We had the good fortune of connecting with 303JAC and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi 303JAC, what’s one piece of conventional advice that you disagree with?
Erase the idea of pleasing people. Every decision you make should be beneficial to you and your own personal growth. No matter what you do, someone is bound to not like it, you can’t please everyone, so why not focus on yourself. Start working towards/focusing on what will put a smile on your face when you get out of bed every morning. Find what that one thing is, practice it, and become the very best you can be.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I would pin-point the extremes set me apart in my visuals. Most of my images contain dark shadows and vibrant whites accompanied with high contrast providing depth to my photos opped to a flat film scan. I love looking at my images and feeling the raw emotion in it. My proudest work has rather been identified as just the way I am navigating through the city. I was really proud of my constancy and work ethic allowing me to shine through as a visual artist in a new city.
It took me about six years to truly find my lane in the creative world. It definitely wasn’t easy. A broken relationship, friends moving away, watching the ones you went to school with graduate while you dropout to pursue a passion with a blind future, working 8 hours a day followed by a six hour music video shoot with no pay, the reality is that the list could really go on + on, but to me that is the beauty of it. The journey is the most important part, the lessons I have learned these past six years are irreplaceable.
The only way to power through it is focus on what you love, what makes YOU happy. Not your parents, not your significant other, not your friends, do what YOU think is right for you. It’s YOUR life, not your parents or boyfrind/girlfriend’s, At the end of the day, if you lose everything you own and the world hates you , you will still have to go to sleep in YOUR own body and mind so you might as well be happy doing what you still love in that moment.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Oh Man! Now that I have at least five years of Nashville residency under my belt I finally feel comfortable speaking on this. I would definitely highlight a few restaurants. Otaku Ramen as well as Two Ten Jack Ramen has become a go-to spot for me. Slim + Husky’s, The Pharmacy Burger, and M.L. Rose have become Nashvile staples for me. Don’t tell anyone but there is an amazing hole-in-the-wall wing’s spot near Printer’s Alley but I refuse to give it away. 615 Deli has some amazing sandwiches if you need something on-the-go.
EG+MC has some of the best drinks in the city as well as The Graduate hotel which contains a rooftop bar inspired by Dolly Parton.
Nightlife is always an option at The C.E. Gallery or the NKA Gallery. You also might find interest in any one of the many concert venues open to the public.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
There wouldn’t be a “303JAC” without a handful of people. My success is heavily defined by my mentors, friends, family, and community. Specifically I would like to shine light on the Dadabase, which is a creative collective of 14 of my closest friends that all do something a little different (rapping, singing, songwriting, producing, painting, photography, videography, graphic design, modeling…you really name it). Everyday I am able to wake up and create something new with them which has been a blessing, not a lot of people have such versatile connections and the fact that I can call them family is something you dream about as a kid, ya know? I would say trusiifuu + ecnarc + osagie vsn + conn0r + liternea + blur.boy + freespec + visionsbynight + and lastly mangomaat would be the ones to thank for shaping my eye into what it is when digging for inspiration and looking for the correct aesthetic. I ironically was a fan and following each one of them for 6+ months before finally reaching out to them. I owe them more than I can ever repay or they will ever know.
I would say I do have a few figures in my life that have shaped me as a persona that I would like to thank. First, being the only four friends I had in high school. You four harbored my creative mind and always supported the little dumb ideas I would come up with. There was never an ounce of doubt or negativity towards my art from them.
$avvy has also been extremely influential to how I move about the city being so new to the creative scene as well as being the first person to really let me express my creativity to a proper audience. I owe him the world.
Lastly, definitely my parents and my younger brother. I have felt nothing but endless support and love from them.
But again, honestly, my biggest thank you goes out to every pair of eyes that has graced my work. Every like and follow on Instagram that has fueled me into the creative scene. Every single artist in The Ville that has given me a chance, thank you.
There are way too many people to thank, I have an amazing support system.
personal photo – @trusiifuu evrything else – @303jac