We had the good fortune of connecting with Tra’ Slaughter and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Tra’, what led you to pursuing a creative path professionally?
I’ve been an artist since I was a kid. My folks still have paintings I did in high school hanging in their home. Creativity has always been something I’ve had within and following that passion was just a natural path. I studied graphic design at the Art Institute of Houston, received a degree and worked in that field for a few years after graduating. For the past ten-years, fine art has been my main focus.

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.
Prolific work habit is key for me. I try to be in the studio working everyday. Not necessarily creating anything in particular, but an artist must continue to grow and use their tools/craft/talent daily. It is in the moments that we learn something new or continue to hone our skills. Continued learning and growth are key. I work in multiple styles and mediums, and I look at this as a blessing. Moving between styles keeps the work fresh and exciting for me. I’m a storyteller at heart, and I strive for my work to tell not just one story, but many stories depending on the viewer. I’m drawn to works with multiple layers and the discovery of something new upon viewing the works again and again. This is the kind of work that I like to create as well. I feel that art should mark time for people in the future to be able to reflect back on and understand what was happening with the world at different times. #artmarkstime

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I honestly spend most of my time between studio and home. My studio is in the old Jefferson Davis Hospital and has been converted into 34 live/work artist lofts. It is said to be haunted. So, of course some time would be spent there. Houston is known for its patios, so weather permitting any good patio in town serving a good margarita or Topo Chico works for me. Night time, we’d eat at Riel or Alma Latina. Two opposite ends of the spectrum, but they’re my faves! I hate bars. As far as the people of Houston… it’s small-town vibes in a big city, so any of my out-of-town pals feel right at home just about anywhere in town.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
There have definitely been several people that have been behind me all the way, but in the last few years my work and career have taken a turn for the better, and I owe that to my wife, Amber Slaughter. My kids, Harper and Jett are strong supporters, cheerleaders and often collaborators as well. To the Houston art scene as a whole, collectors and supporters, thank you!

Instagram: @artist_traslaughter

Facebook: Facebook.com/trabird

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutHTX is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.