Words, photos and video by Olivia Bauso
Kelly Place, owner and operator of Kelly Place Illustration and Design is a custom social stationery designer, calligrapher and artist here in Rochester, NY.
Kelly currently lives in Chili with her three children and works out of a cozy front room-- after bedtime, that is. Kelly says, “During the day it just looks like a lot of mothering, and really after bedtime is when the music comes on and I’m able to sketch and do work.” She has been lucky to be able to shape commissioned work around her home life, and still have time to create personal work when inspiration strikes.
“My path hasn’t been a straight one,” Kelly says. She continues: “I always thought I would end up being a mom that worked from home, but when I first graduated I was doing product design.” This lead her to work with 3D pieces and designs before she was introduced to the wedding and stationery industry. In the last few years, the majority of Kelly's work has been commissioned watercolor illustrations both for private clients and as a Minted artist.
Moving forward, Kelly hopes to put more focus on her exhibition work: “This is sort of my happy spot because I can do personal work, which others seem to enjoy too. There’s something nice about having the freedom to do your own work and still have it enjoyed, versus only creating client driven work.” Lately Kelly has found herself drawing still life around her, lettering inspirational quotes and painting florals and botanicals.
“I just hope to create an environment for my kids and myself that encourages exploration of media and self,” Kelly says. She adds, “Goals are great to have, but my goal is always just to grow in whatever direction I find myself heading.” Kelly's sketches, designs and pieces can be seen on her website, Instagram and on Minted.
Kelly’s exhibition work is on display in our Gallery Room now through the end of February. Stop by during our open hours to view her pieces as well as work from Heather Swenson, Alyssa Dewitt, and Corinne Ann Fallone.