As a kid, Aaron loved to draw. His early inspiration came from cartoons and videogames of the 90s such as Ren and Stimpy, Aaaaa! Real Monsters, Sonic the Hedgehog, Megaman, Super Mario Brothers, and, most of all, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. As he got older, Aaron’s teachers decided he should probably learn how to read. Since he was a dyslexic kid, this turned out to be more of a challenge than anyone would have liked. But then Aaron found comics. Calvin and Hobbes was the key to Aaron becoming an avid consumer of stories. Calvin and Hobbes made way for comic books like Elfquest and Spawn, and then European comics, first spotted in the pages of a buxom Heavy Metal Magazine, Aaron’s visual world started to expand. At the same time, the fantastical images of RPGs and Magic the Gathering carved out a big place in Aaron’s visual sensibilities.
Aaron’s own visual style started to take shape during his time at art school, combining elements of a more formal education in figure drawing and portraiture with comic book and cartoon sensibilities. Beyond visual influences, Aaron’s work is inspired by poetic moments of the world; the grotesque and the beautiful. He is fascinated with how people–himself, his friends, and the great masters of yore–relate to creativity and inspiration. In spite of the responsibility of adulthood, all Aaron wants to do is draw and daydream.
Aaron Zonka’s work has been seen on t-shirts, posters, card games, album covers, comic books, human bodies and many different walls. He lives and works in San Francisco.
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