Combining, visual art, music & fashion, Brock Seals is able to express himself in a captive light. Seals’ artwork has been seen on several national recording artists such as Wiz Khalifa, Rae Sremmurd, and Chance the Rapper. Seals has even graced the sports industry on the NFL field with athletes like Janoris Jenkins and Stedman Bailey rocking his painted cleats. We caught up with the 1 of 1 artist to gain some insight to his career beginnings and artistic vision.
Q: Tell me about your background. How did you get into art, specifically painting?
A: Growing up I wasn’t doing much art, except for scribbles and doodles. It wasn’t until I came back home from doing fashion at Columbia College in Chicago, did I start doing actual art. The community college that I went to offered art and after doing it for to 2/3 years there; it developed into what it is now.
Q: Do you remember the exact moment you decided you were going to start taking art more seriously? What lured you in?
A: When I started to make stuff that I liked. I would always have a vision for things but when I was able to create stuff that I liked; people started to gravitate towards it. That’s when I knew I was going to be able to make a career off of what I was doing.
Q: Do you have a specific artistic style? If so, where do you draw your inspiration from?
A: I have an expressive artistic type of style and that mainly derives from my sense of fashion, which is full of color. It’s a mixture of what I’ve experienced, pop-culture and lots color. A lot of my content is inspired by pop-culture because that’s what motivates me as I create.
Q: How did you get a chance to cross paths with NFL teams, Chance the Rapper, Rae Sremmurd etc., as well as get them to wear some of your work?
A: With the NFL teams, I designed some cleats for Janoris Jenkins of the NY Giants and he really liked them, so he came to me every week for a new pair. After a while, the team caught on and I started getting orders from them as well. I got the opportunity to sit down with them and do an interview for their website; from there everything catapulted. Other teams like the Redskins, started to contact me and keep me in contact for designs. When it comes down to Chance and Rae Sremmurd, Chance was on tour with Metro in St. Louis and I was wearing a jersey I designed. I wanted to get my jersey originally to Metro, but it attracted Chance’s producer Nate Fox first. Once I got the jersey to Nate, Chance saw and wanted the jersey as well. I sent it to him at their last tour stop in Los Angeles; he wore it on stage and on his way home to Chicago. For Rae Sremmurd, Swae Lee contacted me on behalf of a painting I did via Instagram. I met up with him and sold him the painting. I kept his contact info and when Rae Sremmurd came to St. Louis for their tour, I sent them pictures of a jacket from my fashion line that I started with my girl Blair, Twvn Flame. When they saw the jacket, they loved it and asked me to bring it to them for the show. It was pretty cool.
Q: Do you think that learning about art in school is an outdated concept? Especially since we now have the ability to learn a lot by ourselves or at least have someone on the Internet quickly teach us without having to pay all of this money just to go to school to learn about it?
A: You aways can go online and learn something, but for me, I say it is the experience and network you get from learning it in school. Having teachers who actually care about your passion and allowing them to put you in positions to “check out this or check out that” or “meet this person,” is sometimes what you need. Some people need it; some people don’t. In my case, I got a network that I will keep in contact with for life; that’s why I am still in school.
Q: How has your hometown influenced you as an artist?
A: Growing up in the inner-city of St. Louis, there aren’t many options for you so, doing something different is a good feeling. Where I’m from there are a lot of creative artist whether designers or musicians. The culture, the style, and the talent of St. Louis is what influences me the most. I try to put the culture of my city back into what I do now, such as the painted shoes and etc. Everyone wants to be unique in areas like mine because it is not easy making it out. That reason alone fuels the fire to want to go harder and prove everyone else wrong. I always say if it was easy, then it wouldn’t be worth doing; the struggle makes you better.
Q: You are a musician as well, so do you see your career shifting closer to music?
A: Well, I’ve been doing music longer than painting. Lately, most of my notoriety has been coming from my art, but people still enjoy my music too. I want to promote both equally, giving 50/50 attention to my art and my music.
Q: In ten years, what would you hope to have accomplished? What do you want your legacy to be?
A: In ten years, I want to travel the world to show people my work as well as my story and open my own art gallery in St. Louis. I really just want to inspire that kid who was in my position and didn’t have the resources to follow their dreams. I want to help people find their purpose because some people are so deep in their circumstances that they can’t see their purpose.