We had the good fortune of connecting with Verbal Equinox and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Verbal, maybe we can start at the very start – the idea – how did you come up with the idea for your business?
I’ve been blessed with different creative talents but I had always found myself trying to focus on one or the other – from drawing, to writing, to music – hopping around trying to find the one thing that I was going to dedicate myself to. However, life has shown me that my one lane is more like a multi-lane highway! That’s what drove me to create The Verbal Equinox, LLC. I believe gifts are meant to be shared, and my business is both inspired and fueled by that belief.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
Life is full of twists and turns and I believe every road has led me to where I am today. My faith is in the beauty and chaos of that journey. All facets of my art are drawn from the human experience. Through my work I try to highlight important themes of that experience like human error, the emotions and the five senses. Along the way, I have learned that authenticity, self expression, and using the senses help me to translate the intangible into something material. The material productions of these things are the art that I share with the world. I believe a common characteristic that most creatives share is sensitivity. Despite whatever capacity, that sensitivity allows us to view and experience the world in, what some may consider, an unconventional way. In the fast-paced, uniform, and rigid world that we live in, the unconventional gets us by. The unconventional is what allows us to honestly express ourselves. That unfiltered, vulnerable self-expression is what is most important to me and the root of my brand. The goal at The Verbal Equinox, LLC is to connect with others, and to help them connect to what inspires them. There is so much to do and learn in the journey of the human experience, and that is what keeps me excited about the future of this business. We will continue to live, learn, inspire, and connect in the most authentic ways.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Visiting Philly for a week can be a wild ride! I would take a day to dedicate to the different parts of the city and surrounding areas. Day one would consist of all the tourist attractions in center city – learn about the history of the city visiting the Liberty Bell, City Hall, the Betsy Ross House and ending the day at Lucky Strike or at a bar in the gayborhood. The next day would be about exploring along the Delaware River at the Penn’s Landing waterfront – perusing the history and sights of South Street and Old City. The day would end on the river either dining by the Spruce Street Harbor Park on the Moshulu or in the Rivers Casino. Another day can be dedicated to traveling north and experiencing the bustling area of Northern Liberties, either stopping by the many shops that line North 2nd street or visiting the small businesses along East Girard Avenue and ending the day at Punchline Philly or the Fillmore. The next day could continue north to learn the history of the communities in North Philly like Templetown, Historic Germantown, and the high spirit Mayfair neighborhood. You could go back to explore the west side of center city that’s home to universities like UPenn and Drexel, or to Baltimore Avenue where black art and dining thrive. You could brave I-76 and go to Manayunk and East Falls along the Schuylkill River. I love my city, there are so many things to do!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
There are so many factors that play into who I am today and where I look to be in the future. I would like to dedicate my shoutout to my hometown of Philadelphia, PA – this city is a gem with many jewels. The city’s creative scene and all the inspiration that flows into and spills out of it has played a part in my growth as an artist. Shoutout to REC Philly, Vinyl Tap 215, Ubuntu Construction Co., Unordinary Individualz, and E. Bennett Art. The blended cultures and experiences of Philadelphia inspired me so much in childhood. Teachers were very impactful to my self-perception: I want to shoutout my grade school art teacher, Anita Custalow. She was a huge inspiration and encouraged me to pursue the arts that interested me. My middle school teachers Rena Price, Thelma Custis, and Lori Webb encouraged my writing and individuality.
I also dedicate my shoutout to those that continued to see my dreams even when they seemed impractical – Reesey Lovee of Get Money Honey LLC, Samone W. of Circa 199X, Reebecca B. of Contemporary Fixations, and Jaxs of Unordinary Individualz.
I would also like to shoutout my family members that have supported me in every endeavor: Briah, Raya, Kia, Quint, Julz, RJ, Sophie, Sam, Rodney, Nature, Meena, Ayesha, JR, Ben… these people have encouraged and supported me when I started to feel that I had no place in the world. Most importantly, I’d like to give a very special shoutout to my son, Alijah, who I do it all for. I’m chasing my childhood dreams to show him that it’s possible to obtain his own.