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a few grails

Updated: Apr 20, 2020

If Instagram is good at anything, it’s stalking your artist inspirations. It was there where I found a few artists who really are giving me inspiration and help me to refine my goals within the art world. Both of these artists I mention today are from the UK, use line art methods in their work, and are based out of NYC. They dabble in fashion design and collaborate with big name companies like Bloomingdales and PUMA. They both maximize communication by using words and phrases to connect to the viewer and consumer, which is a technique I hold near and dear to my heart as I use it in my own work.

38 year-old Shantell Martin is a London-born, NYC-based visual artist whose accomplishments align with my own artistic career goals. Oh, and she’s a Libra like me. Her style is black and white line art, with words of encouragement sprinkled within the illustrations. The first time I noticed her work was when she partnered with UNITED airlines in the “Her Art Here” contest encouraging female artists to submit designs for a chance to design the skin of an airplane. Then when she collaborated with the NYC Ballet, I truly realized she was one of my career inspirations. I embedded her Instagram post about her work at the David H Koch Theatre, where her art was shown on the walls and floor of the theatre...truly amazing. She is doing what I want to do with my life: draw everywhere for everyone to see. Draw on everything and have people pay you to do it. All she brings to these collaborations is herself and a marker. How Colleen does that sound?? So not only are we both Libras and line artists, we are minimalists with our approach. She has also worked with PUMA and Kendrick Lamar in collaboration projects, and is invited to numerous award shows every year. Talk about an inspiration!! I can’t believe I only found her a few months ago, I can’t wait to see what she tackles next.

Patrick Church, a multimedia artist who was born in the UK but continues his career in NYC, is another artist whose accomplishments are similar to my goals.

My friend Jordyn sent me his instagram one day because she said Church’s patterned textiles reminded her of my line art. His instagram is an amalgamation of nakedness, line art, tattoos, androgyny, textiles, and models. He and his work has been published in VOGUE, PAPER mag, HARPER'S BAZAAR, HYPEBEAST, MILK, and so many more. VOGUE is my grail, so I am encouraged by artists who I relate to that have work published in these big name magazines.

Church paints and sells originals and prints but that was not what drew me to his work. The way he adds his patterns to clothing and advertises it in an atypical,

androgynous way is the most inspiring to me. His models are androgynous and gender non-conforming. The models all wear his dresses and speedo bikini bottoms, no matter the stigma or standard. Anyone can wear any article of his clothing regardless of gender. That is my favorite part. That’s how you market to every person.

I truly ran into these artists randomly on instagram but it is not random that they are now the ones that inspire and encourage my goals. The beauty of constant access to the internet is you have constant access to art! I follow artists who have made feats in their careers with VOGUE or who cover the walls and floors of a renowned theatre...because we have to learn from the greats! I am planning on doing big things in my career and to be able to see firsthand how these artists are growing helps me on my art journey.

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