Joel and I have been spending a fair portion of our wages on art and homely things of late. We have accumulated many painted skate decks, vinyl toys (KAWS included), cute Japanese illustrations of grumpy girls, coffee table books and even painted furniture which is yet to make it home. As much as I adore all of the art and figures we currently own, one of my New Years resolutions was to buy more art that reflects me, and my style. This means setting out to buy more fashion illustration style pieces that are whimsical, colourful and girly.
Enter Mekel. Mekel's art is all of the above and more. I like to think her style is a touch Kelly Smith (of Birdy and Me fame), a little bit Pippa McManus but still a whole lot Mekel. Using pencils, a runny black gel pen and watercolours, Kelly (the brainchild of Mekel) so gorgeously captures innocence, beauty and femininity in her art. Based locally, Kelly is very quickly making a name for herself in Perth.
I was lucky enough to get a few little truths and facts out of Kelly about herself and her work.
How old were you when you realised you liked drawing/painting?
I always had the creative bug from a young age. My earliest memories were probably in my early tweens, designing clothes. I always loved to draw the clothes, but not make them!
Where did you study?
I studied for three years at the Western Australian School of Art and Design in Northbridge, doing my "Advanced Diploma of Graphic Design and Multimedia".
What is your greatest achievement to date?
My first year focusing on Mekel illustration has been bigger and better than I could ever imagine. I was lucky enough to be chosen by Urban Walkabout to do the new Perth covers, a series of 4 city guides. I've also had the amazing opportunity to illustration a book which is now bookstores nationwide. 'More Money for Shoes' by Melissa Browne.
Do you gain inspiration from anyone in particular?
Esra Røise, Conrad Roset, manuel rebollo, ghostpatrol, Connie Lim, David Bray. I could go on and on! There's so many amazing artists out there.
What do you have in store for 2013?
My work so far has normally been quite small in scale, as I normally use pencil or a pen with watercolour. This year I plan to get bigger and bigger.
What is your favourite colour?
I love so many bright colours, every day its something different but i'll always come back to blue, its calming like the sea, the air.
Do you have a favourite thing to draw?
I love to keep drawings with an innocent simplicity, but add a few fine details. Hair, eyelashes or a fabric details like pattern, the shape of a collar or a button makes these things feminine to me
Do you have any favourite blogs to read?
Im visually following fashion blogs for their constant supply of gorgeous editorials and catwalk trends. Some of my current faves are lady petrova and yvan rodic.
Im particularly addicted to Pinterest at the moment as its a daily source of inspiration from artists and photographers I admire, and often cant draw fast enough for all the ideas that it gives me!
Where can we find Mekel art?
My folio is online at www.mekel.net you can also buy prints here, or contact me for commissions.