10 Minutes With Our Illustrator Alex Gamsu Jenkins

Ellie Weston – 11th Jan 2019

You know those lovely little illustrations round our website? They were all the fine handiwork of Alex Gamsu Jenkins, a freelance illustrator (duh) whom we have asked lots of questions for your amusement. Say thank you, he's a very busy man.

Here's his face so you can picture him saying the words out of his mouth:

He's the one in the foreground btw

Let's get to know him a little better:

What's the weirdest thing that you've ever drawn?

A bottle of Unicorns Tears gin, therapy was required.

What's the best thing about being a freelancer?

The terrible sleeping pattern, coffee stained teeth and no guarantee of income... Nah, it's great, I think the best thing about being a freelancer is having the opportunity to do something you love. It's also exciting as you never know what is round the corner in terms of opportunities and jobs. (Firebox ones obvs)

What's the most annoying thing a client has ever done/asked you to do? (Not including this interview, you maverick)

Definitely this interview! I'd have to say its times of having to change really minute details over and over and over again. Something as small as the amount of eye lashes present on a small mammal in the corner of the room that isn't even visible.

Would you rather everyone was able to see all of your internet history or all of your Facebook/Whatsapp/iMessage/whatever-chat-thing-you-use-most messages?

Oh god... with either one I'd end up being thrown in the Hague maximum security prison. I think internet history would be more embarrassing, whilst revealed messages would leave you with no friends.. so I'd go with internet history and become a laughing stock.

Do you take any, er, 'substances' to ease the transference of all that mad shit in your brain onto paper?

Personally I find the whole.. erm.. 'sweets' thing whilst drawing doesn't really work. You just grip the pen really hard and stare into the distance.

Favourite genre of music?

Anything signed, funded and abused by Simon Cowell. Actually I'm pretty open to anything, as long as it doesn't have involvement from Simon Cowell.

What pisses you off about being an illustrator?

Not being paid sometimes, not getting any sunlight, getting a bad posture from leaning over a desk all day. This is just the tip of the iceberg.

Would you rather have cigarettes for fingers or accordions for arms?

My fingers are already fairly nicotine stained, so i'll change things up and go with accordions for arms for entertainment purposes.

What's your favourite thing you've ever drawn?

Anything Firebox related.

If you've got time, can you sketch us a quick horse? Doesn't have to be a good one.

For goodness sake, Alex, we said it DOESN'T have to be good. What an overachiever.

Would you rather have a giant moth for a flatmate, or have to live with worst flatmate you've ever had for five years? (This one's a bit shit)

I think a giant frantic moth accompanying you on a night out and bashing into things could be quite dangerous but then again they are very soft to touch and seem like good folk. Moth it is.

Did you have to practice drawing loads or are you naturally this good?

AH SHUCKS GUYS! I think practicing loads tends to help. If I look back at anything from over two years ago, I break out in a nervous cringey sweat at how bad it looks on the eye.

If you weren't an illustrator, what would you be doing?

I'd be a 29 year old layabout that has had to move back to his mum's house. Hang on... that is me! If I wasn't drawing, I'd like to say something glamorous like a professional rower or wrestler but I think I'd be doing something quite mundane with a lot of pent up frustration. Like folding napkins on a napkin production line.

Would you rather have a billion quid and never be able to draw again, or keep being able to draw without the billion?

That's actually a tough question. But I'm going to say the right, inspirational and humane thing and that's to take the billion and delete my phone's contact list.

Where's your favourite place to draw?

It has to be at a desk, I'm afraid. A train is too bumpy and in a coffee shop people could come and peer over your shoulder. Which is always a nuisance.

Quickfire Round!

Cheese or chocolate?

Cheese

Digital or traditional art?

Traditional

Quality Street, Heroes, Celebrations, or Roses?

Oooh, that's tough... Celebrations

Booze or soft drinks?

Soft drinks all day

Matte or glossy?

Matte

Love or money?

Love

Coke or Pepsi?

Pepsi

Tigers or monkeys?

Monkeys

McDonald's or Gregg's?

Gregg's isn't 24 hour, so McDonald's

Up north or down south?

South

Portrait or landscape?

Landscape

Answering questions or not having to answer questions?

No doubt not answering.

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Cheese over chocolate?! Hmm, not sure about that. But our website would be at least 7 times less good without his mad illustrations so, as far as we're concerned, cheese is now God.

Give Alex some love on his Instagram or check out his website. Or treat yourself to both, do you.