Hello everyone and I'm glad you can come on through! My name is Ralph A. Gilmore and welcome to my official website, Orange Moonwerks™ Studios. I’m an NYC native graphic designer, illustrator, comic book artist, writer, blogger, and entrepreneur.
This site intends to showcase my artistic and creative skills, while also bridging the gap to successful entrepreneurship and to inspire others to feed one another's senses. If you aspire to be something greater, it's up to you to see how far you can go.
I'm a self-described, modern day renaissance man and proud father of a 14-year old female futurist. I have an unhealthy obsession for art, design, movies, comic books, tech gadgets, video games, music, fashion, motorcycles and fitness. I'm also a die-hard fan of martial arts, boxing and basketball. I find all forms of art intriguing and I am thankful to blessed with the gift of artistry. My hope is that make a lifetime contribution to the creative community and as well as the world itself.
When I first started my business, there were definitely some humbling experiences. There were all kinds of challenges, little disappointments and setbacks that I could've used as an excuse to not start a business. Instead of using those negative factors as a hindrance, I used them as fuel to take the initiative to bring my dreams to life. The mantra or hashtag that I use for my business is called, "WERKSpired." This represents my belief in having no fear of following your passions and manifesting your dreams. To further elaborate on this, I wrote a heartfelt blog post in which I indicated why the graveyard is the richest place on the planet, because so many great ideas goes with us. You can check it out here when you have some time.
I was born and raised in Harlem, New York City. Any financial success you found during those times, you either had to become a hip hop artist, a pro basketball player, a drug dealer, a lawyer or an accountant. I had no-nonsense, but loving parents and I've seen the deadly follies of living the fast life, so that lifestyle was out of the question. I was pretty good in math, so a few overzealous high school teachers encouraged me into being an accountant. After working approximately 16 years in the field of accounting, while also going through a difficult period of my life, in which I had to adjust to becoming a single father, I was in search of some happiness that seems to have gone missing from my persona. Despite being a blessed and proud father of my beautiful daughter Jordan, there was still other aspects of my life that felt empty.
As I plodded through the corporate timeline year after year, I began to rediscover my passion for drawing and reading comic books. I remember as a kid, I would spend endless hours drawing comic book characters and reading my favorite comics such as X-Men, Batman, Spider-Man, the Avengers, Justice League and Daredevil. What reignited that fire within me was that one day, I was browsing around in a Barnes & Noble bookstore, and I came across a graphic novel that was published by DC Comics, which was called, "Batman Hush." To this day, it is one of the most visually stunning and intellectually written books I've ever put my hands on. It was illustrated by my favorite, inspirational comic book artist, Jim Lee, inked by Scott Williams, and written by Jeph Loeb. Thanks to Jim, the creative spark I was searching for was no longer missing and from that point on, I believe that this was only the beginning for me to leave my mark on this world.
Once I began to realize that I wasn't getting any "creative satisfaction" out of my current career, I set out to make my aspirations of being a successful artist, designer and entrepreneur a reality. I spent the majority of my 20's, working nonstop to help make other people rich; I dreaded the thought of working another twenty years doing the same thing. For almost an entire year, I researched and tinkered around with some ideas to use my creative abilities to supplement my income and eventually, to start a business.
Finally, a short while after getting laid off from my accounting job in 2009 of June, I started Moonwerks™ Studios. There were two main reasons I started Orange Moonwerks™ Studios; for one, I got tired of working in corporate America. Secondly, I hada burning desire to start a company from the ground up, which would be fueled by my creative imagination. Since childhood, I've always had artistic and creative talent, but as I got older, I didn't take it too seriously because there was very little encouragement in my community to earn a living as a professional artist. Here's a little backstory that I wrote on my blog, which explains the inspiration behind the name of my company; "How Grammy Award-Winning Artist Erykah Badu Influenced My Business Start-Up."
I constantly get asked about the advantages and disadvantages of being an entrepreneur. Make no mistake, it's definitely a challenge, and I look forward to meeting those new challenges that comes along with maintaining my business and coming up with new ideas to push the envelope even further. More than ever, I'm excited about the prospect of building my company and expanding it until it becomes globally renowned. My mission for Orange Moonwerks™ is to establish the company as both an art studio and an apparel brand. Through the use of graphic design, comic art, and illustration, I aim to bring something visually unique, innovating, and inspiring with every release I put forth.
I believe that we are all here for a divine purpose. No matter what we do, every person on Earth plays a central role in the history of the world… and normally, we don’t know it. Everybody has a creative potential and from the moment you can express this creative potential, you can start to change the world. Many of us have lots of ideas, but materializing them is key. I aim to live life on my own terms and to create a legacy that will inspire a multitude of people. Thank you everyone for your support and to those who believe in this as much as I do.