Meeting with Bloved, from City of Concorde in California, at 27 he tells us about his amazing journey.
Why choose Bloved, what does mean?
To make a long story somewhat short, I used to go by a different name for a few years when I was heavily painting and tattooing around the age of 22. I struggled heavily with depression, suicidal thoughts, and a lot of other emotions. At my lowest and darkest point I prayed and asked Jesus to save me, (I was empty, lost, and felt like I was going crazy), and he did. I took a year or 2 off from painting and when I decided to come back I didn’t want to write the same name anymore. Jesus had completely changed and healed me, so my old name no longer represented me, and that’s when I chose Bloved but spelled out Beloved.
I chose it for many reasons but the main reason is found in Matthew 3:16-17 and Ephesians 1:2-6, google it (I am Beloved by God because of Jesus, and anyone else can be as well, to sum it up).
Want you tell us which name you write before?
I went by the name Antes / Sir Antes.
Since how many times you paint?
I started painting around the age of 15, so on and off over 12 years.
You drawing before starting the writing?
Yes, I used to draw the old English alphabet and copy the brown pride t-shirt designs as a kid for girls before diving into graff.
Why choose writing?
I honestly didn’t choose it, I feel more like it chose me. I had an older brother that did it (big shout out to Vastr). I remember sneaking in his room as a kid and flipping through his black book and being intrigued by the colors and hand styles not being able to read them, but yet finding them so appealing and interesting. When I was a bit older between 10-14 he would come in my room while I was drawing and write my name in front of me and I’d be so amazed trying to mimic it but failing miserably. He kicked me down the game and taught me everything he knew and I’m forever grateful for it. He passed me the torch and I just ran with it. I fell in love with graff and letters.
Your brother continues to make writing?
Unfortunately no, he retired from painting actively. A writer never loses the itch though.
You looking for what when you create letters?
I look for anything honestly, I really like grungy, textured, and aggressive letters, but also equally love simple, clean, and well-executed lettering.
What is your inspiration?
Anything and everything. I always tell people to draw inspiration from anything that’s lettering. Don’t limit yourself to just “Graff”. Lettering is all around you in the form of signs, advertisements, products, etc. I look at other fellow graph writers, tattoo artists, sign painters, calligraphy artists, Graphic designers, there’s so many different styles and ways to execute the same letter, even more so when you factor in color combos. don’t limit yourself. take the qualities you love most about each thing that inspires you, throw it all in a blender and come up with your own version of it.
How we can define if the letters are good or not?
This question can be hard to define, because of people’s opinions and what they like. For example, someone that likes dirty, « grimey », and grungy lettering might think a simple and clean piece or hand style is ugly even though it may be well executed.
In my personal opinion when I look at lettering I look for consistency, uniformity, balance, each individual letter structure, creativity/uniqueness, legibility, cleanliness, texture, flow, and style. I believe the biggest emphasis should always be your letters. When I first started writing I wanted to go crazy wild style with cool color combos but my letter structure was weak. As the years went on and I matured artistically I was attracted more to simpler pieces and lettering because they’re harder to execute. You can’t hide behind extensions, arrows, or extra bits. It’s just the raw lettering and if you don’t have style, or structure it will show. Now, this doesn’t mean I don’t like wildstyle, grungy, ornamental, or abstract lettering. but I believe your lettering should be your strongest suit and the focus, anything else is just extra and should simply complement your letters ( this is my opinion if you think differently that’s on you).
You drawing characters also, what you prefer drawing and why?
Graff wise no. I usually only do letters but I do want to try painting some characters.
When I oil paint or sketch I do a lot of birds, skulls, paint caps, and girls.
Do you live with your art?
Yes. I’m a freelance artist. I do graphic design, sell oil/acrylic paintings, hand styles, murals. anything artistic really.
Can you tell us how the writing comes to your city and when?
I don’t know when or how it came.
How people and authorities see the writing in your city?
It’s not accepted as an art form in my city. It’s a very clean cut where I live with little to no murals.
The writing scene is big in your city, your country?
There was a small scene but I feel like it died out because of the location. there are the occasional hand styles you see but no bombing or legal walls. I’m 15/20 minutes away from Berkley or Oakland so anyone trying to paint would head out there.
Do you have some particular stories to tell us?
I started tattooing around the age of 16/17. when I gave my life to Christ I quit for a year including art. I went back and forth with tattooing over 4 years until I felt like God told me it was time to let it go. I had a regular 9-5 job for 2 ½ years
Until I went full-time artist in march of 2019.
I was out of the graff scene for a long time until I got back into it in March of 2018. I started practicing my hand styles and got back to painting walls and canvases with a new passion, posting videos, and recording the process on Instagram. Fast forward a year and 9 months later (its December 10th, 2019 as I write this.) I’ve been able to make a living from it as a full-time artist. In that time frame, God has prospered and blown up my career as an artist more than the 8 years I spent tattooing. Its never too late to start something you’re passionate about, but it takes dedication, consistency, and sacrifice.
Do you have some projects currently?
I have a lot in the works, one being is I’ll be releasing a lettering book soon so stay tuned.
Do you have a word for the end?
If you’re reading this and you’re starting out writing or just love lettering, you can make a living from it, it ain’t easy and takes a lot of hard work, consistency, and sacrifice but you can do it. Use social media to your advantage. Show respect to everyone regardless of their skill caliber. Avoid beef, it’s pointless. People will talk trash, just simply ignore em and keep grinding. You matter and have a greater purpose, don’t be afraid to dream big and don’t settle for less.
Big thank you to Vastr, Spooks, and Chez for mentoring and kicking me down the game in different forms as well as Carlos M, Roger, Ruben, and Pastor Ralph for praying and interceding on my behalf through the different points of my life.
To My mom for putting up with me, as well as supporting my art and loving me unconditionally.
To my wife for being my biggest cheerleader and fan as an artist.
Last but not least to Jesus Christ for saving, completely transforming, and forgiving me. if you don’t believe or know him personally I challenge you to ask him to show you how real he is.