Interview with Paul Alexander Thornton
q)Please introduce yourself.
a)Paul Alexander Thornton, 25, from
q)Where do you live and work?
a)I live in Peckham, south
q)How would you describe your work to someone who has never seen it?
a)All hand drawn at the moment, very eclectic the drawings come in different series and each series will tend to have a theme or an idea tying it together.
q)How did you start in the arts? How/when did you realize you were an artist?
a)I’ve always been drawing and I’ve always accepted that I would grow up to be an artist, my teacher’s at school were telling me this even at a young age.
q)What are your favorite art materials and why?
a)I love biro and pencils, I used to use felt-tips a lot which was a little fascination of mine, but I also like permanent marker pens, acrylic paint and fineliners.
q)What/who influences you most?
a)David Hockney was a huge influence on the way I approached my portraits as well as Picasso, Schiele, Klimt. I think one of the greatest artists from my youth is Richard D James who you may know of as Aphex Twin, his music inspires me a lot to draw, as well as some 60’s psychedelia and some styles of tattoo art.
q)Describe a typical day of art making for you.
a)Get up. Draw. Drink tea. Play music. Draw all day until I’m too tired and then go to sleep.
q)Do you have goals, specific things you want to achieve with your art or in your career as an artist?
a)Yes I do, I want to be able to apply my ideas to all mediums that interest me, not just drawing, and to be widely acknowledged as having had something to say and something to contribute to society in terms of interesting art works and creative expression.
q)What contemporary artists or developments in art interest you?
a)I’m very interested in sound art, and experimental electronic music and have an ambition to get involved when I eventually reach some conclusion with my drawings that can allow me to take a fairly decent break to concentrate on other things, but it may be a while before I get to that stage.
q)How long does it typically take you to finish a piece?
a)The large drawing of skulls and roses took me a month, others will typically take me a lot less, like maybe a week for a big work or a few days for something smaller.
q)Do you enjoy selling your pieces, or are you emotionally attached to them?
a)I used to lose sleep over selling pieces, nowadays I’m not bothered in fact I’m happy that people want my work however I’m in no particular rush to sell, they are there if people want them and they are willing to pay, if not then they hang on my wall and I can look at them so it’s a happy scenario.
q)Is music important to you? If so, what are some things you're listening to now?
a)Music is massively important to me, right now I’m getting really into Fever Ray (the solo album by the woman from the knife) , as well as chumster volume 1 and a top secret electronica compilation a friend made for me.
a)I’m currently reading up on Aubrey Beardsley and also the Arts & Crafts movement.
q)What theories or beliefs do you have regarding creativity or the creative process?
a)I believe that creativity stems from a part of the brain that is in all probability closely linked to insanity, or something that seems like insanity. I think all people are creative and it comes out in many different ways, some people are told from a young age that they are not an artist but creativity is inherent in all people and must come out from somewhere. If you are nurtured in the right way anyone potentially could be like Picasso, but then we all need to have different jobs for society to function, I’m just glad that I enjoy mine.
q)What do you do (or what do you enjoy doing) when you're not creating?
a)Listening to music, socialising with friends, drinking talking, watching films. I’ve become habitual with going to the cinema lately.
q)Do you have any projects or shows coming up that you are particularly excited about?
a)I’ve been asked to exhibit in
q)Do you follow contemporary art scenes? If so, how? What websites, magazines, galleries do you prefer?
a)I like to chat to my friends about art and culture and that allows me to hear about things that I’m likely to be into in a natural way, that’s the main way that I keep in touch but I’m not really following any scenes in particular, more like individuals.
q)Any advice for aspiring artists?
a)Work hard, get organized or get a manager. Stick to what you believe in
q)Where can we see more of your work online?