Raymond B. Cody, a native and resident of Atlanta, Georgia, was born in 1954. Considered by many a virtuoso, his passion and skill in the arts was quite evident throughout his elementary school years. As early as 1969, he began to develop his own personal style of fine arts and illustrations. While in the tenth grade, Raymond was selected to attend a special correspondence course at the Famous Artist School under the tutelage of such instructors as Norman Rockwell. It was at this time that he began his free-lance art career.
While formally studying architectural engineering and design at the Southern Technical Institute (formerly a division of Georgia Institute for Technology), he also studied illustrative techniques from various professional American illustrators. His work with professional artists led to the opportunity to work as an illustrator and draftsman for United Parcel Service.
In 1982, he was featured on a cable network television talk show as a celebrated black artist. In 1983, he and his wife Cynthia established CODY’S FINE ARTS AND ILLUSTRATIONS, a multifaceted business of publishing, distributing, collecting, interior design and framing. In 1994, Raymond was commissioned by The Alliance of Black Telecommunications Employees, Inc. to depict the plight of Black Americans in an oil painting entitled “THE STRUGGLE.” Raymond truly captured the “SPIRIT OF LEGENDS” and the theme was adopted by BellSouth for its 1996 Black History calendar. His explosive painting highlighted African-American Olympic and Paralympic medalists in Georgia. This creation was used for both the calendar’s cover and poster prints which were distributed nationally to schools and businesses throughout the country.
His work can also be found in many countries throughout the world including Canada, France, Germany, Saudi Arabia, and Belgium. This artist paints and illustrates what he dreams, feels, knows, loves, and lives. His depictions of dance and music depict action and deep expression which is evident in his masterpiece “REVELATIONS,” in the strength of his piece “BIRMINGHAM BLUES” and the spirit as seen in such works as “ROCK-A-MY-SOUL” and “RIBBONS.”
His works have been exhibited at such venues as the Richard Russell Federal Building, Stillman College, Atlanta University, The Black Family Reunion Exhibition, The National Black Arts Festival, and the Robert Ferst Center for the Arts at Georgia Institute of Technology and in galleries throughout the country. Raymond has been featured at numerous one man shows. His art can be seen in the model home of one of John Wieland’s premiere subdivisions, Regency Park, located in an exclusive section of Southwest Atlanta. Perhaps one of the greatest accomplishments he has had as an artist and illustrator was the fact that his work was chosen to be displayed on the cover of the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).
In late 2001, Ballethnic Dance Company named Raymond B. Cody as their official artist. Since accepting this role, Cody has developed numerous original pieces that capture the essence of Ballethinic Dance Company’s signature piece, The Leopard Tale, and illustrate their festive dance piece entitled, “Urban Nutcracker”.
Currently, Cody travels to many islands to gain inspiration on new original works. Recently, he has traveled to Barbados, St. Maarten, St. Lucia, Bermuda, Aruba, Jamaica, Bahamas, and the Cayman Islands. Out of each of these journeys came new works that simply dazzle the onlooker.
When Raymond B. Cody is not directly involved with developing new works or participating in exhibits, he likes to spend his time mentoring students who are pursuing an art career. He has served as a judge for numerous art competitions including the NAACP ACT-SO competition. He is invited to display his art and lecture at numerous elementary, middle, high schools, and universities.
CODY’S FINE ARTS & ILLUSTRATIONS
Cody’s Fine Arts & Illustrations was founded in 1983. The founders, Raymond and Cynthia Cody, established the company with the aim of presenting a positive image of African-Americans through artistic expression. Cody’s Fine Arts has been successful in introducing up and coming artists and educating the entire community about fine arts. The primary artist that is featured under the company, Cody’s Fine Arts and Illustrations, is that of Raymond B. Cody. Early in his career, he focused his attention on the development of illustrations. As time progressed, he began to flourish as a fine artist. The transition that he experienced in his own work became the inspiration for the name Cody’s Fine Arts and Illustrations.