Five for Friday: Tattoo Artist Kelsey Moore
Check out what Chicago tattoo artist Kelsey Moore had to say about style, creativity, and more!
We first met Kelsey back in 2018 when she collaborated with us to create gem-inspired tattoos with for our Body Adornment event to celebrate A+T's 1 year anniversary. Since then, half of the Adornment team has been lucky enough to get tattooed by Kelsey at her studio space inside of Ash + Ivory, so we figured she'd be the perfect addition to our Five for Friday series! Read all about Kelsey's creative process + personal style, and check out her work on Instagram @kelsey_moore_tattoo
Where do you tend to find inspiration for your work or passion projects?
I find most of my inspiration in nature. Beyond being entranced with her beauty, going to the woods and just being with myself and the surroundings helps me clear my head and make space for new ideas. Being around other artists in general is super important to me as well. It’s great when you can critique each other or just be in the same space drawing, painting or tattooing and feeling the creative energy. There’s always something to learn from someone even if their style is vastly different.
How would you describe your personal style?
I’ve always felt I’ve struggled sticking to a specific style. I get bored if I’m always working with the same subject matter so I like to mix it up as a challenge and for fun. In tattooing I’d say my style would vaguely be described as illustrative and whimsical. I also enjoy combining architectural shapes with organic subjects.
Who would you say has been your biggest influence- style wise, personally, or professionally?
On a personal and artistic level I’d say my Grandpa Hummingbird, formally known as Richard Sloan is my biggest influence. Although passed when I was young, I’ve always looked up to him and his work. He was an extremely talented and fairly well recognized painter who put a lot of care into conservation efforts. I think growing up knowing that he was able to build a life around art gave me optimism that I could make that possible too. I really do wish I had the opportunity to talk with him or watch him paint as an adult!
What is some professional advice you received that helped you navigate your current artistic projects + career path?
I’d say the most important advice is that it’s okay to take a break. It’s way too easy to feel the pressure of needing to be as productive as possible at all times and the tattoo industry is no exception. There’s a sense of guilt when I take a vacation or don’t try to fill a day that randomly opens up. It’s hard to find a good balance but now I allow myself to take the time to reboot. I truly feel I have the best job in the world for me and the last thing I want is to get burnt out.
What is your favorite piece of jewelry?
My favorite piece of jewelry is a petrified wood ring that I got from my mom. I’ve been wearing it for the last 15 years and I just feel off without it. There’s some serious bad luck superstition around stolen petrified wood from the petrified forest in Arizona so I really hope thats not where this stone originated from...knock on wood.