Who is Donrique?

I grew up in an extremely creative household and caught the Art bug from my Dad. On any given day, I could wake up to the fresh smell of oil paints from a Norman Rockwell tribute painting , the piercing wail of a Jethro Tull flute solo, or the passionate echoes of a monologue from Macbeth.

My house looked like an art gallery. Every wall, hallway and crevice was covered with paintings. It was like magic to me. I soaked up this eclectic household blend of art, music and theater like a sponge. I assumed the rest of the world was just like my house.

As soon as I could hold a pencil, I started drawing. It didn’t matter what it was, if it caught my eye, I would do my best to draw it free-hand and hone my chops. Spongebob characters, MAD magazine illustrations, old men with lots of wrinkles. If it looked cool, I needed to figure out how to draw it. I had a little black three-ring binder full of my drawings and I toted it around in my backpack proudly, readily available to show off to my friends at school and assert my position as “Best Drawer In The Class” at the start of each school year.

In 8th grade, I took a Photoshop class. I quickly realized that the things I was drawing on paper, I could draw on the computer. Miraculous! I scored a bootleg copy of Photoshop from my fellow 8th grade friend Vinny Dimino, and installed the program onto my home computer.

(This was still the 90’s, so I had to take turns using the computer with my brother and sister )

When it was my turn, I would spend hours experimenting with Photoshop. An entire world of creative and expressive possibilities was at my fingertips. The glow of the computer screen, the infinite color wheel, and CTRL+Z my mistakes at will was like magic. The only problem was, it was TOO powerful. I was paralyzed by the possibilities and had no idea what to design.

Until another fellow 8th grade friend of mine asked me, “You wanna design a logo for my band?”

Bingo.

My involvement in the music industry evolved into a passion for creating music of his own. I stopped wearing my Sean John & Roca Wear gear and started wearing band shirts and skinnys jeans from Hot Topic. Dad's old acoustic guitar and some YouTube videos Donrique taught himself to play in the style of guitarists Tommy Emmanuel and Andy Mckee. In 2012, he recorded an instrumental guitar album and sold it to his college-bound friends.

In 2012, I graduated from The University of The Arts with a degree in Fine Art. I formed an alternative hip-hop duo with high school friend Jonny Gorenc called The Pilot Kids. We released a music video crowdfunded on Indiegogp for our original song Million Bucks. The YouTube video garnered attention from Grammy award winning producer Tricky Stewart.