The Huron County Museum Gift Shop is growing its selection of products made by area artists and makers and we are pleased to feature the work of Huron County artist Kelly Stevenson. Kelly was inspired by photographs from our archival collection to create illustrations that are available as high-quality art prints and greeting cards. If you would like to pick up some of Kelly’s work, the Gift Shop is open during regular Museum hours and does not require admission to come in to shop and to support local! Learn more about Kelly and her work below!

Two images - historic image of two women picking apples, with second image illustrated recreation of historic image

Artist Kelly Stevenson was inspired by this Reuben Sallows photo from the Museum’s collection, at left, to create this illustration, at right.

Who are you and what do you make?

I’m an award-winning artist based out of Blyth, ON. My primary practice has mostly consisted of drawings done in ink and marker but during the pandemic I jumped head first into adding embroidery into my practice.

How did you start making art?

I was always a crafty kid but didn’t really start seeing being an artist as an option until later in high school when I was supported and encouraged to apply to art school. I ended up going to OCAD University, and have continued a regular artistic practice since then.

How would you describe your work?

My work typically utilizes simple black and white or greyscale imagery done primarily in either India ink, or pen and marker on paper. It’s graphic and controlled, taking inspiration from printmaking and children’s book illustrations, in order to be able to layout complex and often ambiguous narratives in a way that allows the viewer to enter the work and appear non-threatening.

What inspires you?

I take a lot of inspiration from my own life experiences, and my surroundings, using my work to try and make sense of the world and my place in it. Stylistically, I take a lot of inspiration from Henry Darger, children’s book illustration, John Scott, Nancy Spero, woodblock prints, Daniel Johnston, outsider art and graphic novels.

Historic image of barn raising with illustration beside

Artist Kelly Stevenson was inspired by this photo of a barn raising in Ashfield Twp. from the Museum’s collection, at left, to create this illustration, at right.

What do you like most about being an artist?

The part of being an artist I appreciate the most is the ability to communicate ideas where sometimes words aren’t enough, having a way of expression and the ability to use the work to connect with people. When someone else sees themselves or something they connect with in your work, it’s really rewarding and makes the vulnerability and amount of work to create really worth it.

If someone likes your work and wants to see more, where can they go (besides the Museum GIft Shop, of course!)?