As we countdown the days to Raw Baltimore’s RAWards 2013, we are going to take a look at some of the Director Highlights of 2013.
To quote Elisa Wells, Director of Raw Baltimore: “I would like to thank all of the incredible artists that we have been lucky to work with and that worked hard. We appreciate each and everyone’s participation in RAWards 2013. We heart you Bmore artists!”
Be sure to check out Ms. Charm’s Chic for coverage and exclusive interviews with Raw Awards 2013 winners/nominees soon!
In a grand stone house in Northeast Baltimore, Len Bell and his wife. Heather, create visual masterpieces that embody Cross Cultural aspects. Loime Studios is a combination of this husband and wife team love for art. The RAWards 2013’s Director Highlight honoree, Bell, artistic aspirations began as a traditional American Indian dancer. He created traditional Indian regalia and ceremonial art. After enlisting in the Military and going to college, Len decided to start illustrating again.
Since returning to his passion of making art, he has illustrated two children’s books and have other ongoing projects such as poetry illustrations, band logos and CD art. Bell made his Raw Baltimore debut at Marvel in April 2013.
Currently, he has began carving masks and bowls as a way to return to his artistic roots.
What inspired you to be a part of Raw Baltimore?
I had been thinking for a while about seeking some gallery space to start showing again. I had illustrated a couple of children’s books and had some other ongoing projects, but really wanted to push beyond selling on Etsy. Elise, the director actually got in touch with me there and it was a great inspiration to open up and become a part of the exhibit. I’ve shown in a lot of group shows and galleries before. After the experience I have had with RAW, I am amazed at how well RAW is designed toward helping artist – whether its boosting confidence or expanding your career.
What do you remember the most about your Raw Baltimore experience?
I was so nervous the night of the walk through. I hadn’t shown my work publicly in 15 years so I felt completely out of touch, but as soon as they showed me my section of the wall, I went into overdrive deciding what to show. Elise had seen a series of mermaid illustrations I had recently completed and was envisioning me displaying those.
I decided they just weren’t going to display as well in the space so I went home and began a completely new series of paintings that night. I’m not sure the paint was even finished drying the night of the show!
I also began a running commentary on Facebook about preparing for the show and got into a discussion with Lauren about whether I should wear my leather pants or my kilt which was a pretty hilarious opening to our friendship as well.
What does it mean to you to be a Raw Baltimore Director Highlight?
I was absolutely blown away when I received the call. We had a death in the family just as nominations were beginning and I just didn’t attempt to get into seeking votes.
I was planning to be at the show to support fellow artists and new friends who were semi-finalist, so getting to be a part of that experience by exhibiting my own creations is a great honor. Honestly, Elise’s encouragement has been paramount for me and this is the greatest accolade I could imagine.
Check out A. Len Bell and his art: