Hailing from New York State, digital artist and illustrator Manzel Bowman creates vibrant digital images that instantly capture the eyes of viewers. Composed of many layers with intricate details that cannot be seen at a quick glance, Bowman's futuristic artwork calls for people's attention. Most of Bowman's artwork incorporates the images of gold, gems, diamonds, Egyptian gods and African people to expose/feature some of the different elements in his African culture's past and present that are rarely seen in American/Western culture. We caught up with Bowman to ask him about his creative thought process, favorite design and inspirations.
TH: Can you tell us a bit about yourself and the type of artwork you create?
MB: My name is Manzel Bowman and I like to create. I'm from Amityville, New York and I predominately work from a digital medium. Though I can work from many different mediums, I feel there's a rise in demand for digital artwork, which forces my focus to my computer.
TH: What inspires your designs?
MB: My designs are inspired by everything from nature to the ineffable. I like to create imagery that captures the essence of my culture while providing an interstellar or futurist narrative.
TH: Do you have a favorite design that you’ve created?
MB: I can't say that I truly have a favorite piece. I create new works everyday so my favorite piece is usually what I'm working on at the moment. I like to think that I haven't seen my greatest work yet because I'm constantly growing.
TH: What is your creative process like?
MB: Typically I work at night while the world sleeps. I find a comfort in dark, quite environments where I find myself open to think better. The creative process depends on the piece. Sometimes I find the reference photos that I instantly have a vision for, while other pieces I sit on, and slowly chip away at them for a while.
TH: What do you want people to get out of your artwork?
MB: I simply want people to "feel" when they see my work. I'd like to think that when you look at my work that it grabs your attention forcing you to stare at it. I want people to have their own interpretations of my work, meaning something different to each person.
TH: Is there a deeper meaning in the recurring images of African people in your artwork?
MB: The reoccurring theme of African people is found in my artwork to paint a narrative that is seldom seen in American culture. I feel that it is my personal duty to create these pieces to fill a void in our culture. I want to remind people of African descent that we have our own religion, beliefs, and deities that have been removed from us over the span of history. African traditions are rich in color and creativity, and I simply want to capture a piece of it in each piece.