We had the good fortune of connecting with Alex Ledford and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Alex, what matters most to you?
Subversion. I want to challenge the way people think about things. I’m always looking for something to push up against, something to undermine. When you do that, it makes people uncomfortable, and I want to make people uncomfortable. It’s human nature to constantly try to define and categorize and make sense of the world. But I’m attracted to things that prove we don’t actually know anything. If everyone else is taking themselves very seriously, I try to find a way to remind us we are, in fact, ridiculous. I get bored of beautiful things and beautiful people and so I try to celebrate the ugly and the wrong. By telling stories about alienation, estrangement and insecurity, it makes me feel less alone. I can relate to people who can’t relate to people.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
For money, I write TV commercials. But for not money, I take photographs, I write jokes and stories and lot of different things. To get where I am now, it was easy and it was not easy. It was easy because it was fun. It has never felt like work and I want to spend all my time being creative and making things. But it was also not easy because I used to suck. And it was really difficult to suck. Sucking makes you want to give up, and it makes you feel like a failure. I sucked for a long time. For years and years. But I just kept doing it. Who knows why. Probably because I’m not good at anything else. I just want to inspire other people who aren’t good at anything else to keep going.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I like taking people to the Venice boardwalk. Mostly because I selfishly want to go there. There is always something to see. There is always someone dressed like a mermaid or a violent group of rollerbladers or a 65-year old man singing “No Scrubs” by TLC. Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I would like to thank the poetry section at the Barnes & Noble on Broad Street in Richmond, VA. When I was going to grad school, I used to go there and grab a few books and park myself at one of the tables and read and write in my notebook for hours and hours. That is where I fell in love with the process of coming up with ideas. The music was terrible though.