“For me, being an artist is having a visceral desire to create. To feel fulfilled, I have to be on this constant search for discovery and experimentation. It's also about trying to find my own unique voice to share with the rest of the world. Being an artist is also the best job I can think of. Most of the time, when I work on projects related to aeforia, I never feel like I'm working. I can do it all day long and I'll see time going by so quickly.”
Alexy, or as he’s known on Instagram, aeforia, is a 3D artist whose work takes you to another world. His characters are surreal, yet relatable, filled with emotion.
But surprisingly, Alexy wasn’t always on the track to becoming an artist. This is the story of how a good student with a promising engineering career ahead got lost in the world of art and somehow found himself along the way.
Early Days – A Good Natured Kid
From the outset looking in, one would think that Alexy had a fairly normal childhood. He grew up in calm Canadian suburbs and spent most of his days under the sun in a large backyard and playing hockey with his friends in the streets until his bed time.
He was also a pretty imaginative kid: “I used to imagine myself in those sci-fi scenarios where I'd be fighting monsters or aliens; a classic. I'd find myself drawing quite a lot, and I remember creating comics about a storyline that involved Kirby and some malicious creatures. I think I had 10 'volumes' and I was super proud of these because I created them myself from start to finish.”
However, after his parents divorced, Alexy found himself moving around frequently – a challenge for any kid growing up. As with most challenging parts of life though, there was a silver lining.
Alexy’s paternal parents and step-parents were all hard-working individuals. His father owned a damage insurance firm, his mother was an accountant, his step-father owned a business, and his step-mother is the vice president of a large corporation.
Being surrounded by such driven people would play a profound impact on his life. Friends would describe him growing up as a “model pupil” who would strive to get good grades, make others laugh, and bring a good vibe to the classroom.
View this post on Instagram
-To Another Dimension- @aldenhopkins #aldenhopkins_ffa (boy picture) #editjunky#edit #ejunkies #edit_perfection #rsa_graphics #rsa_graphics #reflectapp#mextures #madewithmeld #moldiv #pixiteapps #union_app #unionapp #pixirexpressapp #pf_arts#artistz_united #arttalkfeature #illmatic_features#ig_editz#jj_creative #sclérotique#graphic#graphicdesign #ig_underground#kf_overlays @kerry_fin #e_wizardz_wtm #rsa_graphics_reflecting #circularframesedits #ejunkies_20k
From Engineering to 3D Rendering
Alexy first started seriously looking into art when he stumbled upon an iPhone app called Fragment. The app allowed him to edit photos by adding shapes to them and started creating artwork for his band. Pretty soon, he had dozens of apps, eventually getting to a point where it was almost as if he had Photoshop on his phone.
Though he was pursuing an engineering degree, everything started changing when he started sharing his creations and started generating positive feedback.
“I was studying engineering and I realized I ultimately had no genuine interest in that field because on the other side, I was having the time of my life when I was creating artworks on my computer. It was at this moment that I decided to change of career path and start studying in graphic design instead. It was a tough decision.”
Leaving behind a stable and lucrative job, his father was originally a little skeptical and pushed back. Ultimately, he came around when he saw how motivated Alexy was about his newfound passion.
“I've known Fred for about 3 years now, and I think he's the one who had the most impact on my career so far. For those of you who are not familiar with him, he's a 3D artist who decided to create a unique artwork every day. He was able to do it for 1500 consecutive days. Fred has always been incredibly helpful over the years, helping me out with being confident in my work. Also, seeing him being so dedicated to his craft definitely pushed me to improve myself in so many ways.”
In the summer of 2017, Alexy had a breakthrough moment when Adobe shared his work for the first time.
“I was soooooo ecstatic haha! It was a great feeling to receive recognition from the company that created the software I use. This is just a small example, but it definitely was rewarding to see such a thing happen.”
The Days Ahead
Since then, Alexy has reached millions of people with his work and has worked for companies like Opera, Cirque du Soleil, Adobe, Fubiz, and Pantone.
Though it seems like he has already accomplished so much, Alexy will actually be graduating from university in April 2020. So in reality, he’s truly only just begun.
(Alexy's work station)
“I have a few goals in mind that I'd like to accomplish over the following year. Firstly, I'd love to refine my skills by learning new software like Substance Painter and Houdini (I'm afraid of the latter haha). I feel like experimenting with new tools will be great to diversify my work and explore new horizons! Another project I'd love to work on would be creating my first short film. This seems like the next step for me!”
Alexy plans to be a full time freelance artist upon graduation. As to whether or not he made the right decision in pursuing art?
“All in all, I'm infintely grateful to have discovered my passion for visual arts, because for the first time ever, I feel like I have a job that I love. It's also awesome to see this project growing over the years. I'm excited for what's ahead.”