Been meaning to spice up your geek space? Look no further than Texas-based Gypsy Geek Studios! Alee and Mark Jones are the creative minds behind the online business.
While browsing the artist gallery at Dallas Comic Con, we came across Gypsy Geek Studios and their work caught our eye! Gypsy Geek Studios offers 3D sculpted handbags, wall art, picture frames, book boxes, and more!
Interview questions by ChinLin Pan
How did Gypsy Geek Studios get its start?
Mark: Alee wanted to do a business that allowed her to use her creative talent and I thought, “Why not?” It was an exciting idea, and what a great excuse to be at a comic con all weekend! When we were coming up with an idea for our business, we wanted it to reflect who we were as a couple. Alee clearly had more of a gypsy spirit and influence, whilst I was a proper geek, and that name Gypsy Geek Studios came out as a fusion of our two characteristics. We wanted to create geeky products that had a wildness and free spirit about it. Originally, our focus was more geek chic. So, we had a lot of products with that in mind. Alee wanted to use book covers as a medium mixed with her background in sculpting. As we researched, we found there was a lack of 3D art in this field and so off we went! We made 3D book purses, secret books and just experimented as we went. Every time we did a show we would assess – What sold? What didn’t? Why?
I loved looking at the book boxes at Dallas Comic Con. How did you come up with the idea for these items?
Alee: My book boxes were directly inspired by my work, actually! Working for a haunted house, I was put on a project to create a haunted library. A haunted library needs creepy books, such as Necronomicons. I was so ridiculously excited by the idea of putting faces on books, and even more excited by potentially creating different kinds of faces and applying them to different surfaces. So I made a product line out of it!
Mark: She also made one of these boxes for my birthday last year, and it was beautiful! It was inspired by one of our favorite fandoms and I was so impressed with it, I encouraged her to make more so we could sell them! We’re glad you love them!
Where do you look for inspiration for your products? What is that creative process like?
Alee: I am inspired by so many things, but mainly faces. It doesn’t matter the face; human or creature, young, old, pleasant or vile. The range of expressions, textures and moods inspires me to translate it into clay. I take the same approach with the fabrics, paints and surfaces I choose in order to fully express the work. My creative process often involves many steps, but in order to create anything of quality, I must be inspired in this way or else the piece suffers.
Mark: I pretty much watch on the sidelines! Put it this way, you wouldn’t want any of the products I make! I help more with the idea process, help her to stay on track and encourage her to keep going, to stay focused. So I often give her target numbers to aim for so that we have enough product for any events we do! But looking at her creative process, for every show she experiments her quality of work improves every single time. When I think she can’t do any better, she constantly surprises me!
What are your favorite fandoms?
Alee: I’ve always been a huge DC fan. I also love the Walking Dead, GOT, Legend of Zelda, Sherlock, Studio Ghibli and so many more. But currently those are my favorites!
Mark: I think my all-time favorite fandom has to be The Legend of Zelda – I’m very excited for Breath of the Wild! Otherwise, I just generally love comics: Marvel, DC, Image… I’m such a fanboy, and it excites me that after years the most exciting movies and television shows are using comic properties! I generally love Nintendo stuff, as well as cult sci-fi shows like Firefly and Farscape. We’re generally big geeks – our wedding was superhero-themed, so that should tell you everything!
What are you working on next?
Alee: I want to make more monster books. More styles, more creatures, more detail. I feel like this is a chance for my work to become more interesting and layered, which thrills me to no end!
Mark: I’m all about selling her stuff, ha ha! So looking at which shows to attend, what new avenues to explore, how we can expand our social media presence. We’re beginning to focus more on original designs, and less on pop culture, as they seem to always get the most attention in every show!