Interview: Alex

Today we’re joined by Alex. Alex is a wonderful visual artist who works with both digital and traditional media. A lot of their work is experimental or abstract. They have a particular affinity for the strange and enjoy drawing monster people. Their work is interesting, with muted colors adding a sense of eeriness to it. It’s clear that they’re a dedicated and passionate artist, as you’ll soon read. My thanks to them for taking the time to participate in this interview.

WORK

Please, tell us about
your art.

Oh man, what is there to tell? I draw original works and a
lot of abstract and experimental ideas. Be they my own or friend’s characters,
ideas, scenes, bad puns, you name it. I am constantly challenging myself to
improve and draw all the strange ideas that come into my head.

I do have an intense interest in monster people though.

What inspires you?

It’s more along the lines of “What doesn’t inspire me?”
Being disabled I’ve spent a lot of time inside my own head; built species,
characters, worlds, ideas. A bit of music, a bit of nature, a phrase, a person
in a state of emotion, smells even can get my brain working and thinking; ‘Who
does this remind me of, what would this character do in this situation? How
would this species interpret this?’

I’ve ended up creating entire characters after waking up
after a rough night in the hospital from drug fueled dreams, desperately
pleading with the nurses for some paper and pen so I could get it out of my
head before I forgot all of it.

What got you
interested in your field?  Have you
always wanted to be an artist?

I always drew but didn’t always want to be an artist. I
remember my duotangs in elementary school being filled to just an inch short of
the brink with doodles, shapes, silly cartoons, puzzles, patterns and a lot of
dragons. I remember then never hitting the edge of the duotang because I used
the work paper inside to hide the fact that I used drawing to pay attention to
my lessons.

It was honestly my paternal grandmother that really got me
into art, she paints but never had a knack for drawing things from her
imagination. And when she found out I could and did, she actively encouraged
me, often getting me to draw fantasy creatures for her to use as references for
her own art.

I didn’t start doing digital art seriously until a few years
ago when the arthritis in my hands started to make using pen and pencils
difficult to use for long periods of time. Its been a fun learning process that
I’ve been lucky to have other artists that inspire and encourage me along the
way.

Do you have any kind
of special or unique signature, symbol, or feature you include in your work
that you’d be willing to reveal?

I sort of do but I tend to forget to put it as a watermark
on my art. I designed a crest for myself that is in desperate need of an
update. (My digital art skills have evolved a lot since then)

Other then that, maybe intense colours and lots of flowing
lines.

What advice would you
give young aspiring artists?

As dumb as it sounds, practice the basics. When you find
yourself frustrated with your art go back to doing basic gesture pieces and
pages of doodles. Once your ready to draw something big that practice will be
ingrained into you and will make things easier in the long run.

And don’t be afraid to fuck up! Making mistakes is how you
learn, its allowed, and sometimes you end up finding out how to use those
mistakes to make your art even cooler!

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum
do you identify?

I’m a panromantic asexual in a polyamorous relationship. I’m
also a transitioning agender person. Two months on hormones now, woot woot!

Have you encountered
any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field?  If so, how do you handle it?

Not overly, I’ve faced more backlash for being non-binary
transgender then I have for being asexual. Most of the time my sexuality
doesn’t come up when I’m drawing for someone, and the few times it has those
I’ve been working with have been openly curious or even relieved because WOW
there are a lot of Ace artists out there.

What’s the most
common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?

‘You can’t be asexual, all humans have sexual urges, you’re
not a plant’ –Said to me by my abusive mother at 15 when I was trying to
explain why I wasn’t really okay with identifying as just bisexual.

Another big misconception people seem to have is that I
won’t have a raunchy as hell sense of humour. Admittedly my humour tends to go
from raunchy to ‘wtf’ in seconds flat because I don’t view sex as anything but
funny, so see no issue mixing it with other things I find absurd and funny.

I like to write porn (my favourite people to write it with
are other Asexual people or Demisexual people) and think dildos are the
funniest things on the planet. Just because I don’t want to hear about my friend’s
sex lives or be physically involved myself in sex doesn’t mean I can’t see how
it can be important in other people’s relationships.

What advice would you
give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their
orientation?

Its okay to be unsure, its okay to question things. But know
this, no matter what anyone else says, you know you the best. You always will.

Finally, where can
people find out more about your work?

I’m mostly active on Tumblr: bohgeyboss.tumblr.com

Or at my Redbubble shop: www.redbubble.com/people/agentboss.

Thank you, Alex, for participating in this interview and this project. It’s very much appreciated.