To create artwork takes vision, time, and the essence of a creator. The creator embeds a fragment of their soul into each masterpiece. Through art, an artist displays their heart, story, truth, and vulnerability to the world. Throughout history, art has mutated, evolved, and broke through societal glass ceilings. One artist, actor, and model Garrett Martin is amongst a new age of individuals breaking a new artistic ceiling.
Every artist has a story and their story holds an origin. Garrett’s origin started in Baton Rouge, LA where he was born and raised. If you ask him, he will tell you he is from Saint Francisville, Louisiana. He grew up surrounded by small-town country vibes and graduated in a class of 130. Small towns tend to be stereotyped with closed-minded perspectives; Garrett is anything but closed-minded. Garrett grew up well-rounded with a typical childhood. His grade school days heavily involved friends, family, and playing sports year-round like cross country and soccer. He was also involved in band and played the saxophone for four years during high school. After graduation, Garrett focused his college career on Wildlife Ecology as a Biology Major. At the time, he dreamed of working as a lion conversationalist in Africa. Once Garrett realized his calling did not involve completing lab work, he emerged himself into exploring different career avenues. After some failed attempts, he finally discovered a fit that would lead him down his artistic path, Graphic Design. Garrett’s new major launched him into the realm of the arts where he soared in his computer graphic and art history courses.
Life is not always the straight and narrow path. Many times, life tends to throw people a curveball. One of Garrett’s curveballs directed him to Canyon City, Colorado where he became a rafting guide for two summers. During his first summer as a rafting guide in 2017, he engaged in researching modeling and acting. Appendicitis, a brutal and terrifying curveball, gave Garrett the clarity he needed to think about what he truly wanted in life, art. After deciding what he wanted, he decided to go after it. He came across a few businesses that led him to meet Ryan Colby at Colby Management.
The COVID-19 quarantine in 2020 allowed Garrett to experiment as the subject of his photography. Photography allowed him to face vulnerability and thus opened up more worlds for his art. Exploration led him to divulge in many diverse and versatile topics. Garrett’s art is raw; he creates work that is unhindered by the boundaries many others in society have to suffer through.
Looking at a photo of Garrett, one would never think that this tall, dark-haired, and handsome man grew up fairly shy. As he reflects on his life, he now questions whether it matters if he is so shy. Why does it matter if he speaks up or does what he wants? In a world full of billions of people there’s probably someone doing the same thing. He realizes that it is OK to question and explore. As a male model and artist, he is testing and pushing boundaries of societal norms such as sexuality and gender. As a creator of art, he sees a vision as a whole and searches for pieces that make it complete no matter the sexuality or gender of a subject. He envisions his art being seen for the beauty that it is and not defined by gender labels.
A few years ago, Garrett noticed an individual at the Met Gala wearing an eight-eyed makeup mask, long hair, and a tuxedo. The ensemble was interesting in the way the person resembled femininity with their long hair but also masculinity by wearing a tuxedo. The individual behind this fascinating art was Ezra Miller. Ezra Miller became a huge influence on Garrett. Garrett felt Ezra’s art encompassed a lot of pure, raw, unapologetic beauty. Ezra’s art has inspired Garett to open conversations about sexuality and gender in the art world. He is passionate about his art and plans to use his platform to uplift and support people within the LGBTQ+ community. Garrett hopes his artwork will encourage others to have open-minded conversations about gender, sexuality, and remove stereotypical labels from the artwork.
Currently, an exciting new world is unfolding right in front of Garrett's eyes. Talks with Ryan Colby about international opportunities are emerging in the next month or two. He will do all of this while keeping up with a busy school schedule and working on graphic design, photography, modeling, and acting projects. As a model, he enjoys working with a team to bring the creator's vision to life. He understands that when he is hired for a job, he knows fulfilling the vision is the top priority and he will do anything to help achieve it. He also enjoys playing the dual role of photographer and model. The industry can be hard but the support of Garrett’s team keeps him focused. The support of his family and friends keeps him grounded and motivates him to continue pursuing his creative path.
After talking with Garrett Martin and appreciating his art, I now see art in different ways. Do we as a society try to create understandings of artwork by labeling and putting subjects into past societal boxes? Can we experience art without biases and just appreciate and let it exist and admire the beauty without judgments? Art is the essence of the creators’ soul after all.