I am a visual artist through and through: photographer, videographer, graphic designer, dancer. I've done it all. In those experiences I have figured out, I absolutely love to create; but, my favorite part is visualization, collaboration, & storytelling.
Conceptualizing ideas for brands, products, and fellow artists brings me so much joy. Working alongisde fellow black creatives to execute a vision, is my purpose. And because of that, I've made it my business to collaborate and build with other black creatives for brand campaigns, artists, etc.
Since High School, I have always wanted to be a visual artist. However, being a lawyer sounded a little more lucrative and so I went to college instead. After a very short stint interning at a law firm, I KNEW THAT WASN'T FOR ME. Not knowing what to do, I went ahead and graduated from Pepperdine Univeristy, with a degree in English Writing and Rhetoric in 2012 and immediately went into the workforce.
For 6 years, I was miserable. I worked mundane jobs that paid well but did not serve me. And so in 2018, when I lost my last corporate job, I was relieved.
February 5, 2018, I'll never forget that day. The day I swore I would never work a corporate gig if it didn't align with my purpose. Crazy thing is...I had no idea what that was.
I spent 2 months sleep and dreaming. Dreaming and sleeping. Trying to get my body rested and also trying to visualize where I wanted to go. I was on unemployment at the time, so I had that luxury. I remembered my high school dreams and spent my a few hundred dollars on a Ti6 Canon camera. I was a great photographer then, so why not take it seriously for once. I spent time taking Udemy classes trying to learn how to edit, capture professionally; and how to build a social media presence.
My studies led me to eventually launch "For Us Media" and I became a for hire Social Media Manager. All of my clients were black business owners. I showed them how to build a presence and create content.
I also took on my first political campaign and helped the youngest councilman in our city get elected. By January of 2019, I was on a high. However, I was barely making enough money to get by. The campaign didn't lead to more paid gigs. My unemployment had run dry. I could barely pay rent. My car had been repossessed. And by the end of February 2019, I had become depressed and a drunk.
I was worse off then when I started and alcohol gave me an escape. I would literally scrap dimes and quarters together just to get a hit of tequila. Around the same time, I had launched my IGTV show "The Creed" to give myself a sense of purpose. I discuss my journey in life. I eventually coined the phrase "Die Empty" because my goal in life is to put everything within me back in the world. It was my saving grace.
It didn't keep me from drinking, but it did keep me from taking my own life. It was the one constant I did have. I had stopped taking clients. I needed to figure out my purpose and remember the promises I made to myself. And one day in prayer, I heard the word manifestation.
It was all I needed. I began to study it and then embody it. It wasn't smooth sailing but it gave me something to work for. And I discussed my discoveries in my show. Little by little, life found new meaning and I was able to refocus my energy into my creativity. That resurgence connected me to my mentor, who then became my boss in August 2019. I found my calling for helping my community. But I still needed an outlet for my creativity.
Through my work, I realized that my heart is solely for the empowerment of Black people. And I knew, I could use my creativity similarly. Since I was hired at a start up, I didn't have the time to really figure that part out until 2020. It was fine though, cause I spent the end of 2019 breaking my relationship with alcohol (I am 11 months sober as I write this).
It took another year for me to get back to my creativity. I was still doing "The Creed", however, I was looking for my lane in this creative world. It wasn't until June 2020 when I figured it out.
Through reflection I discovered what I loved the most: conceptualization & collaboration. I love spending countless hours developing an idea through research. I also thrive working with like minded creators. Putting my loves together led me to my field: Creative Director. In July 2020, I put a small team of 3 Black Women together and we executed my first project that launched August 2020: This is 30/African Candy.
Now, I am fully immersed with my creativity while working my day job. I am off the bottle. I am happy. I am at peace. I am in purpose. I am excited for the continuation of this journey. The expansion of my creativity. And the beautiful minds I will work with.
This is only the beginning.
September 1, 2020