I’ve done projects with The Boys and Girls Club and Big Brothers Big Sisters. A lot of these projects come from the need to help out kids to find their passion through the arts. With that there really are no limits. Coming from the islands, people are in a mindset to stay on the islands and I want to get people inspired to leave because there’s so much to see.
I want to help the youth find what they want to do and pursue it. The murals I’ve helped to create are a reminder for that. There’s one that’s two stories high and I put in a lot of work and heart to help make that happen. I feel like if you put in heart, you can make that impact, with anything you do.
With that project, we were also in the newspaper, which was really cool. We got sponsored with the paint and supplies, and Marriott even sponsored us for the project. In order to make it happen you have to bring people together and have them understand your purpose. It was kind of difficult because I was a lot younger and my mindset was different. I had a difficulty talking to people but it got me out of my comfort zone and we made it happen. We got covered on the news and they ended up getting our story!
Since then, everything has happened so fast and I had the opportunity to work with so many great people, brands, and communities. My dream job would be working with youth and traveling doing what I love. And I know it’s not impossible to do it.
We did a project where the kids got to get involved and paint the mural. We had them write positive messages to have them part of the project so when they go back to school they would get inspired by it and have something to look forward to. I’ve been doing a lot of research as to how we can build change and it’s about starting with the youth. It’s helping them understand that we can implement the arts especially through project-based learning. I’ve learned a lot of resilience through this process of how to get sponsors, and making these projects a reality. I never really learned how to draw until 2013. I used to draw for fun but never did it in the way I do now.
If you put in work, you can get to where you want to be. It’s only been three years and I’ve made so much progress and gotten so far into my craft. I just want to show people that if you put heart in what you do and work really hard, you can get really far. It doesn’t matter what age you are because it’s never too late, just as long as you start somewhere. With anything, especially school and your work ethic, what you put into it is what you’ll get out of it.
Even being around people who are like-minded helps because they will suggest books to read, TED talks, and provide that feedback you need. It’s hard for me to talk about this and share it because it’s kind of weird. In my mind, I know I’ve accomplished so much, but it doesn’t feel that way because I’m just doing what I love. I don’t want to limit myself and label myself as a certain type of artist because you can truly do whatever you put your mind to. I’ve just experimented in trying new things, read a lot of books, and just started to rethink a lot of things.
After I had a concussion from playing soccer, I was a midfielder, so I couldn’t do anything. So I would turn to art to pass the time. I had a mentor when I was 15, and I was very young so when I would try to execute certain things it wouldn’t go so well. It wasn’t until I learned how to think instead of what to think that I really got into creating.
I just want to go back home to Hawaii and Kauai to share what I’ve learned and implement those positive vibes. I want to show the youth to really live their lives in a positive way and impact change in that way, even if it’s just a little bit. It takes a village to raise a child. So if I could support the kids back home, just by having a mural on a wall as a reminder, that’s worth it.
I want to start using my connections to continue networking and collaborating more and just connect people I know here with people back home. I always wished I had someone to help me with guidance, and even though I have a mentor he’s out in Oahu and he’s still doing his own thing, so the dynamic is different as far as working together to make something happen. So I want to be able to be that support to people. And it’s great because I get to see all of these amazing groups grow like with you and with Soulection. It’s really cool.
I’m also on the organizer side of things so I end up appreciating that side of it as well and all of the people who support you from the beginning of an idea. I’m really starting to understand that it helps if there are people behind you and support you because it helps keep you accountable. I wouldn’t be able to do this on my own if I didn’t have anyone behind me. We work so hard for ourselves but when we have that support of people who want to see us grow as a person and an artist, it really helps. I wouldn’t be hustling and grinding right now if it weren’t for that community and having my mentor helping wanting to see me grow. It’s still difficult because I’m still learning and it’s a process, but it’s been a great journey so far.
Trysen is an incredibly talented artist who has reminded us that it’s never too late to follow your dreams if you put heart and hustle to your craft. We had the pleasure of connecting with him last year and have since seen him flourish in his creative career with collaborations with local communities, big brands, and even us! We are so excited to partner with him for an upcoming event and something very special for Coffee & Convos.
He spoke a lot about taking risks, putting yourself out there, and simply trying. He even joked about how his name is Trysen and the word “try” is in his name so that’s what he’s been doing even if it wasn’t intentional to be named that. He has a passion for helping the youth and he’s hoping to continue to make those strides in making a difference in schools in Hawaii to inspire that anything is possible. We are so excited to see where he ends up next, and we’re sure we’ll see more of his work on walls all over the world!
Believe in Your Dreams Mural: http://tkaytwo.co/believe-in-your-dreams/
The Angier Way Mural Project: http://tkaytwo.co/angier-elementary-mural-project/
*Photos provided by Trysen