ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: Alec Mackenzie aka BADBLUEPRINTS
What GIF best describes how you are currently feeling?
When did you first start making GIFs? What was your first GIF?
I started a couple of years ago and the first was this animation I put together of a smashed up LCD screen taken from one of those cheap 99-games-in-one handheld consoles where all the games are terrible Tetris clones. I’d made a few prints based on it way back in art school and thought it would be nice to resurrect it in gif form. Things have gone a very different direction since then.
Your GIFs are so fun to look through because they are all so crazy and weird (in an awesome way!). Where do you find inspiration?
I try to entertain myself with what I make now and most of my ideas come from sitting at the computer, listening to music, or when I’m about to go to sleep and I’ll drowsily tap them into my phone for later. That means when I wake up in the morning I’ve got to remember what I’m supposed to be doing with nonsense phrases like ‘boxface’ or ‘hotdog planet’. I also used to work in a dental lab, casting models for dentures and mouth guards, so that’s possibly why I keep putting so many teeth into things….
I’m really most inspired by what other gif artists are making. Not necessarily always in terms of subject matter but the work ethic they have in constantly producing great art, all while carving out their own very distinctive styles and niches.
What kind of a process do you go through to create your art?
I’ve a big collection of models from Sketchup, and I’ll play around with them until something interesting comes up. I’ll then copy and paste the results into GIMP for editing into gifs. It’s fairly low-tech as I previously made them on a little netbook that would groan if you dared have more than two browser tabs open. My computer is a bit better these days but old habits die hard.
What attracts you to the GIF format?
I find it suits an intuitive way of working, like sketching, and there’s something really gratifying about their looping repetitive nature, in the same way that things like old zoetropes and clockwork toys are still fascinating today. Before I started making gifs I was becoming dissatisfied with my art in the studio as I was producing these large-scale geometric wall drawings that required a lot of planning and measuring and not much fun. I saw gifs as a good way to free things back up and start creating work purely for enjoyment again.
Who are a few of your favorite artists?
There are tons but here’s a handful…
Current favorite GIF?
When things aren’t going right this is oddly reassuring…
Want more? Check out more GIF art from BADBLUEPRINTS on Giphy.com…and if you have a Mac iOS 10.8 or higher be sure to download the screensaver!