31 Days of Dreamers & Doers | Ricky Powell
Starting out doing shows at the Love Jazz to now having his paintings hung in Lolo's Chicken & Waffles, Hugo's Art Gallery as well as 3 different galleries in Colorado - meet the "You dream it, I'll paint it" artist and owner of Stuey Dumb Art Shop, Ricky Powell.
Ricky had been involved with art since the age of 4, but picked up a paint brush for the first time only 2 years ago. Before July 13, 2016, he had never done any painting.
In February 2017, Ricky gave his two weeks notice to the company he'd be working for at the time and as of March 2017, he's been working for himself ever since.
RP: What set me on my path is my Pastor's wife, Loretta Collins, telling me I should work for my self about 3 years ago. July 6, 2017, I met famous abstract artist, Cecil Bernard, who told me I was dope at my craft. I specialized in portraits and I was big into Prisma colors - expensive colored pencils like pastel without the mess. He told me, if I would start painting I will sell more work. Until then I hadn't been into painting, my high school art teacher had been trying to get me to paint for years. I took in what he said and I heard God tell me, 'why don't you try it', went to Youtube and taught myself how to paint. The rest is history.
In 2017, his first full year of painting, Ricky sold 104 original paintings and 5 prints. He is currently working on his second client of this year.
Ricky was recently signed in November to a big art gallery in downtown Denver called the incredible art gallery. Last November, he also participated in a show for the CK Comic Collective in Madison Springs, a show that garnered him the attention to showcase in the Galaxy Fest February 9-11. The Galaxy Fest is similar to a Comicon, usually holding an audience of 4,000+ people, becoming the biggest event of Ricky's career to date. Coming in April, he has 3 different shows in Colorado, one spanning a full month at Cottonwood Art Gallery in Colorado Springs.
"There were a lot of ups and downs for me, but I put God first and he opened doors for me."
Can you name a highlight of your career?
This year I did a Raffle for the suicide walk for 2017. Whoever won the raffle got a free painting from me of their loved one who past. When the client that won came to get his painting of his son who killed himself, the emotion that came from the father was overwhelming to say the least. That would have to be the most fulfilling as of yet.
When speaking to Ricky about also being a Martial Arts instructor as well as a 2nd degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do:
Art is art. Whether you're dancing, whether you're a writer, video art - art is art. Taking something raw and turning it into something else is art. If I take a person who has never studied martial arts, a white belt, and turn him into black belt, that's art.
Don't give up. Whatever you love to do, whether it's the arts or other, find out what you love to do and make it a career. Whatever you would do everyday for free, make it a career. I was doing art everyday for free and now I get paid for it. Put God first and nothing can stop you. I am just a vessel and he creates through me. Without him I am nothing. With him, I am everything.
To check out more art from Ricky as well as events that he has coming up, stay updated with his Facebook page.