Category Archives: Creative

23Apr/16
prince

Prince Nelson Rogers: 1958 – Forever

At 1:05p I get a text from my longtime homie Shan that reads “WTF is up with these people saying my original Baby Daddy is dead!?!” I simply replied, “Nas??” half caring about internet rumors, especially when I’ve only been awake for 15 minutes. Awaiting her response I inadvertently check a facebook notification, hit the back button which led to my newsfeed, and lost all air from my body… No, God, Please… Not Prince…

I went to check the singular news source I rely on for death notices and they only confirmed “someone” died. Then, at 1:17p my King messaged me: “Hey baby. Prince died.” He was the first person to actually say it to me. A minute later my best friend called and whispered “Are you ok?” …”No…” We cried. Hung up. My King called, I was still crying, he just listened, only half understanding. I didn’t have the words to explain it to him at the time. I washed, briefly went to the gym, and cancelled the rest of my day.

I was too mentally numb to party like it’s 1999 alongside the rest of the Prince stans at the impromptu Spike Lee block party or with Quest Love at Brooklyn Bowl, so I stayed in bed. When I first realized it was official, I didn’t think being on facebook was a good idea, but I’m glad I hit the window accidentally. It was tough, but the out pour of love for Prince’s artistry has been so fulfilling. I’ve gotten to see a few clips I’ve never seen before and watched the globe bask in why I’ve loved him as far back as my memory travels… Throughout the day I received the messages I needed to use to explain why the loss of this particular icon crippled me.

 

0

@ElusiveJ explained it best!

 

2

It helped to know I wasn’t alone, like I so often felt when I spoke of Prince.

It also helped to laugh in between the blanket-soaking tears.

prince

prince

But of all, my heart was most moved by my King creating this piece for me… the tears burst through like a flood… The black and white version is in his Pan African coloring book, The Little Black Book. The colored piece is available as a print and t-shirt due to popular requests when he posted them.

prince theonewillfocus

prince theonewillfocus

My first facebook post read: “This sh*t is so unreal to me. I decided to go work more on [Taji] Mag to take my mind off of it and forgot I dedicated a page to him (it’s Vol 7, the theme is Afrofuturism, his Bday is June 7th and Vol 7 releases June 7th, etc), but now it has to be in memory of… I’m not ready.
Yesterday my old ipod finally died while I was listening to Insatiable (my fav song) and I was so momentarily pissed. If I only knew…”

I was devastated. I felt betrayed. But now… Now I’m listening to HITNRUN Phase One & Two imagining how his concerts would’ve been performing these songs so different from his 80s hits, yet still SO him.

prince

How I will remember him. Afro. Smiling. Protecting his 3rd eye. <3

09Apr/16
Meridian Lights

Brooklyn Indie-Soul/Rock Band ‘Meridian Lights’ is Making Waves

Meridian LightsBrooklyn-based indie-soul/rock band Meridian Lights has been on the scene for about 3 years, constantly playing gigs around the U.S. Meridian Lights is the song writing team consisting of vocalist Bradley Valentin and guitarist Yohimbe Sampson. They have recently completed their “self titled” second release.

Bradley and Yohimbe both grew up with heavy musical and art influences in the home. Music was part of celebrating the greatest moments of life, maintaining optimism during its trials, and served as an outlet for self expression. Yohimbe, self-taught, started playing guitar as a teen and honed his skills studying the instrument while playing with various bands, one being popular Brooklyn based Rap/Rock band Game Rebellion. Bradley, writing since the age of 12, has penned everything from short stories to poetry. He started singing as a teen in his mother’s church choir.

After crossing paths several times while living in the BedStuy section of Brooklyn, it all came to head at a party where Yohimbe grabbed a guitar and nobody would sing. Brad stood up, they started rocking, and haven’t stopped.

 

Check out the sounds of Meridian Lights via the links below!

05Apr/16
La Vérité

Christian Brandon: Cameroon Fashion Designer of La Vérité

Christian Brandon Sentinel is a young Cameroon based fashion designer and the founder and artistic director of maisonlavérité. ”La Vérité” is a brand that was founded in 2012 deeply rooted in Christian’s religious beliefs. “For me fashion is the diversity of everyday experience through others,” Christian noted. “La Vérité is a second life, a friend solace, a refuge on textiles. We do not create to create, but to mark the spirits and put his fingerprints on the textile.” The brand, since its inception, is operated by a team of friends who share their love for their ancestors and descendants via art, football, fashion, photography, dance, and music.

In 2016, La Vérité debuted STREET WEAR 1980s, a new line of ready to wear Womens and Mens apparel. To rock the latest in La Vérité and keep up with their movement, follow them at @laveritecameroun!

 La Vérité  La Vérité

03Apr/16
rising stars

Black Beauty: Today’s Rising Stars

Rising Stars

These photos were based on up and coming/rising stars in the African American community, focusing on the youth of today and getting a glimpse of what they are capable of, in the future, if not today… they are already amazing!
Model: Jayhawk St. James
Wardrobe Styling, Hair, and Makeup: Jayhawk
Photography & Retouching: Gabriel Garcia
Rising Stars
Every so often, there comes one who embodies the likes of past legends and yet, is light years ahead of anything current. Those are the Muses, one whom life chooses. We as onlookers can only sit back and allow them to flourish, all the while taking it all in and be entertained, inspired and love through it all and only wish to become like they are, now.
Model: Sasha Plastyc
Make-up and photography: Gabriel Garcia for,  Bio IMAGERY
14Mar/16
Roaring ‘20s Party

Roaring ‘20s Party During NY Fashion Week Benefits Polished Pebbles

Roaring ‘20s Party During New York Fashion Week Benefits Polished Pebbles

Roaring ‘20s PartyNew York, NY: This NYFW event/benefit showcased local artists, musicians and performers while raising awareness and funds for Polished Pebbles — a not-for-profit organization that mentors girls between the ages of 7 and 17.

Winston Wise, Exquisite Events NY & Beautique hosted and sponsored the 1920s themed extravaganza and benefit on Friday, February 12, 2016 from 6:00 to 10:00 pm. The celebration took place at Beautique, 8 West 58th Street near 5th Avenue. The event was open to the public with no admission fee. Guest attire was Gatsbyesque and flapper inspired, or “dress to impress.”

About Polished Pebbles: The mission of the Polished Pebbles Girls Mentoring Program is to provide girls with the opportunity of learning the vital life skill of effective communication. Our Polished Pebbles Girls Mentoring program instills confidence in girls to face the challenges of daily life by substituting aggressive forms of communicating and problem solving with new strategies that allow them to gain a solid reputation and respect without retaliating.

“Girls have adopted a “street code”, as a means for survival, to protect their reputation and retaliate when they believe their reputation is threatened. Sadly, we’ve all witnessed how many young women are only equipped to use fighting and aggression as the primary means to protect their personal respect and security, as well as to gain status.” – Kelly Fair (Founder of Polished Pebbles).

Roaring ‘20s PartyAcute Inflections is a chic duo of an innovative vocalist, Elasea Douglas, and a captivating upright bassist, Sadiki Pierre. Although their instrumentation is minimal, they deliver an intoxicating jazzy, funky and sultry sound.

Atomic Entertainment is a member of ISES (International Special Events Society) and APAP (Association of Performing Arts Presenters).

To learn more contact Jodi Isha Bisasor at [email protected]

Live jazz music by Acute Inflections with performances by Atomic Entertainment and art exhibitions by Ben Moon, Sarah Yi,James Stanhope, and Eddy Bogaert.

Jewelry by Soul BY Tapti Tapan

Photography coverage by Neil Tandy

13Mar/16
WinC Con 2016

WinC Con 2016 is Changing the Comic Game!

WinC Con 2016

WinC Con | © NayMarie Photography | www.NayMarie.com

WinC Con 2016 (Women in Comics Convention) was a great success again this year! With nearly 1000 attendees, dozens of vendors, and lots of panels and workshops, the Bronx Library Center was constantly buzzing! From gorgeous color poster  illustrations to fun on-the-spot doodles, the vendors filled the main floor with an art lovers eye candy, while panels and workshops discussed the real and raw of the comic business. On top of all of this dopeness, admission was free to the public, welcoming all to come and feast.

We enjoyed the Women in Comic Cosplay Showcase that discussed the powerful role of women in cosplay, specifically women of color. They came dressed as characters from Star Trek to Super Girl, modeled, posed, and explained what goes into making their costumes and why they choose the characters they choose. It’s important to notate that race should never matter. They made it clear that they didn’t have to be Black Super Girl or Black Black Canary, just the character as they are since they are embodying the character’s spirit. There is also no need to over sexualize their cosplay and harassment of any sort is not tolerated. They have fun but stand strong.

 

WinC Con | © NayMarie Photography | www.NayMarie.com

WinC Con | © NayMarie Photography | www.NayMarie.com

The organization that put on the showcase, The NY Cosplayer Network, Inc., also does a lot of charity work with shelters and military bases. They show up fully dressed to cheer up children and brighten their day. They collect books and hand them out and chat up the kids about their favorite characters. They even do events and birthday parties so people knowledgeable about the characters can interact with the kids instead of regularly overpriced agency finds who aren’t as invested.

Cosplay, or Costume Play, refers specifically to dressing up as a character but there is also costuming which is creating your own costume/character to bring to life. We’d love to see more of this happen with Black cosplayers. It’s good to break the mold, but it’s even better to create your own!

Check below for more images from the event and be sure to Like their page on Facebook at Women in Comics NYC Collective International!
WinC Con 2016 WinC Con 2016
WinC Con 2016  WinC Con 2016
WinC Con 2016 WinC Con 2016
WinC Con 2016 WinC Con 2016

   WinC Con 2016 WinC Con 2016 WinC Con 2016 WinC Con 2016 WinC Con 2016 WinC Con 2016 WinC Con 2016 WinC Con 2016

10Mar/16
Love

Black Beauty: “Black Beauty & Love”

Love
Love  Love  Love
Love  Love
Love
Black Beauty & Love as portrayed by Emma Youte & Tabbytha Janeen with sultry intimacy. Melanin is powerful, appreciate your gifts.
Models: Emma Youte (@emma_eazyliving) & Tabbytha Janeen (@tabbytha.janeen)
Creative Direction & Styling : Tabbytha Janeen
Photographer: Shane Clayton (@mrsohouptown)
26Jan/16

Africa as a Whole

“Africa as a Whole” 

Creative afrocentric expression exploring the various beautiful and original designs of Africa. Representing Africa as a whole and not one specific country, the photographer, model, and stylist came together as a team to further this stylistic investigation. Speaking on black beauty as well as a thank you to our culture.

Photographer | AR4Photography by Aleia Robinson-Ada
Model | Jasmyn Fyffe
Make Up | Jasmyn Fyffe
Stylist | Shanice Williams
@_ar4photography

Africa as a Whole   Africa as a Whole  Africa as a Whole Africa as a Whole

Africa as a Whole

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