“A winner is someone who recognizes his God-given talents, works his tail off to develop them into skills, and uses these skills to accomplish his goals.”- Larry Bird
Gavin C. Cotton, known as NAMELESS, is a man who recognized his many talents and perfected them into his own craft. Last week I got the chance to interview the Flint, Michigan native. Specializing in comic sketches, still, figure, freestyle drawings, logos, shading and cross hatching, NAMELESS has been drawing since the age of 2 years old. Inspired by his cousin, one of his first sketches was a flower shop for his mom, you know the cliché things most of us have doodled as kids, but it wasn’t until 7th grade that he realized that he possessed something special. Self-taught and trained, NAMELESS gives his favorite supplies to use which include “graphite or mechanical pencils, sharpie markers, and charcoal.”
When asked if he sells any of his work, NAMELESS responds, “I sell work for those who want physical artwork portraits from me. Hobby-wise, on a bored day…if I’m not working on beats, I’ll sketch my followers on Instagram.”
Here are a few of my favorite sketches. Even I was also cool enough to make the list!
As an artist, NAMELESS also is a graphic designer. As a student at University of Houston- Downtown “I was one of the go-to guys whenever a promoter needed a flyer or business card design,” he elaborates. He specializes in vector designs, flyer designs, logos, shirt designs and banners. When asked about his most prized design he brags, “…would have to be my Kanye West vector design.”
I asked him if he could design an album art for any music artist, who would it be, he names “J. Dilla, Black Milk, Flying Lotus and Erykah Badu because other than their music, they also appreciate art. All of their albums have outstanding artwork. They understand that the artwork is the FIRST thing a customer looks at.”
NAMELESS also has another love, producing music. Member of the label, “Street Corner Music” imprinted by DJ House Shoes last November, he is inspired by “real hip-hop,” and a proud 80’s baby. “I appreciate the GOLDEN ERA days: Wu-Tang Clan, A Tribe Called Quest, Pharcyde, Souls of Mischief, Nas, Jay-Z and KRS-ONE…” just to name a few from his list. Starting off as the kid “beating on the lunch tables,” NAMELESS got serious into making beats in 2002. Playing around on his friend’s beat machine, he taught himself how to create his own music. He shares, “I still believe that you can only learn how to make music by trial and error.” With a sold out vinyl album titled: “The Gift: Vol.1 –NAMELESS” under his belt, he describes his style as “electric, soul with a real gritty 90’s hip-hop sound.” Composing his creations with a Native Instruments Maschine and a Serato Novation Twitch, NAMELESS seems to be a busy man. Here is one of his latest beats, “Mndsgn + NAMELESS –Eggs [Hard2Tell RMX.]
NAMELESS, husband and father, often uses his family as his muse, “I sketch my family all of the time. I recently sketched my wife for her birthday and my son with markers (his first time using markers while sketching.)” “My son looks up to me and he always find me in the cave making beats or sketching, he always works on drawings and he’s pretty much hip to recent music.” It sounds like we can expect a little NAMELESS in the future.
Currently residing in Tallahassee, Florida you can view NAMELESS’s work below
For art: http://namelessconcepts.com
For music: http://nameless.bandcamp.com