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  • Writer's pictureHannah Ghafary

Artists' Corner: Getting to Know @alilpickle

California-based artist, Shai Hendrix, better known to her followers as @alilpickle. Photo via Instagram.

Hello friends, and happy Friday! I know I've been missing in action on Posh & Painterly the past few weeks. I've had my hands full with the academic quarter coming to a close at SCAD. However, I've got some awesome content for you this week to make up for my absence.

As you can probably tell from the title of this post, I'm starting a new series here on Posh & Painterly called Artists' Corner, where I'll be interviewing other artists and creatives. In this series, you'll get a behind-the-scenes look at the work process, upcoming projects, and other exclusive content of all of your favorite artists.

I could think of nobody more fitting to start this series with than boss-bitch artist, Shai Hendrix. Shai, better known to her many followers as "alilpickle", is a 24-year old self-taught artist from Huntington Beach, California. Shai creates beautifully colorful works that often incorporate geometric elements and figure work. So, let's get to know Shai!

So… what’s the story behind the name “alilpickle”?

I have always loved pickles sooo much and it just came to me a few years back when I was trying to think of a new [social media handle handle].

What are the ideas and intentions behind your work?

[My work aims] to promote self love, feeling beautiful in your skin, positivity, and motivation. [But, sometimes, it's] just about the weird things I enjoy drawing.

A digital illustration from Shai's motivational series.

What does your typical workday look like?

I usually wake up and shortly head over to my computer [to] print shipping labels and package orders! Then, I’ll move onto commissions, or other orders I have to fulfill. I take breaks [as needed], but I typically work throughout the day.

Shai's favorite tattoo. Photo via Shai Hendrix.

What is your favorite tattoo you have and why? How many tattoos do you have?

My favorite tattoo is probably this really cute ghost bat I have on my ankle. It is meaningless, but it was a Friday the 13th tat and I just find it so adorable. I have 17 tattoos!

How do you get through days when you’re not feeling artistically inspired?

If I’m not feeling inspired, I usually switch to doing something else besides creating, like updating my website. Sometimes, I just take the day off and relax!

A digital illustration from Shai's motivational series. Photo via Instagram.

How did you take the leap from art being your passion to pursuing it as a full-time career? Was there a defining moment when you just decided, “I’m going to do this”?

Yes, actually! It was in May about two years ago. I had just finished a documentary on manifesting the things you want in your life. [That was the] day I realized that I wanted to take art seriously, and I was going to do everything I could to make sure it happened! I set lots of goals for myself, keep a positive mindset and [practice] affirmations.

What’s your favorite work you’ve create to date?

I don't know if I have a favorite [work] of all time, but I definitely love my “Stimulation” pieces a lot. They’re very satisfying to look at.

Stimulation, acrylic on canvas. Shai Hendrix. Photo via Etsy.

What is the best and worst part of your profession?

The best part is definitely getting to do what I love and [getting to] be in control of myself and my schedule. The worst part is probably just overcoming obstacles without any help, or dealing with rude customers.

What shows are you binge watching right now?

I just finished binging “Love is Blind” on Netflix and can’t wait for a new season. I’m also binging 90 Day Fiancé, America’s Next Top Model and Hell’s Kitchen!

What is your go-to art tool? Is there something in your studio you can’t live without?

I think I will always have a true love [for] simply drawing, just picking up a pen and doodling. [I appreciate] having all the control in my hand, compared to [working with other mediums].

Rainbow hair picture middle left. Photo via Shai Hendrix.

What colors have you died your hair? Which has been your favorite?

Oh man. I’ve dyed my hair red, green, [several shades of] blue, purple, pink, rainbow, and a bunch of mixtures in between (lol). My favorite was probably rainbow and I’m sure I’ll have it again some day!

Where do you see yourself, as an artist, in 10 years?

In ten years, I hope to be running some cute art shows and [teaching] classes. I'd love to host paint and [sip] classes or teach kids to paint, just wholesome stuff like that. [It's also another dream of mine] to have my own storefront and studio. I cant wait for these things.

What projects are you currently working on?

I am currently working on a second coloring book, more new products [for my shop], some paintings, a second motivational series, and some bigger things I can’t speak on yet! I have a lot of plans and goals to come.

First page of the second edition of the Alilpickle Coloring Book. Photo via Instagram.

What’s an interesting thing about you that your followers don’t know?

A lot of my followers probably don’t know this, but there’s a scar next to my left eye from my little sister hitting me in the face with a golf club. It was extremely intense (lol).

If you were a crayon, what color would you be and why?

I would definitely be baby pink. That’s always been my favorite color and although I love other colors so much, they just can’t compare!

If you enjoyed this interview, feel free to shoot me a DM or leave me a comment below to let me know what artists you'd like to see featured in the future! And if you want to make sure you catch future Artists' Corner interviews and other content on Posh & Painterly, make sure you scroll down to the bottom of this page and subscribe!

Stay updated on @alilpickle via Instagram and Twitter, or check out her website.

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