The Raw and the Real in Nashville

Recently I found myself being super busy. Busy to a point that blogging took a back seat.  In all of my busy I have been really networking and trying to become more involved into the fashion/art scene in Nashville.  Well lets just say that hard work pays off.  I was invited to an event called Raw Nashville.  This event was so much fun and exhilarating.  It was even inspirational to be around people with a like mind.  ARTISTIC!  I was in my heaven…. Now to some that means nothing or even like how do you compare the real heaven to an artistic event.  Well in my mind heaven is a beautiful place with beautiful people all being able to enjoy with they love to do.  So Raw Nashville was just that!! A beautiful place with beautiful people all enjoying with they love to do. 

I was in awe at how many underground artist were there with such an unequivocal love for their craft.  When I tell you that I saw some work that was impeccable, whew it blew my mind away.  Designers, painters, music artist, jewelry makers and the list goes on.  I even met a women, Dyanner Brown, that had such a profound message in her art work.  It moved me because not only do women, men and children have a story to tell, but most times the don’t have an outlet that actually (excuse my French) gives a damn. 


work created by Dyanner Brown

This is one of the pieces of work done by Dyanner.  The words on this canvas speaks volumes!  It says a lot about the compassion of the artist, the empathy that burns within her soul, and the blessing to be the voice when others feel like they don’t have one.  Her business card says it all…’Life Worth Loving Advocacy & Art’.  Thank you Dyanner for your voice. 

I also humbly met Arin Phillips, who is a Fashion Photographer.  I absolutely love the images she captured.  You could tell that photography is her passion, that her calm, sweet demeanor went into every image she captured.  In fact, they kind of had me held spell bound.  I kept looking at them and find peace and happiness within her photos.  As a model, I love working with photographers that are soothing, but fun.


Work by Arin Phillips

Arin Phillips also has a very acute eye, that is hard to describe.  Her art speaks for itself.  I am actually looking forward to possibly doing some work with  Ms. Arin. 

Next up Michel’le Walden, a fierce freelance makeup artist. She was intertwined with the fashion segment of Raw Nashville.  My really good friend, Tamika Lasha, modeled for her and the makeup she did on her was flawless.  Tamika modeled a Geisha look and if I didn’t know any better I would have thought she was.  When I tell you it was hands down gorgeous, it was bananas gorgeous.  In addition, Ikyia Fletcher, an incredibly talented hairstylist created all the wigs that the models wore.  Michel’le and Ikyia are a force to be reckoned with.  The world better watch out because this team is blazing a trail all of their own.  These are the type of women I need on my team.  They are about business, growth, and helping uplift each other.  They had fun while creating magic, that just sprinkled through their finger tips.  It was a love for which you could tell this is what they were blessed to do.

After a night full of networking, mingling and learning I was exhausted.  I am overwhelming excited about going to the next Raw Nashville coming up in April.  In fact,I just may enter my work as a designer to showcase my talents and include all of these beautiful ladies on this journey.

I am happy to find there is a platform where artist can showcase their talents and receive genuine interest from people who appreciate  the work created.  I understand the grind work it takes to strive for greatness.  I understand the level of dedication it takes to build an empire or to have the passion to leave a legacy behind for your children.  The grind work is real and is more than just a notion.  It means sometimes sacrificing to put forth the effort to make your dreams come true.  It means sometimes staying up late, to practice or waking up early everyday until you get it right.  I know that I couldn’t imagine doing anything else other than being a designer, helping others reach their goal by blogging and modeling.  I love my craft!  I love the fashion world and all that I get to be within that world.

To read more about Raw Nashville visit
Follow Ikiya on Instagram @blondebeautybeast
Follow Michel’le in Instagram @itsnotmichelle

Also look out for exclusive interviews with these wonderful ladies.


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