We had the good fortune of connecting with Alexx Bishop and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Alexx, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?
I have been creating art ever since I could hold a pen in my hand. It’s something that’s always been so necessary in leveling out my mental state, and something that’s been so calming when life feels too crazy. Creating artwork has been something I’ve always wanted to do as a career ever since I was a child, but for most of my life I wasn’t sure would ever happen.

In my 20’s I worked serving or 9-5 jobs until I found myself almost 30, and newly let go from my corporate job due to COVID. At this point I was doing art as a fun side hustle, which ultimately turned into the opportunity to do it full time.

Being able to create beautiful art with my hands is such an amazing gift. Having others see value in my work and be supportive enough to help me keep living my dream is an even bigger gift. The love I have felt by connecting with others over my art has been fulfilling and heart warming; it’s exactly the opposite feelings I have felt from previous jobs.

As Tony Robbins said, “Energy flows where attention goes.”
I am just here to bring the art collectors and ocean lovers of the world some beauty to their space. I focus to see the good within myself and work that outwardly to others around me, creating a flow of positive energy.

Once I felt and understood the connection from my artwork to other people, I knew this was how I wanted to spend my life. The freedom to combine colors, designs, details… making genuine connections with people across the world that my art speaks to… the love and positive energy I feel for myself while creating… these are all the reasons I am pursuing my journey as an artist.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
Most of my artwork is done on up cycled surfboards, which started before COVID when I found a couple of abandoned surfboards behind dumpsters. Eventually, people were calling me when they saw surfboards left on the side of the road, in alleys, wherever. I took them home, cleaned them off, and let my imagination take over. I am obsessed with the idea that the boards were used so much that they were too worn out and banged up to fulfill their first purpose anymore, but they can be into something else. I can still feel the loving energy from the surfers still attached to their boards, so it’s easy for me to take that and create beautiful customized artwork from there. I had done paintings and drawings before on a much smaller scale, so being able to find a niche with a surfboard as a canvas was really exciting to me.

I like to fit animals, plants, and nature into my artwork as much as possible. Any time there’s a request for aspects of nature in a commission, I really look forward to doing those the most. Sometimes art collectors feel special connections with an animal or a plant, and it brings me such joy to put my own spin on that artwork. Ocean animals are especially fun to me!

I have always loved mandalas, and I have been practicing doodling them on paper for years. I try to include a mandala on any new artwork I can, because a mandala is an intricate symbol for the universe and how everything is connected. It starts small, in the center, as it does with just an individual person. As the design grows larger and outward, more and more is connected to the small individual in the center. I am in love with this idea that one person’s survival is contingent upon the strength of others outside of ourselves. Since it represents so much to me, I try to add them wherever possible in my art to remind others of this as well.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I live in Point Loma, so I frequent Ocean Beach almost daily. There’s a lot to go and do right in OB, so I would say start at Newbreak Cafe for Vietnamese iced coffees and breakfast croissants. You can always catch a lot of action and people watching on the lawn in front of the beach, so I would say parking it there for breakfast is a good move. I would most likely have my Pitbull pup, Only, so from there we would head onto Dog Beach and take a nice stroll all the way down and back so she could tire herself out. I really love animals (there are a lot of animals in my art!), so I would say the SD Zoo or Safari Park is a must for a day! On the way home I would have to stop by Crack Shack for a Firebird Sandwich and call it a day.

Another day would start in the same way-OB Dog Beach for the walk. Kate Sessions Park is a great place for a picnic with a view. Liberty Station in Point Loma has some great restaurants including Stone Brewery, Slaters 50/50, and the Liberty Public Market.

A great place to grab coffee and an acai bowl in the morning is Tiki Port-to be followed by the Dog Beach walk of course. An afternoon of paddle boarding on Mission Bay with boards from Surf Safari would be a great way to get exercise on vacation, followed by dinner at Barefoot Bar in Mission Bay with a view of the water.

Another place I love for coffee and breakfast is Local Krave, it’s about a mile walk from my house. To be followed by the beach, and lunch from the best fish taco/best cali burrito/best octopus burrito place ever…Mike’s Taco Club! Little Italy is pretty magical at night, so maybe we would go stroll around and grab some ice cream from Salt & Straw.

Reach Yoga is where I do yoga in PB, I would take a friend there for sure to slow down the pace. Followed by brunch at Naked Cafe in Point Loma, then Mission Bay has lots of spots to set up a campfire and watch the sunset and have s’mores.

Sunset Cliffs is also a must! Day time is great for walking up and down, and obviously great to watch the sunset too.

Basically…. You really can’t go wrong in San Diego! North Park, South Park, Coronado, Del Mar, Solana Beach, Carlsbad… all have their own charm and their own special reasons to go visit. I have even popped down to Tijuana for the day with visiting friends before and had an amazing time.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My boyfriend, Sean, is the backbone of my day to day operations. He has encouraged me from day 1 to pursue my passion of becoming an artist. Sean is always open for me to bounce ideas off him and protects my space when I’m creating. It would be really difficult to be a one woman show, so he also does a lot physically to make sure everything gets done. In the past, he’s been in charge of prepping my boards, sealing them off when the artwork is done, setting up full on photo shoots to showcase finished products, and help set up pop ups. Much of his time has been dedicated to helping me and making sure I get everything done, even if it means dropping his own projects. Sean has been a super solid support system over the last year I have been doing this full time, I truly couldn’t do it confidently without his support.

I wanted to also give a shoutout to my extremely supportive friends who always show up to events for me, repost me like crazy on social media, hype me up when I tell them about my new art ideas, and are always telling me how proud they are of me. Bailey, Tracy, Jamie, Zoe, Mitch, Laura, Erinn, Lindsay: THANK YOU!

Thank you to my mom who always came in clutch with the art supplies growing up, and for always keeping photos of my projects on deck to share anyone who seems even slightly interested. Thank you to my dad for teaching me that my dreams are never too big, how to push my limits, and that I can make it as my own boss; I am honored to follow your example.

Big shout out to my Graime, Grandma & Papa for always making me feel like I’m the most brilliant artist in the world, and shout out to my aunts, uncles, and cousins for always believing in my capabilities.

My previous boss, Eric, also deserves credit for taking the time (even when we worked together at another job!) to mentor me with the business side of my artwork. Thank you for the time you’ve given me, the knowledge you’ve shared, and believing in my art early on.

Thank you to all of the art collectors out there who have loved my work enough to want it for themselves and display it in their homes. I wouldn’t love my life as much as I do if you didn’t see something in my artwork, you have given me the greatest gift I could ever receive. I am afforded the reality of being a working artist because of you. THANK YOU!

Instagram: www.instagram.com/xandiegoart

Image Credits
Sean Gresham

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