We had the good fortune of connecting with Faithe Bey and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Faithe, what habits do you feel play an important role in your life?
The ability to reflect, and change. There’s this quote that goes, “God grant me the serenity to accept the things that I cannot change, change the things that I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.” My religious views have changed, but that saying always stayed near my heart. It sounds simple and obvious, but when I first started my business, and things were going super well for it, as small as I was, it was hard for me to take advice from others. I thought I knew everything. I wanted to do everything alone.
It wasn’t until my business grew bigger than me that I accepted my family’s help. They’ve always offered, but I was too controlling to accept it before.
I’ve gotten as far as I have today because I’m open to change; whether it’s a curveball in business, or a personality trait of mine that needed some work. You have to learn to go with the flow sometimes.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
It’s hard for me to describe my art right now. I’m currently in a place where I’m trying a bunch of different styles and mediums, and I’m trying not to box myself in like I have in the past. Right now, it’s safe to say that my focus is on oil and acrylic paints. The pieces that I’m currently working on reflect a series of my emotions. I recently went from being in a really dark place to a really bright one. I only got there from embracing every moment, the good and the bad, and by taking the weight of the world I placed on my own shoulders. With this “collection,” I’ll be vulnerable in a way that no one has really seen me before, not even myself. I’m a little nervous, but mostly excited to share this new side of me with the world! These pieces will be revealed at the All That 90s Art Exhibition in Los Angeles on September 9th.
It took me a long time to see it, but I’m a creative trailblazer, and I’m so proud of it. I started my first business in high school, and my second one in college. I’ve been featured in many articles and exhibitions all before graduating. I had a talent for hyper-realistic painting, and so many of my friends, family, and professors recognized it. My most honorable moment in college was when my art professor/advisor gave me his old oil painting supplies after I expressed an interest in it. He saw something in me then that I didn’t see in myself. With all this being said, I believe that the only thing that sets me apart from others is the way I perceive myself. I’m a trailblazer because I believe it’s true.. I’m a talented artist who will one day live off of her art because I believe it’s true. How I perceive the light in myself is something that no one can take away from me.
Getting to where I am today has been an exciting journey. I’ve learned new ways to express my ideas through fashion, and what it’s like to wear a billion different hats when starting a business. I would say that most of all I’ve learned a lot about myself, who I want to be, and what kind of mark I want to make on this world.
I feel like in the world of social media, you mostly see the accomplishments of those we know or don’t know at all (but think we do). On the other side of that screen, it’s not as easy or happy as one might think. Starting a business is one thing, but growing it and making it sustainable can be challenging. I’ve learned that you’re not always going to be rewarded right away. Results take time. There’s also a lot of trial and error that I never would’ve anticipated when I was just selling 8×10 prints.
The most important lesson that I’ve learned so far is that the support of others can only carry you so far. You have to believe in yourself without anyone telling you you can do it. If that outer support disappears, and that’s the only reason you ever thought you could do it, you’ll crumble.
I still struggle with receiving confirmation from others, and it doesn’t help when social media is integrated into your daily life. But it’s something I’m getting better at managing every day, so I’m once again proud of myself.
I want the world to know Faithe Bey as a respected artist and entrepreneur who turned her thoughts into visual experiences'[. I tell my family this all of the time, but my long-term goal is to be able to drop a collection, and disappear. Then when I’m ready, I’ll come back and do it all over again. I’ve spent the last two years more or less doing collections back to back, all work no play. I fell into a depressive state because working was all I was doing.
I look around the world today, especially on social media, and see so many people in negative headspaces. The worst part of it all is that it’s almost like our generation is comfortable with it. Like there’s no hope left. I’ve heard too many times someone say they’re depressed, or have nothing to live or, or that life sucks, and they’ll just laugh it off.
I know what it’s like to be in that dark place. I know what it’s like to pretend that things are okay. I know what it’s like to be so far gone, that you don’t even want to pretend anymore. I never want to go into that dark place again, and I hate that so many young people are there. This is what I want the future of Faithe Bey Art to reflect. I want those out there in the dark to know that they are not alone anymore, and I want to show them that through my art.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I just moved to Tampa at the end of last year, so I would actually love it if someone could give ME an itinerary!
I’m also an introvert who will always look for an excuse to stay at home, so my itinerary probably isn’t a banger.
I usually hang out at the beach in the morning, when there’s still a cool breeze outside, and watch the sunrise. Sometimes I’ll bring my sketchbook, but I usually end up feeling so relaxed laying in the sun that I take a little nap!
When I want to work outside, I’ll go to Joeffrey’s Coffee in midtown Tampa, or Lady In The Mug downtown. They have the funniest decor all around the place; I love it because it reminds me to not take life too seriously.
When I want to go out on the weekends, I’ll go to Ybor or St. Pete’s.
Like I said, I really need a Tampa itinerary for myself!
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I would have to put my family at the top of that list. They have supported me in every way possible, from helping me package orders to modeling for me to hearing me cry about my perceived failures. When we combine our strengths, my siblings and I make an unimaginable team. My brother, Justus Bey has taught me so much about analytics, data, and marketing. Both him and my sister, Tai-Ling Bey, are the creative geniuses behind the marketing that you see in our Faithe Bey Art newsletters. My other sister, Jolésa Starks always knows the right thing to say when customers need anything. My parents have supported me in every way from the very beginning (it was my Dad who bought me my first sets of oil paints.)
Needless to say. my business today would be absolutely nothing without any of them.
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Taken By Cayden Brown.jpg – Cayden Brown