Je ne sais quoi. Think of it like the gravitational pull of personality. Although not a trait of the masses, it’s possessed by quite a few people – especially artists. But then again, most artists aren’t as effusive and genuine as Damien Martin. Over the past couple of years the photographer and Dallas native has become a staple of Dallas’ fashion scene. With that induction into the more finely-stitched fabric of society, lots of people pitch —read: throw— ideas at him; reality TV shows, ad campaigns, and fashion shows to name a few. But none of those things provided him with a built in system to assist other artists. In this world of puckered lipped selfies and Instagram modeling, Mr. Martin and The Fashion Art Network look to restore a bit of class and order to art while building a community of creatives.
As he prepares to open the door for DFW’s first official hub for professional yet evocative content, we spoke to the #FAN co-founder about origins, motivation, and whether or not roadblocks were an option. Unrepentant, stylish, and gifted, the hometown wunderkind allowed us a sneak peek behind the curtain of his latest creation.
Imagine not necessarily a master plan but a plan by a master.
When I was starting out as a young artist creating artwork was fun. It had no stipulations, rules, or timelines; it was truly just fun. Once I made the leap to being a professional artist, the whole game changed; deadlines were introduced, marketing and advertising became detrimental and having to create pieces that cater to a specific client were the new norm. All of which completely go against the artists spirit.
The reason I smile is because the turbulence of turning art into a profession from a hobby is over. Many artists do not make it through this pivotal transition because for them it’s time sensitive. The need to generate income supersedes the love of art creation. Artists are artists not master marketers, supreme advertisers, savvy businessmen, accountants, PR specialists, or order taking receptionists. Any one of those additional facets will ultimately take away from the time you should be creating art. So I smile because The Fashion Art Network does specialize in all of the facets so artists can remain artists and we can help them handle the rest.
To create art just takes imagination. To create great or captivating art takes vision and the skill to take an idea from conceptual to reality.
I was always more interested in pushing myself to achieve goals. I was never one that could stay focused without a goal attached. I’ve been an artist all my life but the inspiration, drive, and creativity came from setting goals.
What I learned from my father was a humbleness far beyond any that I’ve experienced even in my adult life. He instilled in me that it’s a person’s work ethic and perseverance that makes them who they are. So with the combination of hard work, humility, and focus I could truly get what I want out of life.
All walls are either illusions or deterrents. It’s up to the individual that perceives them to decide.
People see me as reserved even though I have an eternal fire in my soul to become better with every experience or encounter in my life. Doing the same thing is rarely an option for me as it doesn’t bring the same fulfillment that pushing myself to new heights does.
There’s real wisdom in understanding. When you can understand a person or client it yields a far better result from the advice you give to the services you can recommend and provide. It also leads to a better relationship and that’s what my business is based on.
Join Damien and his team at on May 17th at 7pm for the grand opening of The Fashion Art Network located at 3001 Quebec St. Suite 102, Dallas, Texas 75247.
RSVP at firstname.lastname@example.org