I create digital artwork that’s centered around queer people of color! Most of my work is about romantic love, but I also like to paint pieces of chosen families. I focus on queer people of color because I struggled for years not seeing people who look like me. I want to help other people feel visible in the art world that’s often seen as, and quite frankly is, inaccessible to the queer community. ggggrimes

ggggrimes is a 24-year-old digital artist from NYC, who focuses on queer identity and lifestyle in all of their works.

ggggrimes is completely self taught. The only formal art education that they received was in middle school, after they won the chance to take a few art classes at Parsons. Instead, their painting and drawing skills have come from a lifetime of practice and dedication.

They said, "[Art] wasn’t always accessible to me growing up poor, but printing paper and a no. 2 pencil can do wonders with some imagination."

"Chilling" by ggggrimes - "An enby chilling in their room on a beanbag chair. I’ve always wanted a chair like this, and this piece came out while I was daydreaming about having my own room again."

Oftentimes artists are shown to be these never waning people who have an everlasting love for their continued creation. However, as ggggrimes tells, creating is an active choice that comes with a lot of stress and fatigue. Sometimes, the choice to create from a place of necessity rather than a place of want.

"I think people have this idea that an artist’s work is created from something super abstruse and inspiring all the time, and while it often is, most times I’m painting because I have to eat. It’s like any other job, and I have to do it whether or not I’m inspired in a romanticized artistic sense. My overall body of work is inspired by the drive to help queer people feel visible, but my day to day inspiration is reaching a goal of fulfillment in my personal life," explained ggggrimes.

Nevertheless, ggggrimes does love to create and finds inspiration for their work from their daily life, especially from New York City itself.

ggggrimes said, "The New York City you see in shows is so far from reality. We have so many different cultures here living together and interacting with each other. I didn’t fully understand racism until I went to a predominantly white high school with a ton of kids who were upper class. That also helped me decide I wanted to paint people of color. I felt isolated and othered during my entire time in high school."

"We Saw Each Other" by ggggrimes - "Two brown girls of unspecified races sharing an intimate moment. When you’re attracted to people of certain genders, expressing that can be scary. You can end up misreading so often, but sometimes, you take the leap and make a connection you wouldn’t have made without a little bit of gumption. Showing this moment felt so appropriate in comic format."

ggggrimes is an artist like no other because they are not afraid to show the parts of life that may in mainstream society would choose to ignore. Through all of their pieces, gggrimes is an advocate not only for people of color and queer individuals, but for anyone who has ever felt "othered" in their life. More than an artist, ggggrimes is a voice for those who are unable to speak for themselves.

In the future, ggggrimes hopes to become even more bold with their works.

"I hope that in the future my work gets even more bold, daring, and in your face," said ggggrimes. "I want to include colors I never imagined I would use, and express themes that I shy away from now. I want my art to exude confidence and understanding of the human experience while never disconnecting from its roots. My dream job is working with kids or young adults. I’m not sure doing what, to be honest. I don’t know if I want to teach or counsel. But I do know that I love working with youth, and I love when my job revolves around getting people what they want or need.In the future, ggggrimes hopes to become even more bold with their works."

When SiKK Magazine asked ggggrimes what art had taught them, they responded "The most important thing is that I’m worth something. In the sense that my life has meaning, and what I do with my time on this earth matters. Also in the sense that I deserve to be paid for the work that I do. I’m valuable to the people in my life for many reasons, and I can give something to the world that other people can’t. Art really taught me that, and it’s a lesson I learned while having the support of and supporting other incredible artists who are just as passionate and have just as much to offer the world that is their gift alone."

"Hookup" by ggggrimes - "A gay couple hooking up behind a bar. I have a partner who’s also non-binary, but together we’re read as a couple comprised of two women. We can’t go out without being hit on, and it can make a fun night turn to crap. We’ve also been glared at or sexualized. So it was just fun and liberating to imagine a visibly queer couple messing around like a drunk cishet couple and feeling safe and relaxed."

You can view more of ggggrimes artwork by following them @ggggrimes on Instagram.