Posted on Jan 08, 2015 by Robin Darlington
In our latest interview we managed to get a hold of Alexander Grahovsky and he was gracious enough to answer a few of our questions! Check out this awesome talent who specializes in NSFW, adult, erotic, pin up, and comics. Great artist, great interview:
Alexander Grahovsky is an established and hilariously poignant digital and traditional illustrator. Ranging from his adult themed oeuvre to his ongoing "Alexander & Grahovsky" comic strip, you need to check out this Madrid-based talent.
Much of your work tends to revolve around humor or adult themes, what initially drew you to these themes?
AG: It all comes from my childhood. My father used to read adult comic books and collect a lot of art books. I loved cartoons and superheroes so I grew up with all this stuff around me. He also was painting and drawing all day and I started to imitate him.
Describe the first piece of art you can remember creating?
AG: My parents will tell you that it was a bad copy of Spiderman but for me it's the one I made in my first year at the University for a collective showcase. An eight panel composition about my very first split up. I think it has all the things I like: sequential art, humor, explicit content and feelings. (Sorry, I only keep a scan of the sketch)
There is a definite unique sense of humor in your comics and cartoons, did you read comics and cartoons as a child? Tell me a little about growing up.
AG: Yes, as I said before. It was all there ever since I can remember. I started to collect comics and cartoons before I could even read, just for the drawings. At the same time I looked at all my father's stuff. Maybe I saw at the same age my first Liberatore or Lichtenstein and my first X-Men or Super López (Spanish cartoons). I grew up in Alicante, a little city off of the Mediterranean. It's a nice sunny place near the beach but there wasn't too much to do if you have these kind of interests. I was always "the kid who draws", so I ended up moving to Madrid seven years ago, big cities bring more chances.
"IT'S WHAT I REALLY LOVE TO DO AND IT'S THE ONLY THING I CAN IMAGINE MYSELF DOING FOR THE REST OF MY LIFE"
Where is your favorite or most efficient place to work?
AG: At home. I have created the perfect place for me with a huge table, a big sofa, a 27inch iMac and a lot of inspirational stuff like illustration and art books of all kinds, movies, comic books, etc… Here I can do whatever I want. It's quite chaotic but I feel comfortable and I have a lot of space.
When did you know that art and illustration was something that you wanted to be doing?
AG: I've been doing it for as long as I can remember but it has been in the last three years that I have decided to take it more seriously. It's what I really love to do and it's the only thing I can imagine myself doing for the rest of my life.
"I THINK THE BEST PART OF A STORY IS WHAT ISN'T SHOWN"
Where do you hope to take your art next?
AG: I want to take it to more people, to more places. I want to keep learning and growing. I've got a long list of projects to do, of things to try. I think the right question is "Where will it take me?"
How would you best describe yourself?
AG: "I'm a nice guy in person but a pervert in the sheets" - Earl Sweatshirt.
Just kidding… or not. It's not exactly the truth, but this kind of sentence describes how I look at the world and how I am.
Where do you find inspiration?
AG: I find it everywhere: a party with friends, a day at the beach, a picture in a magazine, that frame in that movie, song lyrics, etc… I love to change the context of images and stories to give them new meanings, using the colors, hiding the most explicit parts or focusing on a detail of a big picture. I think the best part of a story is what it isn't shown.
"I WAS ALWAYS THE KID WHO DRAWS"
Best advice you ever received?
AG: Once I wasn't happy about a piece that didn't come as I wanted. A teacher told me: "Keep working".
What is in store for you currently? Any key projects for the next months? Anything you want to share? Can our readers help you with anything?
AG: I'm finishing a couple of personal projects. One is a humorous comic book about me and a penguin and the other one is an illustrated book for adults which I started two years ago with a solo showcase in Escalera De Incendios [Barcelona, link]. Also, some writers have recently shown interest in my work so for the next few months I hope to get some good news from that end. I want to work with other people so if there's someone who has some interesting project I can fit in, just say hi and let's talk.
photos courtesy of artist: