We had the good fortune of connecting with Monet Maxwell and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Monet, what role has risk played in your life or career?
Honestly, I’m somewhat of an impulsive person, so risks are something that I take often. My career has been built from me taking risks and betting on myself. If I wouldn’t have taken a risk and moved to New York five years ago I think my life would be completely different. Life is so short and we are only here for a certain time. I want to be able to look back and confidently say that I took the risk and did everything I told myself I would do. I think the most successful people took a chance and weren’t afraid of failure.

Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
All of my work features marginalized folks, and it depicts us in a positive light. Growing up as a fat Black girl there weren’t many people to look up too. There was very little representation of other fat black women in the media. Specifically when it came to positive representation. Black people are my passion, especially Black fat and lgbtq+ folks. What sets my work apart from others is that I’m creating art with people that look like me. The work I’m creating is what I wanted to see growing up, that makes the child version of me so happy I’m most proud of my ability to stay true to myself and my vision. I’m excited for the work that I’m continuing to create, being an artist is a privilege and its something I don’t take for granted. It was very hard getting to where I am today. it’s been years in the making. It feels good to know I’ve continued to push thru even when it felt like it wasn’t possible.

There’s been so many lessons along the way. When you are the first in your family to be taking this path you are learning things as you go. I’ve made a lot of mistakes along the way but I’m honest with myself and self-aware so that has helped. I think it’s important to not compare your journey to anyone else’s. There’s so many ways to getting to where you want to be. Sometimes you have to take two steps back to move forward. You have to pivot, you have to be resourceful. When it comes to what I would want the world to know about me, I want them to know that none of this happened overnight. I didn’t do this alone, and I’m where I am because I didn’t give up on me.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I live in Brooklyn, and there’s so much to do here. If someone was visiting I would start off by taking them to breakfast/brunch. I would start off at Piquant in downtown bk. There’s a few art exhibits I’ve been wanting to go to. Today we would start off at King pleasure the new Basquiat exhibit in Chelsea. Then we would go To magnolia bakery for banana pudding, because I’m always in the mood for banana pudding. For dinner, we would go to Jacob pickles on the upper east side. Every day would consist of some type of breakfast and dinner, an activity and of course a dessert along the way.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
When I first moved to New York I met an amazing woman who become one of my good friends. Her name is Dee Williams. She’s an amazing photographer who’s focus is capturing black people and telling their stories. Dee has played a huge part in my story. We created some of my first editorials together, it helped shape who I was becoming artistically. I’m giving Dee a shout-out because she’s so supportive to all her friends and other black creatives. She’s always putting other’s on and never scared to lend a helping hand or spread knowledge. She is also involved in her community and does a lot of work with different community fridges. Dee is so amazing and deserves all her flowers!

Website: Monetmaxwell.net

Instagram: @monetmaxwell

Other: tiktok @monetmaxwell

Image Credits
Image 1 Model, stylist: Me Photog: @Tarikcarroll Hair: @chewy3x_ Make up: @jordonwllis Photog assistant: @giorgioalxndr stylist assistant: @aisyawashington_ Image 2 Model, stylist: Me Photog: @lydiahudgens Image 3 Model, Stylist: Me Photog: @Rochellefatleopard Image 4 Model: Me Photog: @Dcvsk

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