Today we’d like to introduce you to Camil Williams.
Thanks for sharing your story with us Camil. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I am the daughter and younger sister of really dope artists. My Dad, may he rest in eternal peace, was a phenomenal sketch artist. My Mom is an awesome abstract artist. My big brother is everything hip hop – I still look up to my brother and aspire to reach his level of excellence in art. I grew up in a village (family, community, church, schooling) that was very supportive and art progressive, which exposed me to all kinds of forms of expression. After years of trying to emulate my brother, I started to find my own voices as a visual artist, an emcee, a writer, performer, etc. After leaving college, I returned back to my foundation and decided to walk into my legacy as an artist.
I became a founding member of SpokenExistence, which was a woman-led organization that used the arts to address and eradicate issues that marginalize women of color. Under the SpokenExistence umbrella, veronica Bohanan and I started the performance group, AquaMoon, where we used hip hop feminism, prose and poetry to uplift the female voice and perspective in Hip Hop. We created and performed our choreopoems, Aqua Beats and Moon Verses and Love Does Not Hurt, nationally and abroad. Additionally, during this time, I published my first book of poems, Butta to Fly (2007) and co-authored AquaMoon’s Beats and Verses Volume 1 (2008), both under UnsilencedWoman Press.
The next leg of my journey brought me to Atlanta to help out with a few art projects, including taking roles in several short movies, webseries and full-length films, along with the opportunity to score a stageplay and full-length movie. The plan was to stay for only the summer, but I’ve been here ever since.
During my time in Atlanta, I’ve been able to explore every aspect of my artistic abilities, from the performance and visual arts to music production and fashion design. In 2013 I released my second book of poems, Cold Sweat under Black Freighter Productions, and debuted my multi-faceted art show, After The Sun. My most recent endeavor is becoming a Barber (like my big brother), providing premium services to men, women and children in the Atlanta area. Next, I think I’ll try tattooing.
Has it been a smooth road?
My biggest struggle has been choosing one thing to do. My brain doesn’t work that way. I really enjoy and feel most free being able to move fluidly from painting to playing the drums to writing in my studio. I’ve had to reconcile and re-center my purpose and thoughts on being an artist after making the decision to leave the 9 to 5. Yet, the beautiful struggle is learning all the moving pieces of the art business, from production and accounting to promotion and other legal aspects. It can be tiring at times, trying to accomplish so much but it’s also rewarding. My goal as an artist is to create and share my gifts with those who vibe with it.
We’d love to hear more about your work.
My work centers on ideas of futurism. In my paintings, I use bold lines and thematic colors to express the inherent legacy, beauty and technology of black bodies, as we imagine ourselves into the distant future. Similarly, as a designer, I bring a futuristic flare to clothing, shoes and accessories, using linear embellishments in an avant-garde, progressive interpretation of footwear and apparel, that seeks to transcend the runway and rule the pavement. As a Barber, I provide premium services and quality products to my each of my clients, in a professional and consistent manner. I specialize in original designs and styles for men, women and children. My services include, but are not limited to hair color, deluxe facials, unit & weave installations and scalp micropigmentation.
Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
Atlanta is All The Things you love about the big city, with nature in your backyard. I enjoy living here. Still, I know I’ve only touched the surface of the goodness that Atlanta has to offer.
Honestly, it’s really hard not to like anything about the city during the time of COVID-19. I choose to be appreciative in this moment and hope we can all get back to it soon.
- Website: www.camilwilliams.com
- Instagram: @camil.williams3; @come.ill_cutz; @camil_williams_art; @camilwilliamsshoes