Black Pop w/ Artist Xavier Payne Pt.2

Yesterday we introduced you to artist Xavier Payne. We had such a great time getting to know this young man that broke his interview up in two parts. Here’s where the story picks up…

In A 90’s Kind of World… | Living Single | Xavier Payne

Artist: Xavier Payne

Residence: Nashville Tennessee

Influences: Kara Walker, Aaron Douglas, Frank Frazetta, Al Hirschfeld, Keith Haring etc..etcetc

(questions continued)

10. My favorite Xpayne joint is the House Party one. You even managed to make me hear the click of Kid and Plays shoes, it’s so spot on. What image have you recreated that seems to garner the most attention from folks?
I guess that’s the one, and Shorty By Nature, the Martin illo. People know those moments like they know any moment in their own life. I think that’s dope.

Self Portrait | Xavier Payne

11. Do you feel like anonymity is important or just an easier way to accomplish the work without distractions?
It has its pros and cons though it’s not something I planned on. I’m just not super into taking photos, I’m trying to get out of that.
12. Favorite TV Show growing up/ Now?
Definitely Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Raphael was that dude to me, ha ha! Now? I don’t watch TV so much. When I do, it’s Family Guy, Regular Show, and other animated shows.

13. What/who are some of your direct influences when it comes to the work?
Aaron Douglas. Kara Walker. Al Hirschfeld. Akira Toriyama. Jules Olitski. Kehinde Wiley. They are my strongest influences for different reasons, and I became aware of each at different stages in my life.

14. Favorite Member of Wu-Tang Clan
Tough… RZA.


15. Is there anyone out there that you’d like to work with but might be a little intimidated by?
One of my dreams is to do an OutKast/Big Boi/Dre Album cover. They are my hero’s, individually and collectively. Big Boi said my work was, and I quote, “Dopeness!” That made my week, lol. I love Issa Rae…like for real. I want to do a portrait of her. I always thought it would be awesome to incorporate some illos for Awkward Black Girl, or anything else she comes up with. I’m not sure if I would be intimidated by them, maybe a little nervous though. But that’s why I love those guys, I think it would just be cool to be around them, too.

Two Dope Boys in a Cadillac | Atliens | Xavier Payne
Big Boi coined this one DOPENESS.

Southernplayalistic | Xavier Payne

16. Five Things in your XPayne Survival Kit.
1. Pencil and Pad.
2. IPod or something that plays music.
3. Green Tea
4. Space Ship
5. Magic Lamp

17. Any upcoming projects, shows etc…  you‘d like to share with the readers?
Well, I’m in school, and I’ll be in a senior show in December. I’m excited about that because I know that everything I’ve learned up to this point will go into this. I’ve been charging up like Mega-Man over here. I’m excited about the near future!

18. How can people contact you for prints and or commission work?

19. Can we look forward to rockin Xpayne tee-shirts in the future or is that just an HBG dream?

YES! I’m talking to some T Shirt Printers now so stay tuned.

20. Any final comments or shouts you’d like to give?

Yeah! Thank you HBG, and thank you to anyone who hit that follow button on your phone/screen/mind, whatever. In the end I am a student of passion. I will always give you art. I will always give you me. Peace.






one day


Devoya Mayo is Co-Creator of The Happy Black Girl

Get To Know An HBG is her favorite column to write.

You can contact her directly at





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