RAW Natural Born Artists in Baltimore Takes Two

On June 2012, Luckie’s Tavern forgot about it lavish Vegas-like atmosphere to host an event for Charm City’s arts scene.

Visual art from Baileymarie Deacon and Timothy Zukas was displayed around the venue.  Live music was provided by up and coming rapper, Alfie Bluu and beatboxer, Shodekeh.


In front of the Powerplant Live bar, Nina Charity mesmerized the audience with her aerobatic skills. The night ended with Margot Rogerson of Beth & Noel putting on a quick runway show.


“The first show went really well and allowed me to make great artistic contacts,” Rogerson said. I was also able to sell several pieces and showcase my work on a full runway.  I was specifically able to meet local business owners that were interested in carrying my product and it allowed me to reach other artists with similar interests. Overall, I would say it was a great experience and I’m glad I did it.”

After a successful first show in June, RAW Baltimore completed their first season in November 2012 with the help of Elisa J. Wells.  The artist turned Director of Raw Baltimore actually started her RAW Natural Born Artist journey in another state.

Elisa J. Wells -Raw Baltimore Director
Elisa J. Wells -Raw Baltimore Director

“Right around the time, I was preparing my work for the [RAW] showcase in Philly, Lauren White [emcee for the RAW DC chapter] had informed me that there was talk of starting a RAW location here in Baltimore,” Wells said. She put me in touch with the Regional Director for the East Coast.  I was interviewed by the executive Director Heidi Luerra and within a week of the interview I was hired as Location Director for RAW Baltimore.”

Once Wells created a RAW Baltimore team, she had to focus on marketing the event.

“The hardest part about getting our first round of events started was bringing awareness to the public that we even existed,” Wells said. That and working with a venue that isn’t meant for art events and transforming it into one.”

Wells started making phone calls, e-mailing contacts, and using social media to inform people about the event. Within six months, the Raw Baltimore team was able to find local talent in various genres of arts.

Michelle Li Murphy, a Pennsylvania based silk artist and fashion designer was impressed by Elisa’s leadership.

“The shows are well organized,” Murphy siad. Every effort is made to assist the fine artists and performers in the set up and promotion of their work.”

Courtney Graham of ShockT Designs participated in RAW Baltimore event in Radiate in August 2012 and was inspired by the atmosphere of artists.

“Being a part of RAW Artist–Baltimore was a real confidence-booster,” Graham said.  I had a chance to be surrounded by other “underground” artists who I could really connect with and talk to about our artist -lifestyles, our triumphs and our struggles. It was exciting to see things you can’t find in any shops or galleries or museums–yet.”

Raw Baltimore’s second season will begin in February 2013 at new venue, TATU.

“Baltimore has an incredible amount of talent here and I want everyone to know it,” Wells said. The fact that RAW is an international arts organization, inspired me to make RAW Baltimore another way to bring awareness to the exponentially growing creative community here in our city.”


Artists, designers, performers, musicians of Baltimore…create and submit your artists profile here: www.RAWartists.org/Baltimore and become part of the national indie arts organization that is RAW Natural Born Artists.