Category Archives: Cafe

1001 Black Men #926


My job has become a bit hectic in recent weeks, and so I’ve had to sneak in my art whenever I’ve had a spare moment. I’ve had to make the most of each of spare hour or two, and so my afternoon at the Hive resulted in several new drawings for this series. This dapper business man with the impeccably trimmed beard sat across from us long enough for me to complete this portrait.

Ajuan Mance



1001 Black Men #923


I recently did an art day with my friend Eddie. We found a god seat at a local cafe, pulled out our sketchbooks, and started drawing. We didn’t stop until a few hours and, in my case, several portraits later. We sat at the big shared table right inside the front window, and I drew the Black men who came in, as well as the Black men who passed by.

Shout out to Hive: The Place to Bee. This locally-owned cafe is a relatively new addition to the MacArthur/Fruitvale area, but it’s got got true Laurel-Dimond district flavor. There’s ample seating, and a varied menu of coffees and teas, as well as some breakfast and lunch items.

Ajuan Mance

1001 Black Men #910


I was recently in Austin, Texas for an academic conference. While there, I ate buffalo wings at four sports-themed restaurants. At Champions, a sports bar-restaurant located in one of the downtown hotels, I was seated at the bar, and this elderly sports fan was seated across from me. The look on his face that you see in this drawing was the same look he had on his face during the entire time I was at the restaurant. At first, I thought he was frowning at me, and then I thought he was frowning at his food. Then I thought he was frowning at me again. The only time his faced seemed to crack even the slightest smile was when his food arrived. He probably would have smiled more if he’d ordered chicken wings. They were really pretty good.

Ajuan Mance

1001 Black Men #909


I always notice a gentleman in a scarf. The man in this drawing was waiting in line at my favorite coffee shop. The haughty expression on this man’s face appeared to reflect his judgement of the people around him, the arrangement of the space, or both. Chances are, though, that he was simply lost in his own thoughts, with little attention to the rest of us or to the setting’s decor.

Ajuan Mance

1001 Black Men #835


I first noticed the man in this picture at Zocalo cafe in San Leandro. Part of the reason he caught my attention is because I’d been reading a lot about Black dandies and preppies, and he reminded me of the men in The Black Ivy, that amazing photo gallery at A few days later, I spotted him a second time, in downtown Oakland. I’d never seen this man anywhere before, and all of a sudden we were crossing paths twice in one week. If the universe was telling me to make him one of my 1001 Black Men, then who was I to say no.

Ajuan Mance