Where do you live?
I live in Wellington, New Zealand but I grew up in the northeast of the United States. I fell in love with NZ in 2003 while visiting and have come back and forth from the States and Australia since then.
Where do you do your work?
I work out of my home now, but I love working while travelling because of the inspiration it brings. My dream is to own a studio space that I can share with my partner. It will be big enough to throw paint on canvases and will have a photography darkroom, small studio space, metal working area and much more. A place where anything can happen and I won’t need to tidy things up all the time.
What’s your favourite place in the world, and why?
Traveling is what makes me feel alive- I love every aspect of it, including the rough times! I have so many places that mean something special to me but I will try to narrow it down… I would have to say the Aspiring National Park on the South Island of New Zealand. The stillness of the forgotten spaces tucked away in the mountains is so centering, reminding me of what is most important in life and giving me a realistic view of what the world is in its true essence. I found that the Simpson Desert in Australia evoked similar emotions, including that of isolation and awareness of our need to survive – something I often forget living comfortably in the Western world.
Tell us a little bit more about yourself! Your ‘day job’ or business, family, hobbies…
I am interested in almost anything, well everything really. I work as a Hawaiian massage therapist as well as doing free-lance photography work and making the jewelry found on my Etsy site. I am currently working with my partner and his business partners to launch an exciting new international business that will raise money for Charities and Non-Profit Organizations worldwide.
I love seeing people express their passion through their art or their language – it is incredibly inspiring. I enjoy reading non-fiction and learning new things. I find that I get quite down emotionally if I am not creating something – whether it is a photograph or piece of jewelry, cooking, writing, etc. the list goes on ☺ My partner works in the film industry and is frequently working 80+ hour weeks, so some of my happiest times are when he has time off and we are able to indulge ourselves in our creative endeavors together, go for walks or go swimming. Also any time I get to spend with my family is special for me because we are so far away from one another, geographically speaking.
What did you want to be ‘when you grew up’?
I changed my mind so frequently as to what I wanted to be when I grew up. I knew I wanted to help people, so for most of my childhood and adolescence I wanted to be a doctor and work in impoverished areas in the States and Africa. Then my passion turned to photography and photojournalism. Now I am finding my own way on a completely undiscovered path and hoping that it will lead me to exactly where I need to be.
How did you first get into your craft/art?
I have always enjoyed creating things and giving my creations away to others. I was convinced that I was not “artsy” for the longest time (for roughly the same amount of time I was convinced I was going to be a doctor… strange how those worlds don’t meet up as often as they should). I took an art and religion course at college/university and my world opened up. I realized that I didn’t have to be an artist for anyone else other than me and my life immediately changed.
What do you make?
I first started out making incredibly complex collage sculpture art. My style has now flowed in to a more simple form, but I still find it to be complex in its meaning, rather than its physicality. I now make images using film and digital photography. I have a newly acquired Holga camera and old Polaroid Land camera that I am enjoying experimenting with. In April of this year I started making jewelry. I started out with no knowledge of how to do things and found my way by experimenting and inspiration from other artists’ work.
What are you most proud of making?
My final project for the art and religion class I mentioned above was a three-dimensional sculpture piece that explored my emotions surrounding a family member who was chronically ill with cancer. It was an exploration into the strength of the individual, the power of community and our profound ability as human beings to express ourselves in so many different and beautiful ways.
What do you like the most/least about selling your wares online?
I really miss getting to meet the people who enjoy my work. I love hearing people’s stories and how they personally relate to the photo/jewelry they are purchasing. I sometimes get emails from buyers but I miss the face-to-face communication.
Ben and Jerry’s ice cream… my family, the mountains, the desert, the look on a childs face when they have accomplished something they thought was impossible, the feeling when I have accomplished something I thought was impossible, and the list goes on!
It drives me crazy when…
The media misrepresents cultures, people, political situations, etc and the result is racism, bigotry and failure to find truth within oneself.
What’s your favourite word?
If you could sum yourself or your work up in one sentence, it would say…
“Be the change you want to see in the world.” – Gandhi
Visit Kelsi Online!
Facebook Page: (just started it this one) http://www.facebook.com/pages/Ike-Designs-Handcrafted-Jewelry/124676546683
Kelsi is giving away a gift voucher for $20USD off any purchase from her Etsy site or photography site. There is some gorgeous goodness to be had – so get browsing!
2. For additional entries, leave a comment saying that you: followed or subscribed to Epheriell Designs (or already do); have Twittered about the givewaway; have shared the giveaway with friends on Facebook, or; you have written a blog post about it.
3. Entries close next Sunday night, the 8th of November, at 12pm Australian EST. Winners are announced the next day as part of next week’s Feature and Giveaway post.
Remember to leave me a way of contacting you.. and Good Luck!
Last week’s winner was Jacks - congrats!