April 5, 2019
Living the Life
Alon Avissar is a local Washington, D.C. artist who uses his artistic talent and Photoshop as his ticket to meeting his favorite celebrity heroes. Avissar creates portraits and then presents them to the celebrity subject. Prior to pursuing his talent for creating unique portraits, he spent the past 10 years as a freelance art director with numerous advertising agencies throughout Washington, D.C., New York City, and Los Angeles. Currently, Avissar’s work can be found on his website at http://www.alondesigns.com with portraits of notable people such as:
- The Nature Boy Ric Flair
- Eric B and Rakim
- Nile Rodgers
- Jordan Peterson
- Roy Jones Jr
- Johnny Marr of The Smiths
- Alex Ovechkin
- Lykke Li
- Doyle of The Misfits
- Erykah Badu
- Big Daddy Kane
DC Spotlight’s own Laura Taylor talked to Avissar about his artistic career and how his portraits have become his calling card for success.
Laura Taylor: Where did you get your inspiration to create your portraits?
Alon Avissar: It was something I did as a one-time thing when I presented to the Nature Boy Ric Flair and then when I saw the good reaction he had, it dawned on me that maybe I could do this for other people in the area. Once I saw how people were responding, I developed it. At first, it started as a clever way to meet some of [my]heroes and go to free events and free shows.
Taylor: How do your portraits compare to the work of other artists?
Avissar: The actual style of the work is using double exposures and watercolors isn’t all that new. What makes this a little bit different is not only my creativity, but you’re actually getting to present it to the subject, which I think adds something different. It’s not just a picture of someone; it’s a picture of someone next to the subject.
Taylor: What is your process in creating these portraits?
Avissar: First of all, finding a photo that is higher resolution to work with. I’ll find a photo of the subject. I do all my photoshop and wizardry on it. I then go through the process of printing it and putting it in a frame.
Taylor: How do you decide which celebrities to create a portrait for?
Avissar: It really started with people I’m personally passionate about and grew up being a fan of.
Taylor: Who was the most pleasurable to present the portrait to?
Avissar: In terms of the artwork, I think the Alex Ovechkin came out the best. They were very very happy to receive the work. I enjoyed the whole presentation and taking the photo for their Instagram [account].
Taylor: Who is your dream person to do a portrait of?
Avissar: I would love to get the band KISS. All four of them together would be awesome, so either Sade or KISS.
Taylor: Who’s the next celebrity you’ll get a portrait of?
Avissar: Actually, I am currently in New York right now, and KISS is performing next week. I am hopefully going to get them, but it’s still a work in progress.
Taylor: How long have you been doing this work?
Avissar: The art thing, I’ve been doing my whole life. Professionally, I’ve been working as an art director for over 10 years. The portrait thing specifically started last February 2018.
Taylor: What else does your business offer?
Avissar: I work as an art director for a couple of different advertising agencies, mostly throughout the D.C. area. So I come in and I assist them with any campaigns they are working on. I make other sorts of products, and in addition, I also started the portrait thing. I always think it’s nice to be well-rounded.
Taylor: Which aspect of your work is most impactful on your career?
Avissar: Alongside my other work, I think it’s important to create other work that you’re passionate about. Even when I go and I meet with big agencies, the first thing they talk to me about isn’t my professional work, it’s about my portraits.