By Kathy Chouteau
You could say Point Richmond artist, Aimee Alexander, is a “pepper.” Tracing the top of a Dr. Pepper bottle during art school, she realized she loved incorporating circles into her art—and it took off from there.
Today, Alexander’s love of circles is evident in her work—spanning from notecards, prints, stickers and notebooks to people and pet commissions—which she sells through her business, Artisticle (artist + circle), that she launched in 2009.
Alexander’s eye-catching art often features renown people—or figures—in black and white surrounded by a vibrant explosion of colors, circles and dots. A dive into her recent work reveals Rosie the Riveter in her old, familiar pose, Abraham Lincoln, Frida Kahlo, Betty White and enchanting animals like an owl, hippo and pug dog. Aside from her work, her extensive Sharpie collection is something to be desired.
Alexander calls herself a “colorer” and thrives on creating her hand-drawn works often by using templates and tracing and then coloring her pieces. “I just like to color and to make things colorful—and then, turn them into prints and cards and things,” she said. “Share the color with everybody.”
A Cool, California native, Alexander was 12 years old when her grandma took her to a friend’s graduation down in San Francisco and it prompted a life-changing revelation. “I was like, wow, you can do art as an adult for a living,” she said. She decided right then and there that when she grew up, she was heading for the Bay Area to be an artist.
But first, she had to hone her craft. She attended Sacramento State for college, first studying graphic design, but eventually graduating with a general Art Degree. Post-graduation, she realized her dream of moving to the Bay Area when she landed a job working with a jewelry designer in Berkeley (now in Emeryville), Zina Kao. Alexander credits Kao with encouraging her to break out and be her own artist.
Alexander moved to Point Richmond at the start of the pandemic and, in addition to pursuing her own artistic endeavors, also creates work with her boyfriend, Julian Quayle, via Alexander & Quayle. Together, they collaborate on creating originals and notebooks where he draws and she does the coloring. Look for them on Instagram at @alexanderquayle and on Facebook.
Alexander’s been selling her work for just under two decades through art fests, her website and retail shops nationwide, like Urban Outfitters and Richmond’s own Mom & Pop Art Shop. When she’s not busy creating cool art, she also works at the local Slow Burn Glass.
Next up, Alexander will be showing her work at the Craneway Craft Faire Nov. 25 & 26, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Craneway Pavilion, 1414 Harbour Way S. in Richmond. She said she’ll be showing a mixture of Artisticle works and Alexander & Quayle originals, as she shares a booth with Slow Burn Glass.
So, what advice does Alexander have for budding artists trying to make it? “Just make art, just put it out there…Just keep making it, and making it, and putting it out there. And your people will find you.”