Being a successful artist isn't easy. Just ask any one of them and they'll likely tell you that the term "starving artist" can ring very true and very loud. When you throw in the limits and expectations society can place upon them and their work, it's sometimes difficult to understand how any works of art could be created at all.
Robert Fairley lll says he's no stranger to the mental strains of the business and life itself and says he's also struggled with depression and battled with the demons of anxiety and the demands of trying to fit in and fall in line with societal norms. Robert, who's openly gay, says he wasn't always as " out and proud" as he is today. He says that even though he was always a vibrant, creative, and funny person, he was, at one time, struggling with his identity, finding it extremely hard to be his true self.
Robert says that one day though in 2018, he decided that he'd had enough. He decided to come out. He concluded that if people couldn't accept him for who he truly was, it was their own problem and not his burden. Robert says he also decided that the real people in his life would stick around and the fake ones would not and he was ok with that. He says that once he came out, there was a huge weight lifted off of his shoulders and he could finally move forward confidently, leading him to be more comfortable within himself and his work.
This newfound confidence paid off. He soon began catching the eye of an adoring fan base as well as many celebrities on social media. Robert, whose work ranges from commissioned pieces as well as erotic art as well, has painted for celebrities such as Cardi-B and K-Michelle. He fondly remembers how he first met Cardi outside of a nightclub after one of her concerts and he was wearing shoes he had painted with her likeness on them. He says he held his shoe up in the air so the famed rapper could see it. Robert says Cardi then told her security to bring Robert closer so that she could get a better look at him and the shoes. She was in awe of them. She ended up keeping the right shoe and Robert(still to this day) has the left one.
He also says that K.Michelle still raves about the t-shirt and jacket he painted for her as well and on occasion, showcases his art by re-posting his creations and pieces.
Long gone is the person who once shied away from showing his true colors. In its place, is someone who revels in the vibrancy of life and lives it to the fullest by sometimes dancing online in his favorite high-heeled boots and belting out songs while he whips up masterpieces as his eager audience looks on. When asked who he lists as his biggest inspirations, he says rapper Nicki Minaj definitely earned her spot there by being successful in the rap industry for 10 plus years. He says that reason alone inspires him to push his paintbrush to keep creating and never give up. Heading the list though is his mother who he says inspires him to keep living and reminds him that he has a purpose. He also says that his definition of success is being able to support himself and live comfortably with the fruits of his artwork.
Robert says that the biggest obstacle he's had to face is to stop listening to others’ opinions and to start focusing solely on his own growth as an artist. Doing so has afforded him the bonus of being able to quit his job and now work solely on his craft.
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