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GET TO KNOW:insta artist @aliomalley_

by Tori Sharp

Brainchild of Boo Bruce-Smith, @aliomalley_ illustrations are hilariously sharp and provokingly droll.

Turning everyday conversations with friends into witty illustrations started as a fun side project to do whilst passing the time at uni, but now Boo, AKA @aliomalley_ is now a freelance illustrator living in Paris. We chatted to Boo to find out the inspiration behind her snappy comics and spoke about the relevance of normalising talking about tricky topics.

“I see these topics regularly through everyday conversations or situations. With most of them, they crop up as stories over coffee or on the phone, which we consider to be normal from a dating experience gone wrong, or a comment made by partner, to being cat-called on the way to the shops. Most of the time we don’t even think these tales are abnormal, but when you break it down, you can identify that the connotations are far deeper, such as mental health issues, sexism, racism, or toxic masculinity. Then it’s about how I can make these snippets of conversation into an image that is relatable and conveys a message.”

Boo recalls reading The Dandy when she was younger, and always stealing the back pages of the newspaper to see Matt’s latest creation, “even if [she] didn’t’ fully understand it at the time.” Her observational approach to art started a few years ago, as she “wanted a way toexpress so many of the heated conversations being had, through a more light-hearted approach.” Her content ranges from mental health to fragile masculinity and addresses some other testy topics, but her approach is mostly jovial.

Reading the comments below her Instagram posts, it’s clear that her work is doing its job – getting people talking and discussing these matters. “People are less threatened by an illustration of a topless man and woman with her asking him to “put a shirt on”, over a conversation about the double standards of women being expected to cover their boobs or not show nipplage because its offensive or sexual.” Conversations are being had thanks to these zingy creations.

The new website will be up and running next month where you can purchase @aliomalley_ postcards and prints, but for now hit up her Instagram here for your daily dose of no bullshit creativity.

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