Artist Statement

My creative passion is fueled by the people of the African diaspora. I love the culture, creativity, and fortitude of its people. I am inspired by our ceaseless adaptability and how the essence of our being always creates something out of anything. I am inspired by love and pride created from the transformations of diasporic experiences.
My process starts when I choose a subject. I immediately immerse myself into that persons work and sometimes inspirations. I read their books, watch their interviews, listen to their music. From all of this I choose a palette based on whatever energy I feel while I am engaging in research. I lay around for hours sometimes and listen to and stare at my reference photos. And once I feel comfortable, I just start painting.
My evolution in paint is vividly evident in my work. I started primarily working negative space and limiting myself to black and white. Each piece is an attempt at something new for me whether it is using my hands, brushes, palette knives, wood, glass, or plastic. I will basically paint on anything on which I can get my hands. I have used pencil, ink, pastel, charcoal, scraffito, mixed media and watercolor in the past, however, I have gravitated toward acrylic paints for the past few years. Acrylic paint fits my workspace and is adaptable enough to meet the needs of most of my projects.
I do not like to be compared to any other artist, which can be misinterpreted as rude, however, all art is referenced from some other form of expression (life, love, nature, other art, etc.). As I am still grasping with being referred to as an artist, I do not necessarily feel worthy of being compared to anyone. Quite simply, I paint. It can be daunting to be tasked with a societal pressure to express on behalf of groups of people. I see quotes all the time that imply an artist is tasked with documenting the times, the people, the struggle or expressing the needs and wants of those who cannot. I believe creative souls are burdened with expressing whatever they feel is lacking from their experience. This makes each expression unique as all our realties differ. Each piece may not benefit society, but it fills the space of something, somewhere that was missing for someone.