We caught up with Brandon Ingram at The Covenant House California where an 8′ x 22′ mural of the Los Angeles Lakers forward was being donated to the local youth homeless shelter, along with a renovated basketball court and lounge area. When the ‘Never Stop Dreaming’ mural was created back in March with the help of Ingram, iconic street artist Jonas Never and 150 Lakers fans as part of Delta Air Lines ‘Beyond The Court’ program, they weren’t quite sure where it was going to go.
A couple of months later, the mural has found it’s home. Ingram chats with Lakers Nation about what it was like to be part of such an inspirational day and when his love of art began. Plus, Ingram talks about his summer workouts, changing his shooting mechanics, adding strength, and goals for next season.
Q: We’re out here at Delta’s ‘Beyond The Court’ Program, where this awesome mural that you created along with 150 fans and Jonas Never, is being donated to the Covenant House California. How much involvement in this mural did you actually have?
Brandon Ingram: I had a few of the ideas in it. I actually painted a few of the things up there also, along with 150 fans and Jonas. Overall, Jonas helped me out with a lot of it, and he did a very good job painting it.
Q: You’re still fairly a young kid yourself, so to see this mural here at The Covenant House and to know kids are going to be looking at this in terms of inspiration, what does that mean to you?
Ingram: It’s inspiration for myself as I know it’s inspiration for those guys coming in here reading that mural and saying never stop dreaming. I think that sets the tone, they always keep that in the back of their head, whatever they want to do in life, they can go do it and reach new heights, each and every day.
Q: I just heard you say it’s an inspiration to yourself as well, I can imagine you probably have a lot of pride in knowing now that kids are going to be looking at your face on that wall everyday. Does it put kind of put this extra motivation in you to live up to that?
Ingram: Absolutely, I think coming from my home town, having aspirations that I’ve had over the years, it’s definitely going to keep me hungry, keep me humble, and keep doing things like this. Each and every day, I set a goal for myself, and I just want to reach new heights each and every day.
Q: When did the art passion begin, picking up the pencils, or whatever you liked to draw with?
Ingram: I remember when it was just nothing, just me in elementary school, just picking up a pencil, just drawing something, drawing my cartoon characters or anything that I had around me. It was something that I liked to do when I was bored or didn’t have anything to do.
Q: We saw you out at the facility earlier, so we know you’ve been getting those workouts in. How have the summer workouts been for you?
Ingram: They’ve been good, focusing on a lot of little things, a lot of mechanics, of course getting stronger. I think everything has been going great, been working a lot with Brian Keefe (the Lakers assistant coach), with the strength coach, and the progress that I’ve made over the last week has been pretty good.
Q: You said you’ve been working on mechanics, does that mean footwork, your shot, tell me a little bit about that specifically…
Ingram: Footwork, of course, but really details on my shot. I think this year, my percentage isn’t where I wanted it to be. I think a big factor was because of how long I am and because of my shot, so I think the big things are mechanics on my form, and I think the percentage will be better.
Q: You’re out here donating this mural, and you’re in a completely different spot now than you were last year around this time when you were coming in for draft workouts, not yet a Laker. What’s it like for you in the facility seeing guys working out, knowing that’s where you used to be?
Ingram: It’s exciting, just coming in every single day, seeing these guys work for a job, going so hard for what they want to do for most of their life, just to go in here every single day and put the work in that they’re going to be putting in one day is exciting.