopping by!! πŸ™‚


  23. Brett: Hey there. Glad you stopped by. I knew you would enjoy Todd’s site. It is fantastic and wonderful and Todd’s redesign of the site is very eye catching. Todd, I told Brett of your site the other day and he said he would check it out…and he did. Yea!!

  24. Thank you, Jennifer. πŸ™‚

    I have to say I’m very proud to be working with Orlando who recognized David’s talent for singing a long time ago.

    Also, I’m thankful for the new friends we met last summer, and, even more recently here on Fan Scene. We’re very excited to hear from Brett and it’s good to know he’s a fan of R4D!! James is a gifted artist who should be noticed for his good heart, maybe even more than for his amazing talent.


  25. I teared up at Todd’s comment that James should be noticed for his good heart, even more than his talent. I’d like to think that as big fans of David Archuleta, we have some of his qualities, values and virtues in our own selves. Maybe that’s why we are deeply attracted to David in the first place – his voice and his character. I’ve befriended Archies who are some of the most kind-hearted persons I’ve ever encountered.

    Orlando, if you’re reading this, I have to say you have a very good ear for music. I love the songs you play on FHR Radio.

  26. You’re all bunch of sweet people. I’m tearing up just reading your comments. Brett?? Oh yeah…it’s you. The big guy who never falters to help the Archuletas. And Jenny…yeah…don’t try to figure out though. Hehe…you don’t me guys. I’m just a crazy lurker of everything about David love that’s why I know you guys.

    TODD, I’m a fan. A fan of snarky too. (I can’t believe this.) *sniff*

  27. Oh forgot to put my name again…that’s me just up there.

  28. […] Fan Scene held an exclusive interview with Rabid back on October 20, 2008, you can read about it at: […]

  29. he so cute

  30. ii dol ko yan super galing kumanta:))

  31. idol kailan ulit consert mo sa pilipines aabangan ko po yan eheheh verry and verry cute:))

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