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Meet Derek Wilson

Today we’d like to introduce you to Derek Wilson.

Derek, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
It’s a long story; as it must be for many. I’ve been an artist since I can remember. I was that kid in elementary school that drew everything for everyone. I’m still that kid. Fast-Forward. Highschool. -An AP Art Exam score lands me a scholarship to MDCC.

From that point on, I’m entrenched in being an artist as well as an art educator; a decision I made in the same AP art class. Soon after I graduate from Florida International University (class of 95) with a BFA in sculpture and begin teaching art almost immediately.

Twenty-two years later, I’m still teaching art, and I LOVE IT! I would say this has a direct impact on my current success. Why? -My classroom is my studio. I paint and create art right in front of my students; modeling what it takes to be a working artist in the 21st century.

With that said, it was my wife who inspired me after a year-long-case of artist-block to begin painting in my classroom. I listened and have been painting in Studio 118 for almost a decade.

I also attribute much of my recent success as an artist to my first and favorite childhood memory: watching Speed Racer cartoons. The iconic show has a universal appeal and popularity that continues to astonish me.

The decision to go in this direction was inspired by my mother’s passing fourteen years ago, this March. Eager to tell her story after years of grieving. I quickly came to the conclusion, that I needed to pay tribute to her love and vitality with an image that would evoke happiness, not sorrow. She would not have it any other way.

So, after five years of Speed Racers. The work continues to sell, continues to bring joy to so many and most importantly continues to allow me to keep my mother alive through my art. We’ll stop here… but there is more!

Has it been a smooth road?
Finding balance. Balancing family, the “day job” with the need to feed the creative beast within.

We’d love to hear more about what you do.
I am an artist, art teacher, and advocate for the arts. I believe my constant advocacy for the local art scene and charities, sets me apart from my peers. Most recently, working with Love Hope; assisting and co-producing a live art event and fundraiser for Voices for Children, is by-far some of my best work.

What have been some of the most important lessons you’ve learned over the course of your career?
I would adopt the business mentality much sooner. Exposure doesn’t pay the bills.

Contact Info:

  • Website:
  • Phone: 7863824601
  • Email:
  • Instagram: @mrwilsonart
  • Facebook: Derek Wilson

Getting in touch: VoyageMIA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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