Young Guns 21: Alex Cook

By Alixandra Rutnik and Brett McKenzie on Nov 01, 2023

Get to know the phenomenal class of Young Guns 21

After 85 incredible finalists and intense deliberation, the Young Guns jury has narrowed it down to the 29 winners that make up the class of Young Guns 21. An astounding collection of animators, illustrators, film directors, typographers (a few Ascenders 2023 winners as well!), graphic designers, and photographers make up YG21.

Every year we interview the Young Guns winners to get to know them better as artists and people. And as always, we are welcoming another class of outstanding individuals into the highly coveted Young Guns community.

Now that you know the YG21 winners better, we hope you’ll join us in celebrating them in person at NYC’s Sony Hall on Wednesday, November 15, 2023, at 6:30 PM. See you in two weeks and get ready to party!

Alex Cook


Los Angeles, CA


Indianapolis, IN


When did you first learn about Young Guns? From a prof in school?

Some of my friends and people whose work I follow are past winners.

How did you end up in the creative field anyways?

Growing up I always loved visuals and imagery, but I never thought of pursuing something creative until I interned under a cinematographer. That experience really opened my eyes to possibilities.

"Growing up I always loved visuals and imagery, but I never thought of pursuing something creative until I interned under a cinematographer. That experience really opened my eyes to possibilities."

Congrats on the W! Why did you decide to enter this year?

For the first time I feel I have a collection of work that reflects my tastes.

You only get to submit six projects that embody you and your talent. The best of the very best. So, how did you decide which pieces were good enough to make the cut?

With video projects, sometimes you’re balancing the needs of the project, client, or whatever else, so I tried to pick the projects that were the closest to “me.”

What was your reaction when you discovered that you won?

I was checking my emails in the morning in bed even though I shouldn’t. I am incredibly honored to be included among people whose work I admire. Filmmaking is a tough pursuit, so it’s definitely a boost and validation of creative effort.

In what ways does your hometown inspire your creativity as an artist?

I think no matter where you live you draw inspiration from the environment and relationships around you. Those things influence you consciously and subconsciously.

Now that you’re a part of the Young Guns community, are there any past winners you look up to and admire?

Too many to list them all, but there are a number of directors and cinematographers whose work I admire - Farhad Ghaderi (YG19), Douglas Bernardt (YG19), DANIELS (YG14), and Jonas Lindstroem (YG16) among others.

Name a creative and professional dream project that you have yet to fulfill — maybe Young Guns will propel you in that direction!

I’m not rushing anything, but I hope to have the chance to make longer form projects sooner rather than later, a feature or mini-series.

This is YG21, but what do you imagine you’ll be up to when YG31 rolls around in 2033?

If I can keep making films, then I’ll be happy.

Will we see you at the YG21 party in NYC in November?

I’m waiting to get confirmation on the timeline for an upcoming project, but I hope to make it!



Come party with us and celebrate all the Young Guns 21 winners on Wednesday, November 15 at Sony Hall! See you at 6:30 PM in NYC!

Get tickets! It's party time!

The class of Young Guns 21



Fire + Fragility: Zuzanna Rogatty's YG21 Cube Design
Young Guns 21: Max Amato
Young Guns 21: Justin Au
Young Guns 21: Tess Ayano







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