Alex Alexiev BS 12 Transportation Design

profile / alumni / transportation-design
December 14, 2017
Writer: Jamie Wetherbe

Designing Cars Fit for Bond, James Bond: Meet Automotive Designer Alex Alexiev 

ArtCenter: What are you working on right now?

Alex Alexiev (BS 12 Transportation Design) Designer, McLaren: I was working on the interior for the McLaren’s brand new car — the 720S, which launched in Geneva. Currently, I’m working on BP-23 — three-seat central driving position similar to McLaren F1.

McLaren interior

Alex Alexiev (BS 12 Transportation Design)

Just liking cars or design isn’t enough. You have to embrace the process by working with engineers and manufacturers.

AC: How do you define success?

AA: Having a clear idea of what you want to achieve. For me, success is the process of learning as you work toward the end result.

AC: Do you have any superstitions?

AA: I definitely do. I do the whole “knock on wood” thing. I avoid black cats that cross my path, but I’m a cat person, so that’s not always easy.

AC: What’s the design cliché you’re most tempted to use?

AA: I try to avoid them, honestly, because ArtCenter instructors are so adept at pointing them out. From a rendering perspective, I strive for realistic and not too faked.

AC: What’s the one tool you can’t do without?

AA: Pen and paper.

AC: If you could have any car, what would it be?

AA: My ultimate hero car — the one I had on a poster on my wall — is the McLaren F1LM. There were only a handful produced and two are onsite, so I walk by one everyday at work. I’m also a Lamborghini fan so I’ll take any of those, too.

Alex Alexiev

AC: Where do you go (online or offline) when you’re taking a break?

AA: I check out design blogs, as well as furniture and architecture sites. Offline, anywhere in nature where I can unplug my mind.

AC: What book is on your bedside table?

AA: A Diecast car model booklet, not intellectual reading at all.

AC: Who are the most interesting automotive designers working today?

AA: Chris Bangle. He’s made the leap between automotive, product design and architecture. He’s a multifaceted designer and another ArtCenter alum.

AC: If you could have a superpower, what would it be?

AA: Teleporting — imagining yourself somewhere and being there. I’d travel through history and between all different locations.

AC: What’s your most prized possession?

AA: My car back in California, a 1988 Pontiac Fiero GT designed by ArtCenter alum Ron Hill. It’s the car that inspired my interest in design. 

1988 Pontiac Fiero GT

Alumni Q&A

Submit the Alumni Q&A questionnaire to share your story. We want to hear about your accomplishments, what you're working on and your advice for future ArtCenter students.

AC: Where is your happy place?

AA: Traveling. It can be anywhere as long as I’m on the go and moving.

AC: How would your closest friend describe you?

AA: I joke too much and don’t take too many things seriously.

AC: What’s your best piece of advice for an ArtCenter student interested becoming an automotive designer?

AA: Just liking cars or design isn’t enough. You have to embrace the process by working with engineers and manufacturers. Visit suppliers while you have the chance — you’ll learn a lot more visiting places where you can see manufacturing and design happening rather than just sketching.

Alex Alexiev on LinkedIn
Alex Alexiev on Instagram