7 Questions With … artist and illustrator Matthew McDole

Matthew McDole | Photo by Gerry Cooper

Chances are, you’ve seen an illustration, graphic or painting made by Matthew McDole and his fellow coworkers at Mperfect Design.

The company has been creating logos, posters, album covers and graphics for hundreds of Louisville companies since 2002, including Kentucky Peerless, Louisville Public Media, Silver Dollar, Rye, the Buy Local Fair, Please & Thank You, Decca and many, many more.

McDole also designs tattoos for friends, and himself, and on Friday, May 10, he’s showcasing some of his artwork in his first solo show at Revelry Boutique Gallery. “Strawberry Mansion” will feature more than 100 of McDole’s illustrations and designs, some of which could easily be made into a tattoo, and some you may just want to hang on the wall and admire.

The artist prefers to work with acrylic paint on paper and wood, and the images in the exhibit range the gamut from love to mystery and macabre. To McDole, it was like playing house in his head.

Artwork by Matthew McDole

“I wanted the show to be about a place,” he tells Insider about the title “Strawberry Mansion.” “It was originally going to be a neighborhood, but then I switched to the idea of a smaller place — like a hotel or a trailer park. I always loved the word ‘mansion’ and remembered hearing ‘strawberry mansion’ a while ago, and it stuck with me.”

Just glancing at a handful of images from the exhibit, it resembles a catalogue of design suggestions you might find in a tattoo shop.

Simple yet creative sketches of one object — whether it’s Casper the ghost with a knife through his chest or a posh woman in a fur coat — that are both appealing and introspective.

For McDole, whether it goes on your skin or on your wall, it’s all just part of his wheelhouse.

“I wouldn’t say it’s on purpose, but (tattoo work) is definitely one of the many things that inspire me,” he explains. “I tattooed a bunch of stuff on my legs, and I’ve designed stuff for other people. I’ll design/draw anything anyone wants.”

“Strawberry Mansion” opens Friday with a free reception from 7 to 10 p.m. The exhibit continues through June 4. Revelry is located at 742 E. Market St.

Before McDole invites everyone into his “Strawberry Mansion,” we asked him some very important questions …

It’s all Thorogood.

What was your first concert?

George Thorogood and the Destroyers.

What could you give a 40-minute presentation on with absolutely no preparation?

Skateboarding, house plants, professional wrestling and a million other things. I’m obsessed with so many different things, and I could talk all day about any of them.

What job would you be terrible at?

Elevator operator or bellhop. Anything with elevators really.

What is your favorite restaurant or bar?

Please & Thank You.

Yes, we’ll take a cookie, please and thank you. | Courtesy of Please & Thank You

What is something you think everyone should do at least once?

Get a dog and fall in love.

Where would you direct a newcomer of Louisville to get a feel for the city?

NuLu on a day when the Flea Off Market is happening or the skatepark at 2 a.m. on a Friday or Saturday night.

What keeps you here?

I love my life right now. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.