Digital artist’s stunning images take Wales and Welsh mythology around the world
Figures from Welsh history and legend have gained a new legion of fans across the world thanks to the breathtaking digital artwork of a young artist from Llanberis.
Aled Thompson is a Welsh illustrator based in Llanberis. He has been working professionally as a storyboard artist for a company that provides artwork services for movies, games, and advertising worldwide since 2021.
But in his personal time, Aled has been working on developing his own personal style of illustrating, experimenting and researching to find new and exciting ways of expressing his creative language and the results couldn’t be better.
Through Aled’s work, both personal and professional, he’s been fortunate enough to have had the opportunity to develop skills in working with photo manipulation, animation and 3d modelling, as well as the opportunity to work with artists from across the creative field.
Welsh is Aled’s first language and he has deep roots here. Much of his personal work is inspired by Wales, from the beautiful landscapes, our rich and ancient history and legends, and from so many inspiring Welsh figures.
In the future, he’s hoping to spend more time illustrating all the treasures that Wales has to offer, and looks forward to sharing that beauty with the rest of the world.
Aled said: “Art was always my favourite subject in school and I decided to pursue it in higher education where I embraced digital art and found the versatility of the medium really allowed me to explore various styles and develop my own artistic language.”
“It was when I left Wales for university and was looking for that connection to back home that I began exploring Welsh myths and history for my artwork and that’s when I began to appreciate how significant they are to our Welsh identity, having such unique stories we can claim as our own and informs us of where we came from, and I really wanted to share that with a wider audience through my art.”
Speaking about the aim of his work, he said: “I think the aim of my art is always to make something that resonates with people while also having a distinguishing style that really makes it feel like something unique to me.
“The eventual aim is to have my own established brand of art that gives me creative freedom to explore artistic projects I’m excited about. My future artistic dream is to publish my own book or series of illustrations based on Wales.”
After seeing his works go viral online, he said: “I think there are various factors that encourage virality and a large portion is getting lucky with timing and the algorithm, getting shares by larger accounts helps you reach a wider audience and then having a certain quality in your artwork that encourages them to share it.
“For me that’s usually cute/funny drawings and having a distinctive style that stands out.”
Welsh community spirit
“We’re lucky to be living in Wales as I’ve found that this is a community that’s always looking to lift up and celebrate our artists from across the creative landscape.
“There’s so much from our culture, history and landscape to draw inspiration from and so many accomplished Welsh artists to follow in the footsteps of, I think that younger artists are in a good place to start a career in the creative industry.”
Aled is also keen to break down the barriers between digital art and physical art, particularly with regard to a perceived hierarchy between different forms – especially in a new digital era where work online has a much wider, and perhaps more democratic, audience.
He said: “I come from a background of working in the creative industry so I’m used to creating art for the sake of a function whether it be visual development for media or for generating online engagement, which means having to work quickly and efficiently communicating an idea.
“I think established gallery work can exist just for the sake of existing, something that awes us with its beauty or challenges our perception of an idea. I think that sort of art is so inspiring and it’s something I’m always striving for in my own work.
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