Spotlight on Kim Gee Studio
We have to say, we are more than a little bit excited about Kim Gee and what she has brought to the Isle of Man since her relocation from New York! Both in terms of choice for YOU, our lovely brides and grooms, and her abundance of talent, effortless style, professionalism and beauty she has brought to the local wedding scene! We caught up with Kim earlier last year and now we are here to share her story, and super awesome wedding offerings to you.
Kim, tell us a bit about your business, your background in art and how it all started …
I’m originally from New York, and moved to the Isle of Man almost two years ago. To answer the question you’re all thinking, I met a guy when traveling in London, moved over there to be with him, and then we moved to the Isle of Man for his job. Crazy, I know!
I studied illustration and design at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City, and worked as a graphic designer for a few years back in New York. When I moved to the Isle of Man, I went out on my own and founded Kim Gee Studio, providing graphic design, illustration, and art experiences. This means that each day is a mix of designing logos and websites, illustrating pets and family portraits, or hosting life drawing events for the island’s friendliest creatives. It’s basically the best job ever, and I’ve never looked back!
It’s super hard not to fall in love with your vibrant personality and witty humour. You’re totally owning your transition from New York to the wee Isle of Man! What are you most excited about for 2018?
You are too kind!! I’ve really embraced this big life change, the novelty of the island hasn’t worn off for me yet. In 2017 I really found my footing on the Isle of Man, and in 2018 I’m hoping to make Kim Gee Studio even bigger and better.
I created the Isle of Man Drawing Club last year after realizing there wasn’t really a life drawing option here for adult artists, and I now host monthly life drawing sessions with 50 attendees and a nude model at Noa Bakehouse. It’s a total blast, and this year I want to get the Drawing Club up to two meetings a month, one with our usual life drawing format, and one as a more of a workshop where you can learn different drawing techniques. It’s harder than it looks to organize these events, but I’m going to make it happen, I swear.
I also want to put out a line of products this year featuring my original illustrations, but it’s all in the idea stage at this point. Stay tuned!
Let’s talk hen parties! We know everyone is dying to know the details of your newly released Hen Party Events. Is this the ‘New York Buzz’ we’ve all been waiting for?
I think it could be! Building on the success of the constantly sold-out Isle of Man Drawing Club, I’m thrilled to announce that I’m now offering life drawing workshops for hen parties, birthdays, corporate events, you name it! I provide a lovely nude model (male or female, your pick), art supplies for the group, and then lead the party through 2 hours of drawing techniques and timed poses to improve your drawing skills and create some classic renderings of the human figure.
I didn’t come up with the idea, these types of life drawing hen parties are already popular in the US and UK, but I’m so excited to bring them to the Isle of Man! You don’t need to have any previous drawing experience, and even though you’ll be drawing a nude model it’s not sleazy at all! This is all about having a brand new experience and a giggle with your favourite people as you slowly progress from stick figures as the night goes on.
We can think of a hundred reasons why live event drawing is a total winner to entertain wedding guests this year. What would you say to couples thinking about booking live event illustration for their big day?
Having a live portrait artist at your wedding is such a fun experience! In the last year I’ve painted hundreds of live portraits at everything from corporate parties to Christmas fayres, and it’s entertaining for everyone involved. Instead of having a wacky caricature done that gives you a complex about your chin, I create adorable stylized speed portraits in watercolour and ink that highlight all your best features. Each portrait takes between 5-10 minutes, and your guests will get to walk away with a totally unique memento from your special day.
Can you give us a show of some of your magnificent wedding portraits you’ve done recently?
I’d love to! In addition to the speed portraits I do at live events, I also can create more realistic watercolour portraits from photos for couples and families. I’ve had customers use these on their wedding invitations, programs, and Christmas cards, and it is so satisfying for me to see.
And finally …
Do you have any advice for couples planning their wedding??
Don’t be afraid to get a little creative! You don’t need to have an out-of-the-box wedding, there are so many talented people on this island who would love nothing more than to collaborate on bringing your crazy ideas to life.