This Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, we published "BLKBND," on the Rise of the Urban Creative, framed by the self-crafted BLK male identity, and the BND of historical brotherhood. See the full editorial here.
Then we asked each BLKBND share a piece of himself.
Who are you?
Mamady Condé, Syracuse, New York.
What words do you live by?
Never underestimate the heart of a champion.
Describe yourself, today, in 3 words.
Balanced, Kind, Ruthless.
Describe the man you aspire to be, 3 words.
Loving, Giving, Humble.
What do you fear?
I fear not doing what makes me happy.
What are you proud of?
I’m proud of being a risk taker and pursuing my dreams no matter the struggles.
What are you searching for?
I'm not searching for anything in particular. I just enjoy creating worlds for people, to help them escape.
How will you find it?
By learning, creating more, and continuing to find inspiration around me.
Who do you want to become? What do you want to accomplish?
I hope to make something that is unfathomable and so inspirational that it helps get people through tough times, or helps them forget their problems for even just a moment. It would be great to have a person say to me someday, 'I didn’t give up because of you.'
What have you created in yourself, for yourself, and of yourself, to put forth in pursuit of your creative goals?
I am my own inspiration at times because my passion is so strong, I constantly remind myself I do this because it makes me feel good. I don’t even know how to explain it. It just feels right.
What's a pivotal moment or opportunity—whether existential or circumstantial—that's brought you to where you are today, as a man and a creative?
The moment that changed me was when I realized I’ll never stop learning—to always humble yourself. When you do that, the world opens up.
As a BLK male, how have you crafted the persona that you present to the world? Speak to your style philosophy. What does it mean to you?
I find things in the world that inspire me, and I combine them into a melting pot, shaving away what I don’t like. In the mix of that my upbringing you will find me the anomaly.
The BLK BND is an agent of life. What code of behavior and knowledge does he/do you use to navigate the world as an agent of the black male identity?
You just have to live and not put too much thought into it.
BLK BND also signifies a brotherhood, the bond between men who understand where they come from, and the mindful positioning of self to create success for themselves. How does that come into play in your life? What signifies success to you?
If you never give up, there is no way you will not become successful and success is so one-sided, who can really say? All I know is for me, success is being loved and admired for being yourself.