We had the good fortune of connecting with Raheem Nelson and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Raheem, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?
I think it was always a combination of nature and nurture. My parents drew foe me until I picked it up myself. I was always drawing after that from age 6 all the way to now. Creating art brings me joy and it was something I knew I could excel at in terms of a career if I worked smart.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
My art was originally inspired by comic books. From 2nd grade through high school I created my own original graphic novels and learned how to market myself as an artist. A major turning point for me was post college and getting work as an illustrator, mural artist and fashion illustrator. I’ve chosen to create the majority of my artwork on an iPad Pro so that makes it easy for me to get my artwork to clients and businesses. Still, I occasionally get work in traditional media like the murals I created for Royal Sushi Restaurant in New Orleans. What sets me apart is that I’ve always been an artist that balances the business side of things. I embrace it, enjoy marketing myself and always look for new opportunities.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Oh, great question! So, I live in New Haven, CT and what I enjoy most about the city is the art, culture and the pizza. For a day trip we would start on Broadway and check out the shops, then we’d stop at the Yale Art Gallery to see the latest exhibition before grabbing dinner at Sally’s Pizza.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
First and foremost I want to thank my fiancée, Rahisha Bivens for working with me to not only bring me new clients but to collaborate with me to discover my talents beyond just being an illustrator. I would like to acknowledge my Mom for always supporting my art and finally my friend Jorge Colombo for being such a great mentor.
Other: Style account on Instagram: @raheemnelsonstyle Photo account on Instagram: @raheemnelsonphoto
Photos of me were taken by Naomi Necy and Frank E. Brady.