Ali Graham


Who are you, and what do you do?

I’m Ali Graham, I’m a freelance creative specializing in illustration, animation and film-making.

I’m probably best known for my hip-hop based online illustration projects 99 Problems – which has recently been published as a book, Beyonce Vs Zombies – and most recently Lil’ Ye.

I’ve also created work for Estee Lauder, IFC, Hyundai and The Who.

What forms of media have influenced you the most?

Music is a massive influence on my illustration projects – they are predominantly based on playing with and manipulating song lyrics and concepts into fun visuals.

I also love TV and movies – I recently created some work for IFC’s Comedy Bang! Bang! which was a dream job – getting to watch a really fun show and creating commissioned “fanart.”

I’ve always enjoyed responding to pop culture as its always moving forward and evolving. I love having an idea and creating it there and then – otherwise I might get too precious or lose interest too quickly.

What hardware / software do you use?

Hardware-wise I’ve got an iMac and Wacom Cintiq. I do most of my drawing in Adobe Flash and cleanup and textures in Photoshop.

What would be your dream creative setup?

I think my ideal creative setting was at university when I studied animation – I loved feeding off the energy and ideas of other creatives. When working freelance its really easy to become isolated and get trapped in your own creative bubble. You need someone close by to give that crucial “birds eye perspective” when you’ve been staring at the same image for hours – those tiny tweaks make all the difference.

I’m pretty self-motivated, so I’d like to think I could work pretty much anywhere. But having a studio space a 10 minute walk from my home works best for me: I get to “go to work” allowing me to separate work and life, and not having to commute is a massive plus when it comes to making the most of the productive hours in the day.

Co-Founder at Constructed By. Student at University of Wisconsin - Madison studying Business with a focus in Marketing and Accounting.