Interview with artist Alastair Knowles Lenoir

JB: Could you please introduce yourself?

AKL: Hey, my name is Alastair Knowles Lenoir, I’m 26 and I currently live back and forth my van in Cornwall and London.

JB: How did you get started with illustration?

AKL: I think I grew up drawing with my parents a lot but wasn’t really encouraged to pursue it at school, then in the last year of my degree (which was in guitar making) I started drawing for fun again with my flatmate Luke. So I think that when I really started getting into it. After a couple of years working in cafes and traveling to surf, and generally not knowing what to do, I was persuaded by friends to start and instagram and share my work. Since then I’ve just been working as much as I can on new work and commissions.


JB: Is there any favorite spot/country and why

AKL: I think it would have to be San Sebastian in the Basque Country. It’s the perfect combination of amazing nature, mountains, waves, architecture, food and culture. It’s definitely somewhere I will continue to visit regularly.

JB: What makes you happy?

AKL: A lot of things! Being around good friends, painting, surfing and exploring new places.

JB: What projects are you currently working on?

AKL: I have been working on a bunch on new paintings whilst doing a residency in Cornwall, alongside a fair amount of commissions and a super fun animation, which I can’t disclose too much about.

JB: What do you do for a living?

AKL: At the minute my illustration work has been the main income around lots of odd jobs here and there. Like making coffee, crepes and teaching kitesurfing.

JB: Where do you see yourself in five years?

AKL: I’d really love to be somewhere with some consistent good surf and making designs and paintings as my only source of income! But anywhere good mates are is good!

JB: Tell us something about your home, England?

AKL: It rains a lot, and beer is too expensive!

JB: How does a typical day in the life of Alastair Knowles-Lenoir looks like?

AKL: At the minute I’ve been all over the place but since being in the van it’s been mainly – wake up early (as soon as the sun is up it’s too bright in the van) – check to see if the surf is good, if yes get in, if no make coffee – then start trying to reply to emails (which I am still not good at) – then start working on any commissions until I need some food – then cook lunch – then work on my own paintings or designs – maybe check the surf again if its worth it – then make dinner whilst painting more – have a beer or some campari (something which I recently became addicted to) and then go to sleep!

JB: What springs to mind for the following keywords?

Social Media — Never been a fan but it’s part of the job now and has given me some amazing opportunities to work with some great people already, and helped me promote my work really well.

Music — I’m a sucker for garage punk

Role Model — There are too many to count I think! But definitely anyone who works hard and doesn’t care too much about what other people think of them.

Sustainability — Probably the most difficult challenge of our time. I always try and work as sustainably as possible but it is not easy. Being as aware as you can and doing the best you can is definitely the way to go!

Flow — I guess I would relate that most to surfing!

Inspiration — Social interaction, nature and strange things

Adventure — As much as I can get out in the van and surf or explore, I’m happy!


Discover more work from Alastair Knowles Lenoir aka HANDSFORFEET