Interview: Caroline Kowalchyk

Today we’re joined by Caroline Kowalchyk.  Caroline is an incredibly versatile and talented visual artist.  She does a little bit of everything: painting, sculpting, graphic design, video editing, etc.  I was reading through the list of mediums she works with and was left absolutely awestruck.  My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.

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WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

I make all sorts of art. I consider myself a visual artists because I try to go for looks that capture your attention visually. I paint, sculpt, do graphic design, video editing, typography, and most recently web design and game design.

My painting is pretty mood based, I just sort of paint how I feel if that makes sense, it’s a stress reliever not a career path. My sculpting is definitely on the weird side, but hey that makes it fun! I’ve sculpted things like elephant heads (yes, just the heads), a giant ear, a miniature rotisserie chicken (I don’t even know why), and just crazy stuff like that. In graphic design I do anything computer generated typography to logo design/branding and just about everything in between. Video is a true, true passion of mine and I plan on going to school for it. I love creative film especially advertising and creative film. I honestly think anyone can film with enough practice. Web design and game design are still definitely hobbies that I’m still trying to get a hold of so I won’t go into too much detail about them. The only game I’ve made, believe it or not, is a game about becoming Tumblr famous. The objective is to strategically move around the platforms which are hot pick keyboards and collect new followers and fan mail while avoiding crashing computers and hate mail. Your only defense is to block the user to get rid of the hate mail. Oh yeah and I also do a lot of photography.

What inspires you?

Everything inspires me. I see something and go “damn that would make an awesome painting” or hear a song and just plan a music video in my head for it. I’ll see a logo that I can’t stand and I’ll re design it in my sketch book. I’ll think of a difficulty in my life (like becoming Tumblr famous) and make a game out of it. I spend a lot of time outside so I guess a lot of my art is “nature inspired”, but I like to think I’m inspired by living.

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What got you interested in your field?  Have you always wanted to be an artist?

My cousin Kelsey Lancaster is an absolutely brilliant graphic designer, she got me interested in graphic design and type. My best friend Jordan Hyre is quite the artist and she motivates me to keep up with painting and sculpture. I really got interested in the arts though in about 2006 when my mom bought me my first video camera. That’s when it all began. Honestly, no, I never thought I could be an artist, and I never really wanted to be one until recently. A switch just kind of went off one day and was like “this is what you need to do for the rest of your life, this is your calling, quite ignoring it! Go to school get a degree and set up shop.” So that’s what I’m doing.

Do you have any kind of special or unique signature, symbol, or feature you include in our work that you’d be willing to reveal?

I like my films to be psychedelic, my pictures are mostly either very out of focus or very focused and that’s on purpose it make you look more, and if you ever see a sculpture of a giant ear in a museum someday that was probably me.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

To all of you young aspiring artists (given that I still consider myself one) : You know when you’re half way through that painting, don’t know what your sculpting, realize that you left the lens cap on while shooting your best scene, didn’t focus the camera correctly, fucked up one line of code, or think that suicide is a better option than finish the game your working on, JUST FINISH IT. Finish the damn piece, keep the black video, sculpt some weird ass shape, keep the  stupid blurry picture, go through the code and find the mistake you’re- too smart and successful and talented to do anything half assedly and if you want to know the truth only 3 things can happen with all these projects, 1) you make it work and you love it 2) it looks like shit, but hey someone out there will pay money for it or 3) you fix it until you love it. Never give upon a single piece literally ever.

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ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I consider myself a bi/pan-romantic asexual.

Have you encountered any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field?  If so, how do you handle it?

Well, where I live being gay is still very bad so I can’t really come out to anyone. In the art field however I haven’t faced any prejudice as far as I know. I’m a pretty “stand up girl”, I’m very confident and I don’t see how anyone could think less of me because I don’t want to hook up with them, or anyone else for that matter.

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What’s the most common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?

“It doesn’t exist”.

What advice would you give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their orientation?

Go to an ace meet up. Join AVEN, get a Tumblr, email me. There is strength in numbers and I think the only way we aces can really be comfortable with who we are is to understand that there are people like us. We’re not damaged, we’re not weird, we’re normal beautiful people just like everyone else. Also, I really recommend doing some research and some soul searching, once you find a label that you identify 150%  with it makes it much easier to not only accept yourself but to come out.

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Finally, where can people find out more about your work?

Find more about my work by contacting me,  reaching me by email (kowalchykc@gmail.com)  is normally best, keep up with me on Instagram (carol_kowalchyk), visit my etsy shop (https://www.etsy.com/shop/BlabbermouthInc  yeah I know it’s really dead right now I’m still working on some stuff),

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Thank you so much, Caroline, for participating in this interview and this project.  It’s very much appreciated.

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