ALEJANDRO CASTANON - ORIGINAL ART
Tell us who you are and a bit about yourself.
My name is Alejandro Castanon. I’ve been a professional artist since 2014. I was born in Mexico and grew up overseas in Europe. In 2003 I enlisted in the U.S. Air Force and served eight years as a combat engineer. In 2011 I moved to Texas and opened an art gallery. I began the gallery originally as a way of showcasing other artists work. I didn’t pick up a paint brush until 2012.
We know you create awesome original art pieces, but what else do you like to do?
I also enjoy traveling and working with businesses. Last year my girlfriend and I visited Scotland and Italy. I also consult startup businesses and entrepreneurs on marketing, financials, and other business topics.
Where does your inspiration come from?
I think I’ve always had an inclination toward art, realizing it in my late 20s I fell in love with artists work like Leroy Nieman, Evelyne Boren, and Sarah Stieber. All have an amazing mastery of color which is what inspires my own work.
When did you first know you were an artist?
I think I knew when I sold my first painting. It was actually five pieces that sold all at once to one collector. I was speechless. I had no idea I could make a living doing something that brought me so much joy and others as well. I remember spending some of that money on clothes for my daughter. It was surreal experience providing for her through something I created. That’s when I knew.
If you could spend the day with one artist or craftsman (dead or alive) who would it be?
I’d love to see Leroy Nieman work. He passed away almost 20 years ago. But to see his process and listen to him talk would be a dream come true. I actually found a signed serigraph of his work a few years ago in a consignment shop. It hangs in my home.
What handmade possession do you most cherish?
Two. A small portrait my girlfriend painted (she is also an artist). It hangs in our library. I love it to death. It has so much emotion and such confidence. It makes me smile every time I see it. And a large abstract painting my daughter made when she was seven that hangs in her room. It was the first time she really ever painted and it got her into a local art show.
What’s your favorite city and why?
Inverness, Scotland. We visited there last year. I grew up in Europe and have been to many beautiful cities. Inverness however is a small magical town in the highlands. The people are wonderful. The scenery is breathtaking. It has a sense of magic to it that you can only feel if you go there.
What is your favorite color?
That’s a hard question to answer I love so many. But right now, I’m enjoying pistachio green.
What’s your favorite smell?
Freshly baked chocolate chip cookies or freshly brewed coffee. I don’t drink it but I love the smell. Reminds me of my mom, she loved her coffee.
If we peeked inside your studio, what would be the first thing we’d notice?
Large windows that are behind my easel and lots of projects in the works. I love working with several mediums and trying crazy things. I get bored easily so the more I have to try with the better I paint when it’s time to work.
Anything else you’d like to share about yourself?
I was a break dancer in my teens and early 20s. I’m still one at heart. It sounds weird to say that out loud but I love the music and culture.