An interview with Aeforia, Concept Artist, NFT Creator & Art Director
In the world of 3D content creation, Aeforia, also known as Alexy Préfontaine, is a name that has been making a huge impact in recent years. With a unique style and exceptional talent for bringing his imagination to life through stunning 3D renderings, Alexy has quickly established himself as one of the most sought-after creators in the industry. In this interview, we will be diving deep into the world of Aeforia, exploring his creative process, inspirations, and the journey that has led him to become one of the most exciting creators in the world of 3D art. Whether you're an aspiring artist or simply a fan of Alexy's work, you won't want to miss this in-depth look into the life and thoughts of one of the most talented 3D creators of our time.
What keeps you inspired after having created so much digital art over the years?
You’ve been creating artworks for over seven years now spanning from collages to photography and now 3D, how many pieces do you think you’ve created in total, what has inspired you along the way, and would you say that there is a common theme that permeates your works?
It's hard to tell the exact amount but I'd say probably close to 6-700 hundred pieces!
I've always been inspired by a multitude of things, including colors, which are at the centre of my work, textures, portrait & fashion photography, music, and my own personal experiences. I’ve also been greatly inspired by my contemporaries along the way, big shoutout to all my artist friends (find a list further in the interview)!!
Since day one, the goal has constantly been to create something better in my own eyes and to explore different means of expression, hence why I experimented with various techniques in the first few years. Creating art is something personal first and foremost, and I am grateful to have been able to make a career out of it.
To me, my work is all about color, balance, and emotion. It often presents surreal characters in ethereal environments, who end up being the vessel of my self-introspection and experiments with lighting, palettes, body language, composition and texture.
Looking back on all those years, what would you tell a younger version of yourself?
The first advice I would give myself would be to trust your gut and be able to say no. There were moments where I had a bad feeling about a new project I was about to be involved in. It was either because I had a hunch that it would take longer than what I anticipated, or because I thought it was generally poorly organized from the start. I nearly always turned out to be right when I had that feeling before starting a project. Over time, I came to understand that it's okay to decline new tasks if you feel you can't handle them or if they would cause you too much stress due to poor organization or communication on the client's part.
The second one seems so obvious but is really important: “never put off until tomorrow what you can do today”. If there’s something you want to learn, take the time to do it, you might not have the time later. If there’s a crazy project opportunity waiting for you, don’t wait before it passes you by. Sometimes, I’d get caught up with projects that I thought were a big priority, and they didn’t turn out to be as fulfilling as I thought they’d be. Therefore, some of these ideas or collaborations I wanted to do at the time took too long to get started with and just ended up being forgotten about.
Lastly, the advice I often give when I’m asked is to be patient (but also strive to be better). I believe that patience, paired with commitment and hard effort, will always produce positive outcomes. I remember how rushed I felt sometimes when I started out: trying to find a style, clients, and opportunities. It took me a while to actually find any of those things. In hindsight, it was a warning that I simply wasn't there yet and that I still needed to refine and let my work mature before being given more significant opportunities. I feel like if I had the same opportunities (I am saying this word a lot but I can’t find a better one haha) sooner in my journey, I simply would have not been ready to handle them and I might have never pushed my style as far as I did!
What goes through your mind when you begin a new project?
I think it depends on the scale of the project. When I start a project with the intention of creating a big collection of works, I always spend a loooong time writing down and sketching out ideas. I'll reflect about what message or themes I wanna convey, what will be the visual language associated to the series, and how I will use that language to tell the new story. If it's a standalone piece, I will sometimes have more of a spontaneous approach and will go with the flow, experimenting with new techniques. However, some of these pieces will be thoroughly planned ahead with an extensive brainstorming before working on them.
In your 'Eras' series, you feature a dragonfly, what is the symbolism behind this?
This series was an important one for me, as it tells a story about change, where each piece represents a chapter of my life. Therefore, I wanted to find a simple yet meaningful and memorable symbol. The dragonfly, a symbol of change, transformation and self-realization turned out to be the perfect emblem for 'Eras'.
You can learn more about the project here
Do you have a favorite artwork or project you're especially proud of?
It always changes through time but I’d say that my current favorite piece would be my latest one called “Catharsis”. It was an occasion for me to push my craft a little bit further, over the course of nearly three weeks of full-time work. I’m happy with how it turned out, especially in terms of details, as it’s definitely one of my most detailed pieces to date!
Here is a Twitter thread about “Catharsis”
What is your split between agency and NFT work, and what is your take on the NFT art space as a whole?
It is ever-changing to be honest! Last year, I spent more time on creating crypto art compared to client work, as this year it has been more 50/50. I personally love that crypto art can enable artists to add a new way of monetizing their work with their own personal work. It’s pretty crazy to me that a lot of digital artists can now have the chance to make a living out of their own artistic vision rather than devoting the majority of their time bringing to life someone else’s.
There’s a lot of innovation happening right now in this new sphere of the Art world and it’s very exciting to be able to witness it. We’re collectively challenging our perception of digital ownership and I believe this is a necessary thing, as our lives become increasingly digital over the years. However, I think the space still has to mature, but I’m not too worried as it has only been around for a few years.
On the about page of your portfolio, you have a picture of yourself in front of a KORG synthesizer, do you have a specific attachment to their equipment, and do you still produce music?
Totally! I've personally been using my KORG M50 (digital workstation keyboard) since 2011, and I have had a KORG Minilogue since 2017-2018. They both have been a crucial part of my music-making for a long time, including my Prophet 08! I do, I've been in a band called Alpha & the Van for several years and I score pretty much all of my animations using that gear.
Do you currently have any favorite artists; who are they?
Lately, I’ve been kind of obsessed with the work of these artists: Arsen Asyrankulov, Vini Naso, Darío Alva and Kushlet.
Besides your computer, what is the most important piece of tech in your arsenal?
That's a tough choice haha, but I think I would usually say my Prophet 08, as it's the synthesizer I use the most in my soundtracks. However, I'm now a new owner of a Rokoko motion capture suit, and I'm pretty sure it will become very important in my practice really soon.
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