We had the good fortune of connecting with Keelia Trively and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Keelia, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
I wanted a way to help emerging artists not feel lost and unheard. I grew up in a low-income household where art wasn’t seen as a job, but a hobby, and I didn’t know anyone who had started their own business. Often times we look at the art world from the outside and we see these great artists and even those we consider “new” artists are actually those with years of experience and funding. I had neither, and neither did the people around me. This is still an obstacle that I face daily. But my goal is to lessen that obstacle for others while introducing emerging artists to new audiences.

Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Miss K Studio is an art boutique focused on showcasing local and global emerging artists, striving to provide them a larger audience for their work. This work started with my own background being from a low-middle income family. We worked hard and we earned what we got. But I didn’t grow up thinking that art could lead to a career. I came out to Phoenix in the summer of 2019 without the intention of staying. I started meeting people, other artists, a few of the local small business owners, I knew in my heart that I had found my home (then I met my fiance and now have even more of a reason to stay.) It hasn’t been easy by any means. No funding, a job that barely pays the bills, and almost no network in a new state. I truly believe it’s with the help of my God who has gotten me this far, and it’s honestly an incredible roller coaster I am excited to keep riding. I want people to see the power and validity of these emerging artists, and to stop believing the stereotype that art is only good if it’s worth a thousand dollars and was created by a person worth a million dollars. On a visual scale, I want to bring 1st Friday into Sunnyslope and make it affordable for emerging artists to participate.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Hikes! There are so many beautiful places to go on hikes here in AZ, you can do a new one each day! Camelback, Tom’s Thumb, Piestwa Peak, Dreamy Draw, Superstition mountains, south mountain, Phoenix Preserve mountain, the list goes on. For coffee I would take them to Cultivate Coffee and Xanadu. We would definitely hit up 1st Friday (before Covid times), walk around downtown Phoenix. Beers at Wildnerness, cocktails at Lovecraft and 32Shea. If they were staying longer than a week we would do a weekend backpacking trip in the Grand Canyon, for sure.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I want to thank my little sister above all for always being my inspiration and kick-in-the-pants when needed. Everything I do is for her so she can grow and spread her wings as wide as she wants. A BIG thank you to Bethany and Chris Priebe of Cultivate Coffee, a nonprofit coffee shop that strives to employ people who otherwise struggle to find work in the US, whether it’s a young adult aging out of the foster care system, a refugee seeking a safer way of life, or someone simply looking for a fresh start. I also want to thank Francesca, founder and owner of The Barking Bodega; AZ’s first off-leash dog park and bar!) for being a source of inspiration and a friend to bounce ideas off of. I also want to thank Charley, my fiance, for being a shoulder to cry on, a sounding board, and helping me see my home here.

Website: https://www.misskstudio.com/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/miss.kstudio/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/studio.missK/

Image Credits
Thomas B Nelson lll

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