I pay attention to the details and believe in the process. I am a big believer in never taking shortcuts.
“Art by Bankrupt” is a contemporary mixed-media artist originally from Central Florida. He is known for his grandiose, vibrant, geometric pieces often featuring twisted depictions of hip hop artists, fashion, and iconic pop culture figures, such as “Hyped Marilyn,” “Jordan,” “Gucci Ghost Trooper,” and “Zombie Krusty.” The innovative, self-taught artist develops his unique pieces on wood, typically standing at 2-5 feet tall, but he never reveals his actual process or the specific materials used.
The name “Bankrupt” was born of pure circumstance. The artist was working as a bartender, struggling to pay his monthly bills when he caught wind of a friend looking to fill the walls of his new home with artwork. In an all-or-nothing play, Art by Bankrupt took a gamble and spent his last $100 on art supplies to create a piece he hoped to sell to his friend–and he did. It was then the artist declared his name, Art by Bankrupt.
Art by Bankrupt released his first piece to th epublic in October 2017 and remains unrivaled. He has developed custom artwork for high-profile clients like professional boxer Floyd Mayweather, and rappers such as Kanye West, Future, Lil Uzi Vert, and Post Malone, to name a few. Art by Bankrupt’s pieces range $1,000 – $5,000 and are sold online as well as at his personal gallery at MVP Exotic Car Rental in Miami, FL. The artist keeps his fans guessing, leaving his creative process–and until recently, his identity–a mystery. Through his work, Art by Bankrupt endeavors to leave a positive impact on today’s culture and on the planet.
Where did the idea for your company come from?
I make art that I’d like to have myself, and that isn’t available in the current marketplace.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
I’m an early riser. I’m up by 6:30 am and jump out of bed ready to work before the rest of the world starts distracting me. I work mostly out of my house, so I can get right to work without a commute or delay. I tend to have a one-track mind when in the middle of something and I always have multiple projects going at once. That’s a recipe for me to pretty much work all day and all night.
How do you bring ideas to life?
I pay attention to trends and current events. In my niche, I need to react quickly and accurately. I research the subject and then add my secret sauce.
What’s one trend that excites you?
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
Waking up early and stick to a strict healthy lifestyle.
What advice would you give your younger self?
Get your money right.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
I am very opinionated, and I’m not sure where the start with this one. I call things how I see it and do not shy away from debating if I believe I am right. Stand for something, or fall for anything!
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
I am very disciplined in my life and my work. I pay attention to the details and believe in the process. I am a big believer in never taking shortcuts.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
I have approached art from a different angle than most. I pay attention to the music world that my manager lives in, and attack the art world in the same manner. I pay attention to how music artists grind and increase their fan base, and I pretty much capitalized off that model! You need to keep your feet on the streets.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
I have made a few bad choices regarding who I’ve done work with on face value and didn’t get the business right up front. I’ve learned to approach things from a different angle.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
Here’s my idea: How about you giving me your million dollar idea and I’ll run with it.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
I once spent the last $100 I owned on my first art piece trying to make something someone would buy. It was the best decision of my life.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive? How do you use it?
The most important piece of technology and software in it is my iPhone. I use that for everything!
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
“The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom” by Don Miguel Ruiz
What is your favorite quote?
The journey is the destination.
- Wake up early and stick to a strict healthy lifestyle.
- Get your money right.
- Stand for something, or fall for anything.
- The journey is the destination.
Mario Schulzke is the Founder of ideamensch, which he started a decade ago to learn from entrepreneurs and give them a platform for their ideas.