Sage Guillory isn't just an artist. I had the pleasure of meeting him out in Atlanta, and from the moment I met him- I knew that he was not only a lovely person, but an engaging- deeply complex soul who really sees the world from an artistic perspective. That is something I admire, and as soon as I saw his work- I just knew I needed to know more about him, and that I had to share his beautiful work with our readers here at COZY. When I got back from my trip, we caught up with Sage. Check it out below.
COZY MAG: First of all for those who don't know, what’s your name and where are you from?
Sage: I'm known in this life as Sage Guillory, and I'm from Atlanta, Ga.
CM: Where would you say you draw the most influence from with your artwork?
Sage: I feel it's mix between Greek, Egyptian, and my own art styles. Also just the idea of progression and the fact that we can control anything in this physical world with our thoughts alone. The universe really transfers through me into my artwork. So I don't where all my influence comes from for sure, but that's definitely the gist of it.
CM: And how long have you been creating for?
Sage: Basically since I could move. I've been labeled as an artist by my family since around the age of 2.
CM: What first made you want to be an artist?
Sage: Nothing in particular. It's just who I am. This is the only thing I don't question. It's just an extension of me. It feels as natural as breathing. This is really the only thing that makes/keeps me happy.
CM: That's dope. It's not often people find their calling so young. It can take people years to figure out what they want to do... When did you start developing your style? Has it always been this way or did it take a while for you to find your own unique method?
Sage: I'll say it started around the age of 5. I would draw cartoons but I would always add too much detail. Like knuckles, bags under eyes, hair strands, lines in the hands, muscle/skeletal structure etc.
From there it just progressed to what it is today. It's finally come to a point to where I like my art. I didn't like my art until September of 2013.
CM: Wow. Talk me through your creative process.
Sage: My creative process is really simple. I don't look at anything to get inspired. I just don't think and let my soul take over. True art is just a stream of consciousness. You don't think you just do. Sometimes I'll draw or paint and look at it a while later and not even remember doing most of it. Like I've never seen it before.
If I'm doing a commissioned piece with a specific idea. I'll think on it. Go over the idea over and over in my head. Then I'll tackle it.
CM: What other present day artists inspire you?
Sage: I'm not inspired by any present day visual artists. I've always been inspired by the ones who have come before me, i.e., Salvador Dali, Alphonse Mucha, Pablo Picasso. The closest I could come to present day is Keith Haring, Jean Michel Basquiat. I don't really do a lot of research on the current art world.
CM: There is a lot of detail in your work, which is why we love it so much! How much of a perfectionist are you when it comes to your art?
Sage: I'm a huge perfectionist. But I don't return to my artwork. After I've finished a piece. I feel like that's what it's supposed to look like and I won't change it. If I don't add anything after 20-30 minutes on a smaller piece or 1-2 days on a bigger one, It's done. I used to keep adding more and more detail until I ruined the artwork. The urge is still there, but now I know when to stop.
CM: Tell me about the art scene in Atlanta. How do you think it compares to the rest of the world?
Sage: I think it's cool. Like I said, I don't really do much research into the current art scene like I should, but what I do know is there's a respect that artists in Atlanta have for each other. We fuck with each other and there's not much drama. In comparison to the rest of the world I feel like we're holding our own.
The art scene here is relatively new to the world. We're just now getting global recognition. But the way I see it, in the coming years Atlanta will become a Mecca for arts of all kind. We're still evolving. It's the Atlanta Renaissance.
CM: Are there any other artists out there at the moment which you think will do really well?
Sage: Yeah, COMMAND, Ron Shaw, Jeh-Mahk, Cheikh, Juma, and Christian Nolan Jones
CM: Where do you see your art taking you in the future?
Sage: I see my art propelling me higher. But by getting that big I'll be an influential figure of this generation. All I really want to do is help people be great and stop letting these social constructs box us in.
"I'll be in history books." - Sage Guillory.
Words by Neela (@foxyneela)
All Artwork by Sage Guillory