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Meet The Maker: Interview with Kelly Maker

Kelly Maker's designs taken from her Instagram @kellymaker

International Women’s Day is the time to celebrate groundbreaking and trailblazing women, and girl, we’ve found a firecracker. We had the pleasure of talking to the wildly talented digital artist and photographer Kelly Maker, aka THE STONE COLD FOX, who’s unique and captivating edits prevail over Instagram and secure her firmly at the top of her game. Both handcrafted and using digital manipulation, Maker creates enchanting ‘edits’, reimagining fashion and photography campaigns with her fantastical flair, which you’re sure to double tap, save and share.

Kelly Maker's designs taken from her Instagram @kellymaker

The Melbourne based artist began her craft at just 19 and is entirely self-taught; her collagic edits masterly overlay human frames onto a variation of backgrounds which include florals, literature, newspapers cuttings and glitters that invites a fresh dynamic and elevate each image to fantastical new levels, her digital wonderland providing fertile ground for inspiration. Very quickly, her cult following grew exponentially across social media and her digital prowess didn’t go unnoticed for long and soon piqued the interest of some of the biggest names in the industry: so much so that Candice Swanepoel handpicked her to collaborate with on her swim label Tropic of C – now there’s a duo I’d want to sit with.

Kelly Maker's designs taken from her Instagram @kellymaker

Maker has been featured in Vogue Australia, worked with Free People and her work has been recognised and shared by names like Miley Cyrus, Versace and catwalk models alike. In short, she’s a pretty big deal.

We love her, and we’re pretty sure (if you don’t already) you will too:

1). When did you first fall in love with art?

I have always been a very creative person and always wanted to pursue something creative, whether that be writing, painting, drawing etc. it was in High school that I actually had the chance to explore I more and this solidified my love for all things artistic.

2). What is your preferred medium? Digital or analogue?

Analogue for photography and digital for creating art so I can be more precise with my photos.

3). What is the best project/favourite edit you have ever worked on, and what would you consider a highlight of your career?

There’s truly so many artworks I’ve created that I love so narrowing it down to one is next to impossible. In terms of a highlight, early last year I had the incredible opportunity to work with Candace Swanepoel and her brand Tropic of C. This was so amazing and the pieces I made for her campaign are some of my favourites.

Kelly Maker's designs taken from her Instagram @kellymaker

4). When do you feel the most creative? What tends to unearth this creativity?

I find my creativity is most active at night. I tend to stay up late working on things and sleep in in the mornings. The day is usually spent working a second job or doing photoshoots.

5). Your edits vacillate between literature/see-through and glitter – how do you decide which background to use? Is the literature specific to each image?

Those are just 3 of many different styles I do but really it all depends on the image. Sometimes I will match the text to the overall concept but usually its more about colour, density of text and how it pairs with the image.

6). What is your favourite book? / What book should everyone read?

I recently read the Rosie Project which was amazing. One of my all-time favourites is a series called Women Who Made History. Each book outlines the lives of well-known historic women such as Cleopatra, Queen Elizabeth I and many others.

7). How have you managed imitations and copycat issues?

Initially, in the early days, it really bothered me, but I have learnt to embrace my fans and their desire to re-create my work. It’s quite flattering and who am I to stop anyone from expressing their creativity. Many artists do start out by copying their favourite artists while they find their own creative style and that’s totally fine.

Kelly Maker's designs taken from her Instagram @kellymaker

8). How has Instagram culture/social media platforms helped/hindered your artistic journey?

Social media is a big part of my success. Without it, I wouldn’t have had the boost from day one from various celebrities and models reposting my work, giving me a huge amount of exposure. It hinders me in that everything is too accessible so those who want to steal my work and not credit can usually get away with it if I don’t see it or if someone doesn’t call them out.

9). What messages are putting out to the world with your art?

Your inspiration can take you anywhere you want to go.

10). How do you want your art to function in society?

I’m happy with it being something that inspires people.

11). What’s your morning/bedtime routine?

Mornings start with a coffee and a short walk before heading to my second job.

Nights are reserved for getting some art done and answering emails.

12). What has the last week looked like?

I’ve been working quite regularly, going to photoshoots and communicating with clients on upcoming projects.

Kelly Maker's designs taken from her Instagram @kellymaker

13). How do you practice self-care?

By listening to my mind and body and understanding what makes me healthy and happy. Eating well, exercising, having self-love and confidence and not wearing myself out are all important parts of my self-care.

14). What did you need to hear as a young girl? What is the best piece of advice you have ever received?

I was told once in the 10th grade by a teacher that she thought I was really talented in my writing (at the time I wanted to be a novelist) and she was determined to support me on this journey. She told me that I can do anything I put my mind to and be anything I want to be. This stuck with me and played a huge role in deciding to pursue the artwork.

15). What would be your ideal day off?

A day at the beach.

16), What could you spend hours talking about?

Art, the planet, the universe, psychology, anything technical.

17). What always cheers you up?

Watching a good movie or TV show and cuddling my dogs.

18). Best hangover cure?

Hangover cures are a myth, you just gotta ride it out!

19). What can’t you live without?

My family.

Kelly Maker's designs taken from her Instagram @kellymaker

Kelly can be found on Instagram @kellymaker

Words by Lizzy Greenwood

Graphics by Kelly Maker

#KellyMaker, #TheStoneFox, #Graphics, #art, #design, #interview, #artist, #photos, #photograph, #photographer

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