MACON, Ga. — A Warner Robins couple looked around their huge gym and saw a lot of empty walls, so they took a leap of faith and flew a unique artist in all the way from South Korea.
Emiliya Radford and her husband, Josh Radford, spent months looking for a graffiti artist to spray paint their gym, Southpaw Fitness.
After looking online, they got a response from a man in South Korea. They flew him to Georgia to get the job done and they are more than happy with the results.
JongBae Lee has been an artist for more than 15 years. He says it's always been his dream to share his art internationally. That's exactly what he got to do at the Southpaw Fitness gym in Warner Robins.
Co-owner Emiliya Radford and her husband got in contact with Lee in a graffiti artist group online.
"So we booked the tickets and sponsored the trip, and next thing you know, everyone is on the walls," said Radford.
Lee draws all of his work freehand. He used the 12,000-square-foot facility as his canvas.
A translator told us Lee says he's proud of the work he's done and is grateful to be able to work in the United States.
Radford says she hopes gym members can look to the artwork for motivation if they ever feel discouraged.
"I hope that this would be kind of an inspiration for them," said Radford.
Lee spent about three days working on a mural outside of the gym. It depicts two Korean heroes who inspire him and shows symbols of Korean and American freedom.
"Every piece in the gym is unique," said Radford.
Lee says he imagines how people would feel when they look at his work. He uses that to drive him to work even harder.
"His art is extraordinary. To me, he is a genius and very talented," said Radford.
Lee is headed back to South Korea Saturday. This was Lee's first time in the United States. He spent 19 days in Warner Robins.