Wikipedia defines an artist as “A person engaged in one or more of any of a broad spectrum of activities related to creating art, practicing the arts or demonstrating an art." I like to interpret that as such -- An artist is a hustler. Not as in the fun way we see in videos (i.e. throwing money out of expensive cars windows), but as someone who grinds it out daily and makes sacrifices to achieve his or her goals. Most times, all that people see is the end result. The late night sketching, working every weekend, and forgoing of precious time spent with love ones usually goes unnoticed. It’s the love of creating, the passion for art, and the inherent drive that makes up a true artist. I believe those to be the key ingredients necessary to have any success in this field. And I believe those to be quite prominent in Nathan Brown.
No matter if he’s creating through music, producing events, or painting, Nathan Brown is constantly hustling. Never have I talked to Nathan and not discussed the mountain of work that is on his plate. Usually operating on little sleep, he is constantly working. His portfolio of “cool” gigs is extensive, and after hearing story after story of his experiences and accomplishments I couldn't help but feel the tiniest bit jealous.
Nathan Brown is from Los Angeles, where he was exposed to many cultures, music, and the arts in a thriving metropolitan city. Moving to Nashville at an early age, he felt a void in all of those and began exploring skateboarding, which led to an interest in graffiti. Skating and graffiti both have led him to where he is today. Spray paint is his most common medium, and you may recognize his style of spray painting highly vivid shapes and colors from small pieces to massive scale murals.
Through years of skateboarding semiprofessionally, Brown was able to meet people all over the country, and his interest in the graffiti culture grew more and more with every city he visited. He was able to meet graffiti/street artists with totally different styles and techniques, which helped cultivate his style and also his street smarts. After a long stint with graffiti, painting trains, and tagging walls, he became interested in using spray paint for fine arts, which has brought him to where he is now.
“Being an artist means to have complete freedom,” says Nathan. “I like to physically translate the images in my head onto the wall or canvas I’m painting. Pushing myself to try new techniques and styles. Collaborations with other artists educate me and I love that,” he says.
When asked to name two art-related achievements that make him the most proud, Nathan points out his Metro Nashville Public School mural that was used to bring awareness to the S.T.E.M. program and his recently finished massive 2500 sq. ft. gradient mural found at the Red Rock Tileworks facility.
S.T.E.M. project - http://www.19ss.net/#/metroschools/
Red Rock Tileworks - http://www.19ss.net/#/red-rock-tile-co-mural/
The advice he'd give new artists is “If you're into street art or graffiti, please practice heavily before you hit the streets. Don't be bound by any box -- with art, you can do whatever you want. It's ultimately a creative expression that's inside of you. Don't care what anyone thinks of your art if you are proud of it.”
A hustler is gonna hustle! Staying true to that, Nathan Brown has quite a few mural projects coming up around Nashville for various brands, creative agencies and an architectural firm. He'll update his website and socials as these projects progress, so be sure to give him a follow. His goal for the rest of 2016 is to take a month off of painting murals, allowing him to focus on cultivating the art he has created over the past 2 years. “It's all about progression and learning something new every time I paint.”, says Nathan.
Keep up with Nathan at: www.19ss.net and on Instagram @nathanbrown77
Featured SGB Art Descriptions:
1. The out of in, a study of greenery - 48x24in acrylic spray paint on wood panel.
2. Faded Forest - 12x12in acrylic spray paint on wood panel
3. Duck Release - 18x14in Acrylic and acrylic spray paint on canvas - upcycled
4. To Dine For - 18x14 acrylic and acrylic spray paint on canvas - upcycled
5. Other Words to Live by - 48x24 acrylic on wood