The undeniable link between graffiti and hip-hop is marked by the culture that was conceived in the Bronx in the 1970s. Since then hip-hop has matured into a prominent artistic culture in America that is arguably something completely different from how it began. Originally consisting of music, graffiti and breakdancing, hip-hop culture has created a platform for urban city dwellers to express themselves and voice their concerns about societal issues. Doze Green, graffiti artist and social commentator, is known as a legend of culture’s uprising.
Children are not only the future, they’re an intricate part of the present. Making history in different industries, and pioneering new opportunities for their peers and the next generation of children as well. There’s 14-year-old actress, Marsai Martin, executive producing her latest film “Little.” Also the 4-year-old child prodigy of drumming, Justin “LJ” Wilson, who got America’s attention on the Ellen Degeneres Show earlier this year.
Lately, it has become nearly impossible to remain inside our own little bubbles. You can be transported to places you’ve never seen or heard of by just turning your TV on or logging onto social media. I wake up on a typical Monday morning, get dressed, have some coffee and turn on the news to realize that I was lucky to have a boring peaceful weekend. There are so many things happening every day around the world; innocent people dying, violations of human rights; corruption; drugs; diseases; hunger, you name it. The saddest thing is that we all know about it, we condemn and complain about it, but we don’t do anything to change it, we only rely on someone else’s good deeds.
In early May news broke of Dr. Dre’s promise to become the first billionaire of hip-hop. Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and every media site was all a buzz about the history that was to be made through the likely sale of the headphone and speaker company, Beats Electronics. Owned by American record producer, rapper and entrepreneur Andre Young better known by his stage name Dr. Dre and record & film producer, best known for co-founding Interscope Records, James “Jimmy” Iovine, the sale of Beats Electronics to Apple Inc. for a whopping $3.2 billion is definitely worth talking about.
The self-taught artist, J.D. Hillberry, has been a professional artist for almost 20 years. Over this time, he has become the most respected and well known artist in his field. His charcoal and pencil drawings are praised for being life-like and his style interests viewers because it plays with their perception of reality and tells a story. His book, Drawing Realistic Textures in Pencil, has sold over 50,000 copies to date and it is now considered a classic drawing instruction book that is used by student all over the world. However, although Hillberry always enjoyed art when he was younger, he never thought he was going to be an artist.
You know that dream, the one that escalates you from a life of financial nightmare and turns you into an uber successful Blair Waldorf (Gossip Girl) donning Chanel and Versace on the Upper East Side of Manhattan? Well, sometimes, that actually happens.
Briggs’ passion for music and performing started at a very young age. While her family still lived in Japan, Briggs explained in an interview with Entertainment Weekly the very moment she recalls falling in love with the art. “I think it’s a rite of passage that the minute you land in Japan, you have to go to a karaoke bar. So that’s what my family did. I moved there when I was 4.” She continued, “My dad went up and sang Frank Sinatra, and I just saw this joy and this light in his eyes, and I just wanted a piece of it.”
Briggs got the piece that she wanted, and then some. She also took to karaoke while in Japan, giving her the opportunity to sing in public and showcase her talents. She was later discovered while performing at a bar in LA. This led to her working with the production team of Mark Jackson and Ian Scott. The irony of being discovered performing at a bar, in similar fashion to stumbling upon her love for performing at the karaoke bar with her dad at 4-years-old. They worked with her on her debut single, “Wild Horses,” and her first single off the album “River.” “Wild Horses” took on a life of its own shortly after being released. The song was picked up by Acura and used in one of the car company’s commercials. The song caught the attention of many of her future fans, who discovered her by using the Shazam app in order to find out who performed the song.
She’s since had the pleasure of performing at Coachella in 2017, before her debut album had even dropped. Her debut album “Church of Scars,” came out in April 2018, introducing the world to her sound. Which is often described as “dark,” but that doesn’t seem to bother her one bit. In the hit single, “River,” she described a scenario of falling out of love “faster than a hairpin trigger.” Some of her songs are about love. Her single, “Baby” is one that has a different element. “I’m very drawn to darkness, so the thought of releasing a song that wasn’t so heavy didn’t seem in character,” the singer-songwriter said in an interview with Billboard. “But I felt like it was too honest to not release it.”
As the images pop up, there’s a lot to process. Bright colors, large eyes and words all come together in one piece. When these types of works show up, art is no longer a spectator sport. We are involved and become a part of this world. Joseph “Sentrock” Perez has created a graffiti-based work of art that screams at you in both pictures and words.
Amancio Ortega is the third richest man in the world and but many people have not heard of his name until now. His company is more famous then the man behind the scenes. Ortega founded Zara, an affordable retail store that sells quality merchandise to consumers. Ortega, is from Leon, Spain, his father worked on the railroad and his mother helped support the family by working as a maid.
“When I started my first business,” entrepreneur Cher’Don Reynolds explains, “I simply wanted to put messages of empowerment and celebration on shirts. I wanted customers to have the option of glitter, rhinestones and different colors.” But it didn’t take her long to find out that what she wanted didn’t quite fit her start-up budget.