The Conception of n.Light.n

I put my last $1.50 in the machine to get on the train to head downtown.

A month earlier, someone was watching one day as I was beading the panels for Malkia, my Maasai inspired pieces,  at a Starbucks and approached me about paid wire wrapping teaching sessions. We met for our first session a week prior so I was confident that there would be no issue using this money for train fare.

So I put my last $1.50 on my TAP card to get on this train excited to teach once again. It has been one of my favorite things to do.

He never showed up.

Great, now I’m downtown, with absolutely no money to get back home. This homeless man approaches me asking for change. I chuckled and looked at him.

“Seems like we’re in the same boat, do you have any change for me?“

He looked with his tattered clothes and unkempt facial hair and said, you are too pretty to be broke.

There are so many topics of discussion with that statement but I will stay on the path with my story.


Walking down the street calling my now former student. No answer.

Not knowing what my next plan of action should be, I called one of my mentors who lives in the area.

At this moment I am crushed. I used the last bit of what I had to make more money and I felt defeated, empty, and wanting to put up the artist hat and go chill on the corner with the homeless man.

It felt like my creative self just went into a coma, my drive dropped dead, and I just didn’t know what to do. Very dramatic, I know, but at the moment, I couldn’t see bright side to this situation and that feeling of lack was overwhelming.

I guess my mentor heard the sound of defeat or the brink of my creative abandon. He said, I’ll be right over.

Maybe it was the look in my eyes or the sense my current state of hopelessness but he did something that shifted my focus tremendously.

This man shoots bright rays of sunshine when he speaks. His mantra is, I LOVE MY LIFE. He is so jovial and an extremely creative photographer. It’s as if life bends itself around him because he is living in passion and gratitude for the life that has been given to him. He has surrendered to his work and it is absolutely fabulous.

He opens up his iPad and starts showing me his work. Showing me beautiful images from product shots, fashion, lifestyle, portraits, and headshots. Strong photos of creative people, beautiful models wearing beautiful wearable art made of leather, bright colored materials, metal, snake skin, and more amazing pieces of art. All the while I’m thinking, wow, this is absolutely beautiful but I’m drawing blanks for my own work. I had absolutely nothing I was inspired to create. NOTHING.

After looking through his spectacular photos, maybe he saw I wasn't quite inspired just yet. So he looks at me and he says…watch what’s been inspiring me.

It was the Beyonce visual album.

I didn't want to watch that! My desire was to share my stories of how difficult my artist's journey has been and about my struggle, not see this juggernaut of a woman serve me greatness on a platter. No, wasn't interested.

I sat there and watched video after video. In the state that I was in, I really didn’t want to watch, I just wanted to lay in the stench of pity but as I began to pay attention to the production, the lyrics, how her voice has definitely changed since her Crazy in Love era, the time and energy it took for her to put something so theatrical together, and the creativity of the people involved on her team, AND for her to surrender her life over to her work, something happened.

In that moment I let go of this relentless feeling of hopelessness and gave into the creativity that was presented to me through my mentor and the most random teacher in that moment, Beyonce. (as I laugh while writing that.)

He puts down his iPad and we start talking about what I want in life, what I want to create. That’s when it happened. I got this surge of energy  and excitement, grabbed the closest napkin and started sketching. A neck full of cascading crystals.

I wish I still had that napkin.

Full of inspiration from an amazing mentor who continuously expresses, I LOVE MY LIFE, and who would’ve thought, Beyonce, I put behind the emotions of that past sob story and was filled to the brim with excitement of this new piece I was creating.

I guess my spirit knew in that moment I needed a reminder that there are always opportunities for us to raise our vibrations, focus on the good that surrounds us.

The moment I let go of that stupid story and self pity, I was open to inspiration and creativity just flowed through.

That’s how n.Light.n was conceived.