Gaia Alessi illustrator

Gaia Alessi

Illustrator: class of 2021

Gaia is an illustrator based in London, UK. She studied Architecture at La Sapienza (Rome) and briefly at the Royal College, London before studying Fine Art  at Chelsea College of Art and Design, London. In 2014, after a decade and a half of working as an artist and in the publishing industry, Gaia decided to concentrate on illustration. She says she hasn’t looked back!

Gaia Alessi was mentored by James Mayhew

“Over the past nine months, thanks to the Picture Hooks Mentorship scheme, I have worked together with James Mayhew to research stories and outlooks that would strengthen, nurture and enrich my illustrative voice and encourage me to be more ambitious.

James is brilliant, always available and staunchly Socratic: he immediately grasped who I am as an illustrator and suggested a variety of experiments to help me establish if my creative offerings are viable (i.e. doing the job intended) and true (i.e. matching up with my voice and identity as an illustrator).

To develop a new story, a new portfolio but more importantly a personal honest aesthetic takes work, often hard, repetitious and solitary. Knowing that James was there to support and challenge me during these months of research has been a huge boon. I will always remember the Picture Hooks year as one of the pivotal moments in my (hopefully) long professional career.”