Growing up is one of the hardest things people have to do. With luxuries and privileges comes responsibility for many: a job. Two Barren County High School students have taken their artistic abilities and created their own
jobs. Taylor Davidson and Kaleigh Gibson, seniors, sell homemade artwork to the community.
Each student has been involved in art for some time, but the two have not always used their abilities for profit.
Davidson found her artistic talent at an early age.
“I’ve drawn ever since I’ve been able to walk,” Davidson said. “I’m very guilty of drawing in church on Sunday afternoons, when I was little.”
Davidson said art has always been natural for her since her grandfather draws well and her mother possesses some art ability.
“She [her mother] actually used to do little art shows,” Davidson said. “She would teach how to do a canvas, and I would help her.”
According to Davidson, her mother is not her only inspiration to pursue art.
“I believe that God has given me a natural gift in art, and if you don’t use your talents to glorify him, then he could very well take that talent away,” Davidson said. “I definitely don’t want art to go anywhere.”
Davidson began selling artwork earlier this year. With her interest in art, she progressed to selling it for money. While she is still in the early stages of her business, she has sold several pieces.
Barren County’s geographic and cultural region inspires many topics of Davidson’s artwork.
“Since we live in a country area, I try to create more farmhouse type art,” Davidson said. “I try to keep in mind what people will want to buy.”
Painting cows and other farm animals hasn’t always been the center of Davidson’s personal art projects, but she said it has benefitted her creating different types of work.
“It opens me up from what I’m used to,” Davidson said.
She said typical projects are portraits and flowers, “basic” things.
One project Davidson perfected was her photographer piece.
In eighth grade, Davidson liked vintage cameras. The teacher typically assigned work, but Davidson proposed that project to her.
“It was all my inspiration,” Davidson said. “I didn’t go off of anything else.”
Despite the photographer having no name, the art recently sold.
Davidson shares artwork on Instagram and her personal Facebook page. She plays volleyball and is studying to become a pharmacy technician with the biomed program. She can be found at the Instagram handle @taylor.davidson.art.
Calligraphy Creations in Kentucky
Kaleigh Gibson never imagined seeing her artwork at Unique Gifts, The Market in Glasgow, Kentucky.
Gibson taught herself different forms of calligraphy in Nov. 2016. The next month, her mother bought a press and Gibson sold her first piece of art.
“My friend wanted my handwriting on a shirt so I did that,” Gibson said. “I put it on Facebook and people went crazy.”
Gibson’s business took off from there. With “Southern” influenced artwork, she sells her sublimation and vinyl designs on magnets, canvases, envelopes, decals, shirts and tank tops, and baseball tees.
Although Calligraphy Creations uses a lot of writing in its designs, Gibson has tried new designs.
In wake of sports seasons, Gibson began selling designs made by local artists on her shirts.
Although art has been a factor for her business, marketing has been a greater influence. Gibson said she had a play store from an early age. She has studied marketing throughout high school where she has developed relationships with her business teachers.
“My business teachers have been really supportive,” Gibson said. “They’ve helped me get out of my comfort zone.”
Through this motivation, Gibson hopes to open her own business or have an online store. For now, she intends to stay at Unique Gifts, The Market selling new designs.
“I’ve always loved Unique Gifts,” Gibson said. “Being here is like a dream.”
The store has allowed Gibson to share her artwork aside from social media. The location is also convenient for her customers.
“It’s a good central pickup location for everybody,” Gibson said.
One thing remains the same for Gibson: small business enthusiasm. Gibson said she uses other small business’ designs to show support for them.
“We support them and people support us by buying the designs on our shirts,” Gibson said.
Gibson said new designs will come out around Saint Patrick’s Day and Valentine’s Day.
For more information, Calligraphy Creations can be found on Facebook and Instagram at the handle @CalligraphyCreationsinKY.