Today we’d like to introduce you to Omar Martinez.
So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
Art has always been around me. From my family, to my interests, to the way I perceive the world. It all started with Saturday morning cartoons. As a kid I used to love watching cartoons and I would imagine these characters in my head doing wacky things that I found funny. Kind of like a movie theater showing a featured film but I was the only audience member. My imagination would just run wild. Little did my parents know that all these little antics would be the greatest influence that inspired me to do what I do now.
My biggest creative influence as a kid was my uncle Steve Martinez. He took care of my brother and I for a good portion of our childhood and during that time he would always encourage us to draw and just create in general. I would see him painting on walls, bring to life these awesome illustrations, and just always creating something amazing. I remember thinking I wanted to be just like him when I grew up. Now I get the chance to work beside him and it’s really awesome. To this day he is my greatest critic and my greatest inspiration.
Growing up, I realized that my interests varied. I was not only interested in and enjoyed creating visual art but music as well. But they sort of always ran parallel to each other. Music is very recreational for me. I don’t feel like I’m trying to fit in a box or meet people’s expectations. It’s all about just doing what I want and what I feel.
I had the privilege of going to Otis College of Art and Design after high school. Unfortunately, I had to drop out my Sophomore year due to personal reasons. However, I am grateful for the time spent there which was very impactful in my life. I learned the fundamentals of drawing, got a better sense of what it’s like to be in the world of art, and meet some pretty great people along the way. Overall, Otis gave me a strong foundation on how to be an artist and how to adapt in the art world as its always changing and moving forward.
Currently, I spend my days working for the Long Beach Public Library System and Phantom Design. On my spare time, I continue to create both visually and musically. My first solo show, titled “The Cats Within,” ran from December 2017 to February 2018 at Black Ring Coffee in Long Beach.
This year has started off pretty strong and I’m excited to see what the future has in store for me.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It has not been a smooth road. There are so many variables that have come into play over the past years. After I dropped out of college, I stopped creating. One of the biggest hurdles to overcome was the feeling that everything around me was telling me not to continue doing what I loved. It became about making money to survive, helping my family, and relaxing whenever I got the chance. So, creating was the last thing on my mind. To top it off I didn’t believe in myself. I just didn’t have the confidence in myself and to this day that is still something I struggle with. I wasted a lot of time turning my back to what I love. Thank God I’ve been blessed with a family that never stopped believing in me, supporting me, and never stopped pushing me to do my best. Despite the obstacles I faced and continue to challenge me; I wouldn’t change it for the world.
Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about The Bakery – what should we know?
I started the creative group “The Bakery” with my uncle Steve Martinez and brother Ricardo Martinez, aka Zxmbiac. It’s a creative collective. We all bring something different to the table. My brother is a mixed media designer and a creative consultant. My uncle is a painter, muralist, and graphic designer. I am a beatmaker, illustrator, and graphic designer. Our goal is to create dope art as a team and as individuals. Our diverse talents allow us to tap into multiple creative outlooks. Although, we may specialize in one field we’re not limited to staying within it. I myself have my hand in multiple projects that involve murals, music, and illustrating. It makes for a very diverse creative experience. The best part of it all is that we’re family.
Is there a characteristic or quality that you feel is essential to success?
Success comes in different forms. For me, success is happiness. I love what I do and refuse to stay where I’m at. I want to be challenged. Without challenge there’s no growth; without growth there’s no success. I want to create and love what I create.
- Address: Long Beach
- Website: thexbakery.com
- Phone: 323.423.8107
- Email: thebakeryxmusic@gmail
- Instagram: thexbakery
- Facebook: thexbakery
- Twitter: thexbakery