Illustrator Kay

Early Life

Khadijah Williams was born in Mannington, New Jersey on October 7, 1994 along with her twin brother, Elijah Williams. Her parents, Minister William D. and Sharon Williams raised Khadijah and her three siblings in a rather religious environment. She was raised in the small suburb of Penns Grove, New Jersey where everyone knew you and everyone knew each other. Education, self-determination, and faith are what the values Khadijah was brought up on as a young girl. She comes from a rather diverse town and background while valuing family, unity, and culture. Khadijah attended Penns Grove High School in which she was involved in various sports and other extra school curricular activities ranging from field hockey to theatre. After much consideration, Khadijah Williams is now attending the Rochester Institute of Technology where she plans to get a Bachelors degree in Illustration and minor in Music and Technology and plans to also become an Art Director of a design company as well as working with sound recording and music studio production within the music industry.Khadijah

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From a very young age, Khadijah has been interested in various kinds of art. Unfortunately, she did not receive any formal training until college, but growing up she experimented with simple mediums, such as graphite, acrylic and watercolor paints and soon utilized other materials as the years progressed. She now works mainly with digitally illustrating with Photoshop and doing design work with Adobe Softwares as well as traditional work.

In addition to the visual art side, Khadijah also was interested in the musical art. Being raised in a household with music playing on Sunday mornings and music during family cookouts, she was bound to end up in such an artist field. Beginning in fourth grade, she began playing the flute and piccolo where she soon learned to read sheet music. Soon after, she dove into teaching herself other instruments, such as drums, guitar, and piano in order to have a more diverse background in music. Khadijah also has worked with various artists from her hometown working with sound recording and different Digital Audio Workstations softwares and hopes to work with more artists within the upstate New York area.

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Creative Influences

Khadijah’s creative influences range from those who work graphically as well as illustrative, but she also has influences from those who audibly work. Dutch graphic artist, M.C. Escher, is an artist who works specifically with optical illusions and mathematical tessellations. His work appears to be crisp and architectural, which is still very different from many visual artists til this day. Also, other visual artists that utilize a great sense of movement throughout their work is another creative influence. Ernie Barnes is a prime example of this. His painting, “Sugar Shack”, was introduced in the famous Black sitcom, "Good Times", that depicts people dancing together. Not only does it show that, but it emphasizes black culture.

Other creative influences are those who are mainly intermingled into the music industry. Music artists from jazz, theatre, hip-hop, and post-modern music producers are great creative influences. John Coltrane and Sonny Rollins are two saxophonists who have made a great impact on music and its culture as a whole. Theatre ranging from shows such as In the Heights and Hairspray are just two influences that have impacted influences musically. Various artists within the hip-hop field have made their mark on history and the world as well where Khadijah takes many of her influence from, such as J Cole, Kendrick Lamar, Lauryn Hill, Erykah Badu, many musical influences passed down from family generations and many more.

Erykah Badu - Searchin' (Live)
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In her free time, Khadijah likes to play guitar, listen to vinyls, watch movies, and hang out with friends. She also enjoys visiting different cafe’s on Sundays.

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