Interview with Alexander Aghayere, Creator of GRIM GENESIS

Hello there, and welcome to! Could you start by telling us the name or names of everyone on your creative team?

My name is Alexander Aghayere.

Where are you all from?

I am from Aurora, IL— a small town about an hour away from Chicago.

Share a little bit about yourself: childhood, education, family life, etc.

I was raised in a very open and loving household with my older sister. My dad was originally born in NIgeria, where his household life as a child was practically “black” to my “white”. However, in contrast, my parents made it really important that me and my sister knew we were loved and more than that fully supported in whatever we loved. Unfortunately that didn’t stop me from being misunderstood early in my childhood especially in school. I had no sense of how others felt about me when I was young so as a result I never really understood myself. Art really saved me from that.

Tell us your latest news. What kind of projects do you have going on?

So, aside from my graphic novel, Grim Genesis, which is still in progress. Im also a fine artist working on building my portfolio for the gallery scene. I recently was invited to sell my work through and, two prominent art publications, so that’s pretty cool.

When and why did you begin writing/drawing?

I fell in love with cartoons, like real love, when I was in junior high. I found the ability to create a whole world, a whole actual story extremely interesting. I also had been a fan of comics for some time so when the two loves collided in high school I found a voice and a reason/ muse to tell my own stories, whether it be through fine art, illustration, or most presently, Grim Genesis

What inspired you to start expressing yourself artistically?

Art really is a mirror. When we look at any image we don’t just see the art and the narrative and or feelings it holds, we also see ourselves by reflecting on our perceptions of artworks. It’s with that idealism that I found art to be my craft of expression, I loved seeing my feelings, raw and unfiltered. Art honestly showed me who I am.

How has your style changed since you began?

It’s strange when I think back, I really don’t think that I had a style through all of highschool and a lot of college as well. Grim Genesis truly came from the “heavens” solidified a perspective within my artwork that eventually turned into a style that I feel is really recognizable as my own.

What do you find the most challenging and/or rewarding about writing/drawing?

I think the biggest challenge of creating anything is being able to balance creating something for yourself that is genuine and authentic for yourself only, instead of for others or commercial success. People can tell the difference, I feel. I know I can with my own artwork. Luckily I feel that writing and drawing is much more rewarding than it is negatively challenging. I love storytelling and I honestly think there is no better way to do that than through comic books and graphic novels.

How much of your work is based on reality, whether it was experiences or people you know/knew?

When I think about it I feel that it’s about 50/50 between my own experiences and things i’ve either been inspired by or made up. Naturally, I think farther into that question and come to the conclusion that I don’t think that there is much of a difference. We are all connected, the ability to express emotional empathy is proof of this. I truly believe that my story is not really “my story” alone, there is only one story with multiple perspectives and billions of actors.

What have you learned while working on your latest project?

Going big is worth it, every time. When I started Grim Genesis I had nothing but nostalgia fueling my reasoning, I wanted to do something to help escape the close mindedness of college, subsequently, I brought to light a story that I feel has taught me how to survive, how to actively live.

Do you have any advice for other writers/artists?

Make. Keep making, for only you so others can get learn from your perspective. Also, don’t worry about making good looking art, that goal is overrated and is objectively impossible to achieve without giving up who you are.

Do you have any links where we could find your work?

Go to my website Supreme.Grim, and you can see all of my illustrations, fine art and other things.