Al Polston

Hi! My name is Al (she/her). I am an artist from the midwest with a love for nature and animals. If I'm not making art I spend my time riding my horses or hanging out with my chickens.


In a sentence, how would you describe your work?

My work is centered around many kinds of animals, evoking a range of emotions from lighthearted and goofy, to eerie and stoic. I take influences from cave paintings, North American native artworks, and folklore. 

Do you have any favorite themes you enjoy working with?

I enjoy working on themes of human loneliness and inner turmoil through the visual of sometimes serious, sometimes silly animals. Animals need for socializing and the way they behave can often be described straight forward and with science, but humans can often be more complicated.

What mediums do you like to work in?

My main medium is watercolor with colored pencil embellishments, though I often sketchbook with pen and marker. I've also been enjoying oil painting.

As an artist, are there any tools that you would perish if you left the house without them? 

My brush sign pen. I love to sketchbook and it is one of my favorite pens to doodle with.

If you were an environmental storytelling skeleton, how do you think you'd be found?
At the bottom of a cliff with a horse skeleton (the horse killed us). The horse skeleton can talk too. 

Do you have a dream project you'd like to work on someday?

I'd love to make a childrens book or animated feature. Or a Tyler Childers album cover. (I have many dreams)

What is the strangest/goofiest (PG) fact about yourself that you're comfortable sharing?

I'm allergic to my cats, dogs, and horses. I'm also allergic to dust but nobody is telling me I have to rehome the dust.

What drew you to the imagery of the pigs? 

Given the time of year I get mushroom hunting on the brain, which of course means I'm thinking about truffle hunting pigs. Other than their fine craft of hunting for truffles, their enormous bodies, tiny feet, and big ears check a lot of boxes for me.

Can you talk a little about your design process? Where do you draw your inspiration from, and how do you work shop your design from draft to final?

I'm always hunting for inspiration, unconcously really. I draw it from beautiful scenes in nature when I'm driving, hiking, or standing on my porch; from animals, or antique items when I'm browsing. When given a prompt this constant hunting always grants me some sort of initial concept or idea. From there I will make personal sketches or explore additional themes and imagery I like. World building is second nature when creating imagery. When I've gathered a few different ideas I'm happy with I will make them into thumbnails to show a client. This allows them to collaborate with me on the concept. The final draft rendering depends on the clients needs, but in this case I finished in a digital format.

Do you have a favorite feature of the sock design? 

I'm partial to the sleepy oreo pig. Oh to be a pig slumbering in the leaves...

Ankle or crew socks for preference? 

If it's got a pattern I gotta go crew sock. I don't cuff my jeans for nothing. 


For more of Al's art, visit her portfolio or check out her Instagram!