J. Cole has emerged from just a youngin' from Fayettenam trying to escape to the Big Apple to pursue his dreams. He's a transcendent talent that has broken barriers through his lyrics and advocacy. His story is portrayed through my artwork.


Before I could even release this, I had to reflect on the journey of how it came to fruition. I started this piece after having about a 5 month hiatus of creating artwork for myself. This piece is something more than dear to me. As much as a J. Cole advocate I am, I was able to literally put myself into the world of growth for Cole. From the Come Up to now, I was able to analyze and breakdown his lyrics as his work played endlessly while I completed this piece. This was more than enjoyment, it was an experience of pure creation.

The story can relate to anyone going through seasons of change and growth. Our outlook on life changes, we mature, and we grow as people. And I feel that J. Cole embodies that perfectly through his lyrics and just how he carries himself.


Major inspiration came from the XXL Freshman covers. Their infamous cover included poses from various artists during that specific era. In addition, you can see the progress and stages of his career through his attire, hairstyle and jewelry.

In addition, the infamous Forest Hills Drive house shows how important his upbringing was in playing a part in his life. I had to portray that part of his growth through the artwork. From the transitioning of wearing jewelry to the growth of his hair, there are so much symbolism throughout the entire piece.

Can you point out all of the symbolism?