We had the pleasure of speaking with artist and muralist Renda Writer this month! Read our conversation to learn more about him below:
When did you begin your artistic journey?
At birth. Pablo Picasso is quoted as saying that, "Every child is an artist." And I believe him. LOL. So the journey began at birth, but I became more consciously aware of it in 2000, when I started writing poetry. I used to write a lot, and I'd perform at the Nu Yorican Poets Cafe and the Bowery Poetry Club. I also recorded a few CDs, and I used to sell them on the street corners in Manhattan. Then, around 2010-2013, I started to experiment with taking my love for words from written and spoken word poetry into the visual realm. It was a natural progression that lead my journey from poet to visual artist, but I still very much consider myself a poet, and I even look at my canvas pieces and murals as pieces of poetry. The journey is still going.
What inspires you?
I think inspiration comes from within. If you know how to inspire yourself, then you know how to find inspiration in everything. Literally everything.
What are some things you love about New York?
Three words. Bacon. Egg. Cheese. Boom.
But aside from that, I also really love the art community in New York. They're like family to me. All the street artists, curators, Lower East Side art people. Those are my people, and they make New York feel like home to me. And a big shout out to The Sour Mouse, in the LES. I'll be having a solo art show there in October.
I also really love the garbage in NYC. I'll explain.
One of my favorite things to do is to just walk around the city and find garbage, furniture, and discarded items that I can turn into art. I love leaving my main messages ( "Your Comfort Zone Will Kill You," "Love is a risk. Do it anyway." ) on discarded items, and adding my Instagram handle, and then waiting to see who takes a pic and tags me. I have met a lot of cool people this way.
What advice do you have for inspiring artists?
In 2013, when I was living out of my car, working at a juice shop, and only dabbling in making art, I read an interview with Banksy in The Village Voice. He said, "If you want to be successfull as an artist, it's not that hard. All you have to do is devote your entire life to it." That quote seriously changed me. It hit hard. I read that, and I was like, "That's what I'm gonna do. I'm gonna just devote my whole life to my art. I literally have nothing to lose." And so that's what I did. And that's what got me here. And that's what keeps me going.
What insight can you provide on how to become a full-time artist?
Quit fucking around. Get serious about it right now. Take the next small step that will get you one step closer to where you want to be. Seriously, quit fucking around. Full time means "FULL TIME" and it starts NOW!