This week’s artist’s spotlight is on @austinwells_art
- Tell me a little about yourself.
” My name is Austin Wells and I’m a freelance artist and hairstylist. I currently work at Chris Le Salon and Society Salon in Scottsdale and Phoenix, Arizona. I’ve been drawing since I can remember and I’ve been a hairstylist for 7 years. I’ve self-published a comic book in 2014 called “Phantom Street”, sold art at conventions for a little under 10 years, run several photoshoots and fashion shows, and dabbled in 3D animation and graphic design.
I got into cosmetology from my mom and older sister who owned a salon together. I was tired of being a starving artist and ended up falling in love with cutting hair. I also just got back from spending a year living in Sendai, Japan with my wife. “
2. How do you incorporate horror into your hairstyles?
“Even though I was raised in a strict religious household, I’ve always been drawn to horror movies and spooky old cartoons. Halloween quickly became my favorite holiday growing up. I incorporate horror into my hairstyles by capturing the attitude of Rockabilly and Halloween flair. It’s easy to only think of Goth or Elvira’s awesome Beehive when it comes to horror hairstyles. Horror has made a real comeback in popular media. Just like the genre, horror fashion reflects a large variety of styles. Stranger Things (I would totally rock Steve Harrington’s style), Bubble Goth, and Witchy Bohemian styles of clothing are great examples. Even taboo looks like Satanic fashion has been growing lately. I love all of it and my mission is to make everyday Halloween through fashion. “
3. Do you remember the first art piece you created?
“My first piece of art I remember making was a flipbook when I was probably 5-6 about “The Three Musketeers” finding a magic wand to fight an evil duke. It was crudely made in every way. I cut up construction paper and stapled it all together and drew on the pages with crayons. I still remember it because it’s the first time I felt inspired to make something. I think it was after I saw that ’93 Disney Musketeers movie on VHS. I wasn’t able to fully write then so each page just had one big picture to tell the story. Which oddly enough attracted me to wordless storytelling that creators like Genndy Tartakovsky did with episodes of “Samurai Jack” or Stan Sakai with issues of “Usagi Yojimbo”. “
4. If you have to make a top 5 movie list of movies that inspire your art. What would they be and why?
“Who Framed Roger Rabbit? (1988)” Easily takes the top spot, every time I watch it I see something new and it makes me want to draw. the amount of artistry required to make that movie is still mind-blowing for me.
“Evil Dead 2 (1987)” This movie is what really got me into horror. A perfect blend of horror and comedy. Keeping the danger real in a story while making you laugh is a tough tight rope to walk and Evil Dead 2 crushes it.”Fright Night (1985)” Another great horror-comedy! This one succeeds in making memorable and genuinely fun characters to set a horror movie around. Every actor plays their parts perfectly and there’s some excellent thrills to be had.”Star Wars: Return of the Jedi (1983)” This movie gets a lot of flack for not being as good as Empire but I’d say it’s an excellent bookend to the trilogy. The growth you see the characters like Luke go through by the end is still satisfying to watch.
“Conan The Barbarian (1982)” This movie is underrated. Another good example of great storytelling with limited dialogue. For an action movie, it’s very artistic in its presentation. The score, the cinematography, and even Arnold’s acting lend itself to the feeling of high fantasy sword and sorcery.”
5. Do you have any exciting news or events that you would like to share?
“Currently, I’m working on making a vintage horror fashion show. It’s still in the design phase but I already have several stylists who are joining me on the project. I’ll post more information on my Instagram and Facebook pages @austinwells_hair and @austinwells_art. I’m also working on getting shirts made with some vintage horror designs up and running, with recent global events I’ve had to slow down on that project. If you’d like a dope haircut, come see me in Phoenix, Arizona at Society Salon and Chris Le Salon. I’m currently taking commissions and new clients, DM for more info! “
Thank you so much for the interview!
Until next time!