My name is Kelly Simpson. I grew up in a small Northern California town of Placerville. I moved to Portland, Oregon after college and have never left. I have always loved creating art. My Grandmother is an oil painter and taught me basic techniques in her studio when I was young. I took art classes through high school and college but never took it too seriously.
I didn’t start painting again until about nine years ago when my life turned upside down. I was in a very unhealthy relationship and after years of stress my body shut down, literally. I was instantly immobile. I needed a way to release all of my frustrations and anger and I picked up my brush and have never stopped. After many painful years of not knowing what was wrong with me, I finally found a great neurologist that changed my life. There was a time when I was unable to walk without having seizure like symptoms, and I thought my teaching career and ability to paint were over. When I had a flare up, it affected my entire right side, so painting wasn’t an option, which made it that much more frustrating. Looking back, if I didn’t have that complete physical breakdown, I wouldn’t be where I am today. It just made me that much stronger and resilient. That is where the name of my shop came from, Kelly’s Art from the Soul.
Two years later I had my first art show at a friend’s house and sold 17 pieces that night. Things have taken off from there. Now, I have a wonderful husband, a new baby boy and have been in various art shows all over the Northwest, and have art hanging in homes and churches around the world.
I use a lot of rich, vibrant colors and most people comment that that is what draws them to my work. I love painting women and trees especially. I enjoy painting women of all cultures as the warriors they are, whether it’s in motherhood, activism, friendship or being that source of strength for so many. As for the trees, they remind me to stay grounded and draw from my roots. I also like to paint many different cultures together, celebrating and enjoying life under the same sun. This is my dream for mankind.
I rarely paint a typical landscape or portrait. I like to use whimsical abstract shapes and figures and let them tell my story. People, travel, color and music inspire me. It may be a powerful lyric in a song, a person’s life story, or something as simple as a beautiful Oregon day. My son has been my most recent inspiration and I find myself painting characters from stories I have read, or just creating images of our new family. I paint to bring me happiness and peace and I hope my work brightens the day of those who see it. I will continue to paint as long as my body is willing, and I pray that is a very long time.
You can see my entire collection of paintings at www.kellysartfromthesoul.com.
Visit my Etsy shop at https://www.etsy.com/shop/kellysartfromthesoul.
You can also like me on Facebook to follow my newest creative adventures at: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Kellys-Art-From-the-Soul/293870016060?ref=hl