Artist Profile: Kelly Edelman

Artist Profile: Kelly Edelman

Meet Kelly Edelman, a mixed-media artist located in Fort Wayne, Indiana. Kelly is known for her vivid and bright portraits. She shares her artwork on Instagram at eyeinspired and on her YouTube. In sharing her artwork in tutorials, she hopes it will inspire others to start creating as well, "When I was a kid, I remember I'd leaf through all of the magazines and try to copy any kind of cartoon or illustration I saw. I thought now that they're all on social media and everybody is connected that way, how cool would it be to upload all of my stuff and I can inspire other people kind of like how I used to get inspired."

Kelly recalls she's been creating art since she could hold a pencil at age 3 or 4. Growing up, she was surrounded by artists; her mother and grandmother are cartoon artists. Kelly has fond memories of painting in the kitchen with both of them and finding her love of art then. They also helped teach Kelly how to cartoon from a young age. "My mom had a whole notebook of cartoon girls she was drawing, and I thought it was the coolest thing in the world when I saw it." Kelly started to practice and try to replicate her mother's art. When she achieved some level of mastery of cartoons, she decided to start creating a more realistic animation-type style. 

As a kid, Kelly wanted to become a fashion designer, primarily influenced by her aunt, who worked in theater. She would often bring trash bags full of fabric to Kelly, who would start sketching, piece them together into outfits for her Barbies, and have fashion shows. Kelly recalls that this eventually morphed into a more traditional mixed media art. Instead of continuing her skills in art school, Kelly taught herself and went to school for social work. Her love for art carried through, though; while working in the Fort Wayne community with foster care, she always included art. Kelly used painting as art therapy to help the children heal past their trauma. 

Kelly credits photos she has seen, people she's met, and music as her top influences. Kelly often went to music festivals, and seeing the costumes, glitters, and colors inspired her. She also finds that music reminds her of her artwork and aims to incorporate bold colors and patterns into her artwork when she can. Whenever she starts something new creatively, Kelly reminds herself, "Do your best and never give up, and it's going to go well. Always have fun with it because as long as you enjoy what you're doing, you're going to have a lot of motivation and be inspired to keep creating." 

When Kelly starts her artwork, she first imagines it in her head and then picks the medium that she thinks best suits the subject. Often, Kelly reaches for our Real Brush Pens®, especially when creating strokes like hair, eyelashes, and eyebrows. Kelly lays out the base colors for her artistic process, and once that dries, she builds on top of that with deeper shadows and details. 


Kelly remarks, "The thing that I like the most about Real Brush Pens is the portability, no mess, and they're really easy to create with. They dry almost immediately, and you only need about 5 minutes for them to dry. Between that and the watercolor brush pen that they come with, I really think that you can really use it for a variety of things. When you add a little water to these brushes, you can extend the paint and really make a wide variety of colors out of just one shade." Kelly's favorite shades to work with are Lilac and Sapphire Blue. She also loves using Lemon Yellow and adding it to any green shade to make it pop.

When asked what she would say to her younger self, Kelly thoughtfully responds, "You can have a very successful career in art. There are a lot of opportunities for it, and there is a lot of fun projects and connections waiting for you." Her determination and openness to whatever possibilities arise is truly inspiring! 

We hope this profile on Kelly Edelman has inspired you to pursue your goals and keep creating the art you love!


this is great


I wanna say thanks for sharing your story. Your drawings are amazing I’m always enjoying how you express your drawings and how you use your colors on them, So it’s realistic animation style I couldn’t figure out the name for it I like it and it’s good to know many different art styles, it’s great that your helping others heal from trauma and other obstacles like depression and anxiety especially kids by using your art I really admire that, think It’s way past cool to be surrounded by artists, your mother and grandmother must be great cartoon artists and have given so much to learn and gain from, support and love too. I’ve started drawing when I was 5 yrs old and Cartoons were my reason of drawing and from then on It’s always been my thing I guess I could say my art style I thinks I mean I always enjoy drawing cartoons, I didn’t have anyone to teach me I’m mostly self taught and started learning by watching cartoons but I won’t bore you with my story. My dream was to become a successful artist, just imagine of being an animator, a character designer or creating comic books or graphic novels, I also dreamt of creating my own characters and making a positive difference with my art as well. Slowly I stopped believing in myself and the dreams were fading a way but I’m working on getting that dream back though. When it comes to having certain disabilities or I ought to say different abilities, let’s just life has a way of making you feel that there’s no room for you and being NerouDiverse. I wish to achieved many levels of mastery of cartoons too and be a full time an successful artist. Your and your art are a huge inspiration for me, hearing your story makes want to believe that maybe “I can have a successful career in art, do the best that I can despite my different abilities and I wonder do I have a chance too? I want to believe that as well. I think I commented too much, Thanks Kelly Edelman for sharing.

Darion Epps

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