The art world is ever-changing, and with new technology, new mediums, and changing values all affecting the art market, artists are always looking for ways to keep up with the pace and take control of their careers.
Emily Kalina, a graphic artist, is taking advantage of new advancements in technology to make art accessible and affordable for all. “I’ve always wanted to make art that everyone can enjoy, not just rich buyers looking for tax breaks,” she explains. “I want anyone who wants to to be able to buy my work, and technology has finally made that possible.”
Kalina is Carving Out an Artistic Legacy
Living with Epilepsy hasn’t been easy on Emily Kalina, but she has developed an approach that allows her to be successful in spite of the challenges her condition presents. With a few adaptations to her creative process and business model, she has enabled herself to carve out a bold and unique artistic legacy.
Just as a painter uses a paintbrush on canvas, Kalina creates paintings digitally using an Apple Pencil on an iPad Pro. This setup maintains the authenticity of the artistic process while providing more flexibility than traditional methods. It also allows her to upload, print, design custom products, and sell her work directly from the digital artwork she creates. This allows her to create affordable work that anyone can enjoy. In short, technology affords Kalina more control over the commercialization of her art than previously possible.
Finding Direction in Kalina’s Career
Kalina’s work as an artist has undergone many different iterations. For the first fourteen years of her career, she painted solely with watercolors while teaching part-time at a variety of private institutions. She considers herself especially fortunate to have studied under (and served as a Teaching Assistant for) renowned watercolorist Thomas Sgouros while she attended Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) during one of the most difficult periods of her life.
After a brief pause to reevaluate the direction of her work, Kalina rediscovered her passion for making affordable art that everyone can enjoy – not just the wealthy elite. According to Kalina, her new technological medium (painting on a digital surface with a stylus) has allowed her to make art that is affordable, accessible, and adaptable to different products.
Though Kalina initially took charge of every aspect of the business from marketing to order fulfillment, the advent of dropshipping and print-on-demand services have enabled her even greater flexibility, allowing her to take a step back and let technology do some of the hard work for her. “I didn’t want to outsource some of those essential functions because I was sailing through uncharted waters, and any missteps or a lack of oversight could have sunk the whole ship,” she explains. “However, with these new services and technologies, I don’t have to worry about that. Those parts of the business almost take care of themselves.”
Sharing Art with the World
Kalina doesn’t know where her career will lead her, but according to her, that’s part of what makes it exciting. “I’m going my own way, forging ahead onto paths previously untraveled, and I’m proud of that. I may not always know where I’m headed, but I know that it will be worth it in the end,” she says. Looking ahead to the future, Kalina hopes to inspire other artists with her story while sharing her love of art with the world.
Learn more about Emily Kalina, view her work, and shop her prints and products at https://emilykalina.com/.
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