According to The Pulse Of Radio, SLIPKNOT percussionist Shawn "Clown" Crahan said that the band’s late bassist and his childhood friend, Paul Gray, has always influenced his artwork. Crahan told TeamRock, "Paul loved my art. He believed in me all the way back then. He saw something in me. When I have my stuff, I laugh and I'm, like, 'This is some sick shit, he'd love this.' He's always on my mind man, he's always there."
Gray passed away in May 2010 from an accidental overdose of drugs and Crahan told The Pulse Of Radio not long ago that he thinks about his late friend every day. "I say his name all the time just for no reason, and being someone that started the band with him, I feel like he's kind of jumped into me in some aspects, and I feel like all my days are filled with him," he said. "Every day there'll be something that's kind of SLIPKNOT-oriented and I feel like I have a responsibility to always think about what he might have liked in the situation."
Crahan, who does his own art along with all of SLIPKNOT's album artwork, also mentioned that his parents had a big impact on his artistic expression. He explained, "My mom must have recognized something really early because for whatever reason I grew up on fine art books like Rembrandt and Matisse that were written for kids. They were the photos very big, big sentences, very simple. And I have early childhood memories of staring at this stuff. Also Dr. Seuss. Those were the two things in my world."
SLIPKNOT is touring behind its new album, ".5: The Gray Chapter", which came out in October and topped the Billboard album chart six years after the release of its predecessor, "All Hope Is Gone".
SLIPKNOT recently released a live video for the song "Custer", shot at 2014's Knotfest in Devore, California.