I stumbled upon James Martin on social media, and I was immediately drawn to his content and his laid-back vibe. What sets him apart is his willingness to share valuable information in an industry filled with gatekeepers.
Our paths finally crossed last summer in Austin, Texas, where we both happened to be guest speakers at Crop Cons. It was pretty awesome because we hit it off right away, and it felt like we'd been buddies for years.
During his talk, he got real personal, sharing his experiences as a victim of child abuse. Without missing a beat, I yelled out, "You've got this, Papa!" to show my support. Afterward, we got to chatting about the possibility of collaborating. While brainstorming ideas, I couldn't shake the impact of his talk, and that's what fueled my inspiration for this artwork.
Now, I might not have lived through what he did as a kid, but I can totally relate to the struggles of dealing with mental health, depression, and anxiety as a creative. So, I came up with this art piece, featuring a lightbulb juxtaposed with a skull-shaped maze to represent the mental acrobatics we often go through.
Mental health is a big deal for me, and I want people to know they're not alone when their brains throw a wrench in their creative works. It's like a superpower in its own way. Even when I'm a bit hard on myself, I power through it and create something I'm genuinely proud of, even if it takes me a while.
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