CardCastles Artist Spotlight: November 2017

“It’s been a while since we got to do one of these and I’m happy that I decided to bring this series back as Snapping Turtle is now moving in.

Over the years working with Snapping Turtle and having my services available there, I’ve gotten to meet, talk to, interact with some wonderful people a lot of which have artistic and creative talents of their own. What branched was an art community of beautiful sorts.”

— J. “Daydreams”

concept artist

Some of my friends/clients/family/those in my network have businesses and ventures of their own.

Today during this CC Artist Spotlight I’d like to highlight a handful of these creatives for all what it’s worth.

And that’s everything.

After a long while,

I’m pleased to be promoting fellow artists and creatives here yet again.


Jessie Stevens and Madhawi Karaya

You can find out more about both of these lovely ladies by clicking on either one of their names. What we’re highlighting today here at CardCastles is their beautiful book that was a collaborative effort of both of their artistic talents.

Find out more about What If Butterflies Loved Snow by tapping on it’s website below.

whatifbutterflieslovedsnow.com

Hit the Gift Shop while you’re there!


Originally a fan of this next entry, Oschino Vasquez is someone in my network I spoke to a few times through Instagram and he is extremely down to earth, immensely multi-talented, like a lot I’ve known from the Philly area.

Many don’t know Oschino outside of his work with Jay-Z and the Roc-a-Fella crew, State Property, O is also a talented artist.

His artwork is the business below we are spotlighting today.

instagram.com/oschino_art


I’ve gotten to know Monique through my network for a little under a year, I think, correct me if I’m wrong, but she has been a ray of sunshine any time I’ve spoken to her. & She is quite a beautiful human being. Go follow her on social media if you aren’t already to see what I mean. She is quite the multi-talent as well!

Today I’m highlighting Monique’s gorgeous store.

Go shop around!

lizboutiqueonline.com


@Wislainef has been my Instagram buddy for a little bit now & I was thrilled to see a little while back that she opened up her own business line of apparel.

Visit her line below!

instagram.com/aimandexecute


~This has been another~

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Daydreams Diary: I’m Waiting Here

Truth is I’m long overdue for one of these things. So-much-so that I don’t know where to begin.

With that said, like a wise friend once told me,

“Start at the beginning.”

 

Still Ill

Since the tail-end of 2015, I’ve been wrapped under ill health. I’ve hinted at it here before, but never blatantly stated there is something very wrong going on in my body that could possibly cost me my life.

I guess I didn’t want to worry you.

I didn’t want to add to your stress.

I could barely accept it myself.

After all, I am a mother.

 

Months of Work With No Reward

Book covers and album art might seem like easy work to someone outside of my field. Until they try it themselves and see just how grueling it can be. Most quit within the first year.

It takes a trained eye to be able to determine what is going to pull a person in. Concept artists are in the business of bringing your visions to life. This sometimes involves an almost spiritual gift to “see” into someone’s head.

I’ve been at this now professionally past the year mark. The job itself has come with countless rewards. These past few months have been different, though. It seems nothing I’m working on is getting off the ground.

 

More Hate (As Usual)

Riding off to run errands one morning I hear a distinctly familiar voice on the radio. He was being interviewed by a popular shock jock around these parts (and nationally). The man went on trashing some female that he only referred to as “some chick on Instagram.”

Needless to say that “chick” was me and that interview cost me some clients. I’ll spare you the details. This person doesn’t even know me. They only know of me, due to the fact we move in similar circles.

It didn’t stop there.

After the atrocities going on in my country, I could no longer allow myself to stay silent on certain topics sadly deemed “political” issues.

This has gotten me labeled, attacked, and ultimately shunned. All because I am sticking up for people who’s voices get silenced daily. But, this is not new to me. I had the same role growing up in school. I’m used to standing up to bullies in defense of my friends. Though just like then, sooner or later, I expect to be attacked or silenced—just like them. This does not mean I’ll stop; no, much to the contrary. I simply acknowledge that this is a tough fight, that will probably still be going on long after I meet my end.

 

Hope

The hardest part about writing this isn’t publishing it.

It’s the knowing that most of this will go over people’s heads.

It’s the knowing that the same people who slashed me up for being “too positive” all the time will criticize this for being “too negative.”

It’s the feeling that this could possibly be the last thing I write.

It’s the knowing that no matter what I do, I can’t fix any of it. (And I’m a control freak.)

It’s the knowing that no matter what height I reach, someone will always be there to knock me back down.

Though despite all of this shit, I will not give up or give in. Heaven knows I’ve been through worse.

As long as I’m still here there’s a chance to spin this all around. After all, I’ve got things planned and that doesn’t stop just because I’m ill.

 

Family & Friends

My sister is having a baby. I’ll be an auntie this May. I wish I could say this is cause for celebration but, sadly my relationship with my sister is becoming strained. I want to be there with her when she delivers. I want to help solve all of her problems. But I can’t. I’m not always available when everyone needs me. Some people in my life understand that. Most don’t. I have a demanding job, an even more demanding side-job, and I’m the mother of a child that needs extra care. Some people misinterpret this as me not caring for them. Now, I can add my own flesh and blood to that list.

 

No Time to Wallow in the Mire

Even with all of that heavy muck, I have no time to stop. There’s a client waiting on my work as we speak. I have three days to make magic happen. There’s a Sleepy Sundays piece of artwork waiting to be published for you bright & early. My son needs me 24/7, and that doesn’t stop when I’m sick. It’s open season on every single person I love, so you know I’m not going to shut up about all that anytime soon. Not while people I care about along with myself are persecuted, ridiculed, labeled, silenced, and shoved away.

I could just shut down. It would be easy. It would feel good. I’d get some much-needed peace.

But what fun would that be? I’ve been sent here to create—to heal.

Someone I care deeply about that has been somewhat of a mentor to me this past year and well into 2017 recently said,

“I can’t live in a world without art.”

So why in the world would I let that happen? As long as I live and breathe here on this Earth, why would I ever stop?

I was born for this.

So c’mon baby light my fire…

Sleepy Sundays: Lifeline

Lifeline
Lifeline

If there’s one theme that’s been consistent diving into this new year it’s been that my friends continue to be my largest support system. One of my closest friends and I were sending texts back and forth while I set up the next few months worth of designs. I’ve got some very large projects launching, releasing, and being revealed collectively soon. He proceeded to push me every step of the way & kept encouraging me that my artwork is worthy of great heights.

In rough and trying times, along with the general busy chaos that is my generation’s adult lives I’m so damn grateful to have friends like that who grab me by the shoulders and say “You’re doing a great job! So frigin’ relax!”

You are my lifeline, friends. Keep inspiring people with your ability to love.


While I created this I listened to this:

What is your lifeline?

Have an electric Sunday!

Sleepy Sundays: Forest Nook

Forest Nook
Forest Nook

For years I’ve taken inspiration from the sights and sounds of nature. This piece is no different. Yet, there’s something alive about this one. The colors seem to dance on the page.

With spring around the corner, I imagine some of that imagery will only seep into my work some more.

I have a very special musical treat to go along with this Sunday morning’s coffee chatter. The Otherworlds Café has been a busy place lately. There seems to be radio transmissions being found there…

What was the last bit of imagery that inspired you? Do you create your own music? Are you excited for spring?

Sleepy Sundays: Otherworldly Gardens

Otherworldly GardensOtherwordly Gardens

There are many strange places within the depths of my mind. This little nook is one of them. When I’m trying to write or starting off a new project sometimes my mind travels into this area. It’s a surreal land full of beautiful, outlandish living things. I often wonder if I’m the only weirdo with a thought process like this or there are other fellow weirdies out there.

What is your creative process like? Do you have an odd place like this in your mind?

Have a surreal Sunday!