Alan studied three dimensional design at Hornsey College of Art in London. After a short period of teaching in a secondary school, he worked as a technical instructor at the Royal College of Art. During this five-year period, he developed an interest in the ancient art and history of lost wax casting and began applying these techniques to his work.

He went on to lecture on this topic and instruct students on the modern technological equivalent of the process at the London Guildhall University and Farnham College of Art and Design.

In parallel with his lecturing Alan was developing and making his own work, promoting it through trade fairs and prestigious retails shows like the Goldsmiths fair and the Chelsea Crafts fair.

In 1997 Alan opened "Alan Vallis at OXO" in the Oxo Tower complex on London's South Bank. This provided him with a workshop and a showcase, for his unique collection of jewellery, in a central London location. Here visitors can browse, purchase an item of jewellery or commission a piece of work based on the themes of Alan's work.

Alan is also a member of the Gloucestershire Guild of Craftsmen and exhibits at the guilds annual exhibitions held in Barrington and Painswick, Gloucestershire.