We’re back with another Monograph — our behind-the-scenes video series where we interview illustrators in their studios.
When we met Alex Wilson in May 2016 in his North of England home, he was working as a freelance illustrator with a focus on children’s books.
He shared with us the inspirational spark that drove him to pursue illustration as a career. The winding road that led him to create work he enjoyed. He spoke frankly about his experience being a small part of a “big books” agency. And stressed the importance of meeting face-to-face.
A lot changed for Alex in the six years that followed the interview, so we asked if he could update us on some of his journey since the interview:
Shortly after this interview was filmed, my career in art took an abrupt turn. I had been struggling to strike a balance between working in Illustration for a living and financial stability for a while. In early 2016 I came to the realisation that the path to a regular income substantial enough to provide for a family of four was probably out of reach in the near future for an illustrator of my calibre at that time. I would need to find something a little more consistent if I was going to be able to draw for a living and be the sole breadwinner for my family.
I had been doing freelance for Marvel Animation since late 2015, and started taking as much work in animation as possible. By the summer of 2016 an in-house position opened up and they offered me a spot on the team full time and I jumped at the opportunity, moving to Los Angeles over a weekend to start work on the following Monday. Since then my career has been entirely focused on animation, working on various productions as a Character Designer, Prop Designer, BG Designer and occasional Story Artist for a range of studios. I have been lucky enough to contribute to some of the most widely recognised characters and IP’s in popular culture.
Moving forward, my ambition is to keep improving my craft and resume writing and illustrating the stories that I’ve always wanted to tell, but never found the opportunity to do so.
Thank you to George and his team for filming this interview and sticking with it after all this time, and thank you for watching.
I hope that there is some value to be found in my rambling, even if that is the knowledge that if someone like me can find a way to make a living from drawing, then you definitely can.— Alex Wilson