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Lem Collins, a fine artist from South Carolina found his love for the arts at a young age through drawing and painting. There hadn’t been many outlets for creatives like himself, but he acknowledged his talent at a young age. Mentors and teachers encouraged him to indulge in the arts scene. Collins moved away from this passion as a child as his exposure to successful creatives was limited. “I started out drawing and painting but got away from it because I didn’t know anyone who was an artist. I didn’t know how to make he moves an artist.” Like many of his peers, most of his energy had been invested in playing sports. 


After graduating from South Carolina State University he moved to Atlanta to focus on his aspirations of becoming an actor. After beginning his career in the acting field, Collins felt there was more here for him, that there was something missing. Years later he rediscovered his love for the arts and more specifically painting. From there, his work blossomed as he used his social media presence to advertise his work, beginning to peak the interest of potential buyers. Here he made the connection between his younger self and his present self as he soon learned how he could make money doing what he loved. In the beginning stages, a combination of networking and forming relationships helped Collins increasing the exposure around his work. Over the past two years, he’s experienced a new embrace among his fellow artists in order to make connections and creative collaborations. He has a strong passion for his art and the city he’s chosen to create in. Collins sees Atlanta as a hidden gem in regards to the art scene that people are just starting to recognize and acknowledge. 


As an artist, Collin emphasizes the importance of consistency. Like many other creatives, he’d experienced times of intense work periods lending him to an equal period of rest and exhaust. He recalls, “I’ve had some times where I would work, work, work and then burn myself out then take a while off, then later having to jump back into where I started.” This lesson jump started his creative process as he soon realized that in order to maintain his presence and passion, he must remain constant whether it be a little bit every day or longer intervals of work. This acknowledgement gave life to new ideas as he was able to clear his mental space and provide a clearer path, artistically and career wise.


The narrative behind his work is based on the desire to inspire others and provide a story to its viewers. To only scratch the surface, he addresses the significance of depression, mental health, and the basic desire to do more for the world. There is also a pervasive focus on a number of socio-political issues concerning police brutality and human trafficking. He makes a conscious effort to force his observers to narrow in and truly think about what they’re looking at. These intentions prevailed after Collins hosted a solo show this past February as it evoked strong emotionally charged responses.


He produced fifty-five pieces as apart of the one night February exhibition. As expected this process was not a short one, where these efforts expanded over a year or two. After finding a venue and producing the show completely independent, Collins was rewarded with great numbers shown in support.


Collins is a mover, someone with the drive to accomplish his ideas with swift motivation. There is clear determination in his actions and he consciously keeps his ideas outside the lane of ordinary. Up next for Collins will be the transition of his work into a gallery space and the development of his own work area. He also looks forward to the opening of his own studio, a space where people can have access to his work allowing him to maintain control of his own future. Regardless of the discipline, Mr Lem Collins is a creative force to be reckoned with.






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