We spoke to illustrator, BBC Radio Newcastle presenter, and comedian Alfie Joey about his current ventures in illustration.
How did you get into illustrating, acting, comedy, presenting and which do you like to do more of?
If you have an interest in something follow your heart and try it. Less is more. It’s your life, your story – you’re in charge of the script. I did a 15 minute Ted Talk about my many career changes called Changing Lanes (you can find it on youtube here). My latest venture, illustrating, is making me as happy as all of the other things did when I pushed myself to give them a go.
Who or what inspires you?
I am particularly inspired by the old Broadway illustrator Al Hirschfeld who was still drawing caricatures when he was 100!!
What kind of art do you enjoy the most?
I think I love Children’s Art the most. I really want to draw more illustrations for kid’s books!!
What advice would you give to anyone who is interested in beginning art, illustrations etc?
Just draw! The writer Stephen King said, ‘You become a writer simply by reading and writing’. I would say you become an artist by looking at other artists and drawing…but drawing until you develop your own style.
Alfie has also invented a bespoke range called #anagramart where he takes a client’s name and rearranges it into a fictional ancestor/character.
Where did the #anagramart idea come from?
I have no shortage of mad ideas and I have no idea where they come from. In fact, I have too many ideas and sometimes they get in the way of projects that need completing!!
If Unique Magazines was a #anagramart what fictional magazine would we be?
Well you would be a bespoke quiz magazine for the Automobile Association: ‘Unseeming AA Quiz’ (Check it- it IS an anagram of YOU!)
Do you have any favourite magazines?
I grew up loving comics. My daughter still gets Beano annuals…from me!
You can find Beano on our site by clicking on the above image.
Our subscription service The Comic Club’s vision is to provide a real alternative to gaming, tablets and social media through the magazines and activity sheets that we provide. With most things going digital these days, what do you think are the importance of books, magazines and art?
I’ve NEVER played a computer game; luckily it was never my thing. I was always happy with pen and paper. I think drawing or writing seems a better use of time than gaming because there is something obvious to show for it at the end of the day.
What children’s books did you used to read/enjoy?
I loved the Asterix Adventures, The Beano & The Broons.
You Illustrated the children’s book ‘The ghost that could not scare’ by Steve Wraith. What was the inspiration behind the book?
A pal of mine, Steve Wraith asked me to draw the pictures to go with his story. I think kids love spooky stuff (I did) so I jumped at the chance!
What does the future hold for Alfie Joey Art?
I’m tweaking our new website AlfArt.co.uk . Hopefully, that will lead to more commissions but I’d love to draw more children’s books.