Jamie Sledge–This painting is my beginning and my blessing

“I have been an artist since I was a kid, but I am more of a charcoal artist and draw animals and people. It has been a while since I painted, so I thought I would get back to it. When I was younger, I drew a picture of a car for my dad and he got excited and wanted me to keep doing it. It looked just like the picture and I realized I could draw. It is now how I think. I took all of the art classes that I could and want to make a living with art. This wall is the start of my opportunity to make something happen. I have been working on it for two or three weeks and don’t want it to end. I started with a photograph and pictured the whole thing on the wall, I didn’t really scale it. I want to become a legend as an artist. I do art all of the time, every day.”

“I was stuck for a while in Foley at my stepdad’s house. I didn’t have money, a job or a car. I now live with my grandparents in Fairhope and they take good care of me and I have a job. My mom is my best friend and makes sure I do right. She is amazed with this wall. There was a time before this when I was ready to give up on art and go to college and get a degree, but that was stressful too because there was so much going on, so I started putting some of my art on Facebook to get something started and everyone started liking it. A drawing on Facebook led to this wall. I wanted to got out of the hustle and bad stuff. I went through that in high school because I thought it was cool at the time. But my homies were getting locked up and I wanted to be a changed person and do something with my life. One of my homies was killed in Foley recently and that made me want to just be me and become my own man. My mom tells me all of the time to ‘stay away from trouble, just do you,’ I come here every day so I don’t trouble nobody. God gave me this talent and this is who I want to be. One day I want to teach art and pass it on. People stop by to look at this. One lady gave me an iPad. Someone has talked with me about painting movie sets and someone else wants me to paint a cross on the wall on their church. This painting is my beginning and my blessing.”

This mural is on the Fairhope Sisters Unite building on 7022 Twin Beach Road in Fairhope.

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