Sit Down With Our October '21 Featured Artist

Alexandra Olivia 

Instagram / alexa_livia
Featured Artist / October '21 ScrawlrBox

Alexandra is a visual artist known for her colourful and intricate illustration. She mostly draws her inspiration from the world around her – the books she read, the places she visited, the people she met – and translates them into compelling visual storytelling that incorporates both fantastical and contemporary elements.

 Her unique style and creative approach landed her many collaborative projects with global brands including Copic, Mini Cooper and Vans, and she also received the title ‘Top Talent’ for Illustration category from Adobe Design Achievement Awards in 2019. Through her works, she aims not only to inspire others, but also to bring more joy and colour into people’s lives.

What do you look for in a good quality marker?

When it comes to choosing a good marker pen, I would generally consider the following factors; durability (of both the marker and the ink), the consistency and flow of the ink and how well the markers blend. Bonus points if the marker feels comfortable to grip, has a wide colour range and various nib options, but essentially I think it’s more important to find a marker pen that suits your needs

Favourite medium to work with?

I like to experiment with a lot of different mediums so it’s rather difficult to pick a favourite, but if I really had to choose then I would say marker pens and fineliners. My works are very detailed and the fine nibs of both marker pens and fineliners allow me to be precise. In addition, they’re incredibly versatile – they work well on many surfaces, plus they’re mess-free and you can easily store them or carry them with you anywhere.

How would you describe your art style?  

Intricate, colourful and surreal. I think these are the three words that best describe my art style, but I actually would love to know how other people would describe it.

Would you say that your style has changed/ developed over the years? If so how?

Absolutely! My style is a combination of the different styles I’ve ever had since the very beginning of my artistic journey. I started off drawing anime and cartoon characters when I was a child, and as I grew older I ended up trying out many different styles and art techniques – so far I’ve done realistic drawing, fashion design, doodle and zentangle, concept art... and they all morphed into my current style.

What is your process for starting a new project?

Before starting a new project, I like to do some research or hunt for inspiration which usually give mea concept/idea to work with. After collecting enough ideas, I write down the project brief and timeline as a reference, followed by a thumbnail sketch where I plan the layout, elements and colour scheme based on the brief. Once everything is settled, I can really start with the project

How long does it usually take for you to finish a project?  

It depends on the timeline I created for the project, which is based on the size and complexity of the work. Smaller or less complicated work usually takes about 1-2 weeks to complete while bigger or more intricate work can take up to a month or two. There was a time when I spent more than a year working on a piece due to a lack of planning and inspiration, whichis why having a clear plan and timeline is important for me.

What do you love most about being an artist?

How ‘magical’ we are! Haha. It’s incredibly exciting to be able to create something tangible (or not necessarily tangible but enjoyable by many) out of the most random ideas and feelings, and for people to appreciate it. I also love how being an artist opens doors to heaps of opportunities and the fact thatart means endless possibilities. There’s no right or wrong when it comes to creating art, andas artists we have the freedom to explore the depths of our imagination and express ourselves in ways that are meaningful to us.

Do you like to plan a project or are you a spontaneous creator?

A mix of both, I suppose. I would need a detailed plan or at least a general concept before starting a project, but I don’t like to limit myself during the actual process so I’m also a spontaneous creator in that sense.

How do you know when a project is complete?

That’s a good question! For me there’s always this indescribable feeling of satisfaction, like when you look at your work and everything just seems to be in place and you no longer feel like something is missing – but I feel like a project is never truly ‘complete’, like even though the work itself is finished, that project will continue to have an impact to those who come across it.

Where do you hope to take your art in the future? Do you have any plans that you can tell us about?

As I mentioned before, there is no limit when it comes to art so I’m open to all sorts of possibilities! But I would love for my art to have even more value and positive impact, so I’m currently exploring and learning a lot including art therapy. Moreover, I love fashion as much as I love art – I have made garments, jewellery and even shoes in the past – thereforeI’m also planning to incorporate my illustration into something wearable or functional.

What’s your favourite thing to do on a weekend?

I rarely get any weekend off due to work, but when I do I love to spend it reading a good book, window shopping or going on a trip and exploringdifferent places.

What is your favourite time of year and why?

Definitely end of the year! Even though it gets awfully hot in where I live (I prefer the cold), it’s still holiday season meaning that I get to spend more time with my family and friends. Plus, all the festivity makes me feel happy, excited and inspired – all of which fuels my creativity.

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