Trusting the Process with Aaron Aalto

Drawing by Aaron Aalto. Full animation here.

This interview is part of a weekly series that focuses on creators who live at the intersection of writing and art. The goal is to provide inspiration and practical tips for anyone looking to add more visuals to their work.

Aaron Aalto is a prolific visual creator on Twitter. He effortlessly shifts between short animations, audience engagement, and even sketch tutorials. His posts come alive with a simple, consistent sketched style that is instantly recognizable. Sketching as thinking and trusting the creative process are the connective tissue that hold a lot of his social media content together. Since following Aaron, I’ve had this urge to play more with animation in Procreate.

I love these simple animations.

Below are some thoughts Aaron was kind enough to share with us about his visual process.

Please tell us about the creative projects you work on.

I’m working on launching a design freelance business. Additionally, I’m working on a sketching course that aims to teach anyone the basics of sketching ideas. 

How long have you been visually creative and how did you land on your current visual style?

Since I could hold a pencil. First memories of drawing are from Kindergarten. 

I tried doing all kinds of illustrations. So when I stopped trying I landed on what I’m doing today. 

It was born out of a desire to impute humanity to my work. 

What went into the decision to start including original drawings and short animations on Twitter?

It started as a fun thing for the 30 or so people that were following me. 

I’m riding on the shoulders of giants like Jack Butcher, Matthew Kobach, and Naval. They’re talents inspired me to share the work. 

What tools do you like to use for creating and publishing?

iPad and Pencil. Procreate (6B pencil). Rush. That’s it. 

Is there one image or animation you are particularly proud of?

Yes, the “Secrets of Life” animation with Steve Jobs. I’m proud of that. 

What advice would you give anyone who wants to build an audience using their visuals?

Find out who you are and what you want your life on Earth to be about. Follow your curiosity wherever it leads. Provide people with value. Hone your craft and march forward. 

Trust the Process. 

Are there any creators who work at the intersection of writing and art that inspire and motivate you?

Sure. Jack Butcher is a great friend and a huge source of inspiration. And then I’m blessed to have a circle of creative friends that continually inspire me. 

I’m a wealthy man when it comes to inspiration. 

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