We had the good fortune of connecting with Kris Rose and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kris, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
Starting my own business was the most natural path forward for me. From painting to drawing to writing, I’ve always loved to create things, and could never imagine a life where that wasn’t a central part of my work. Building my business has been a process of just taking one step at a time. Because of this, my progression has been slow, but it has allowed me to explore a wider range of options to see what works best for me. I was wary of putting all my eggs in one basket, so I worked to create multiple revenue streams: I sell my books and art online, and I’m working towards selling more of my original paintings and eventually monetizing my travel blog.
Location independence was a big part of what attracted me to starting my own business. I wanted the freedom to travel and do what I’m passionate about. I’ve also never been able to hold still for very long. The flexibility to paint, travel and write sounded a lot better to me than trying to squeeze my creative pursuits into a 9-to-5 life. Of course, this means my hours are odd and sometimes a lot longer than what I might have at a more traditional job, but I don’t mind. At the end of the day, I started this pursuit because I believed it was the option that would make me the happiest. We’re not here to suffer, and I think it’s important to do whatever is within our means to help ourselves and others be happy. My hope is that through my work I can share some of the love and joy I’ve found with others, and encourage them to embrace what makes them happy, too.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I’m an artist, author and travel blogger, and I like to sum up my work by saying I travel the world and paint what I see. I draw most of my inspiration from places I’ve visited, so you’ll see a lot of Central California’s golden hills and the Australian outback in my work.
I’ve been making art since I was old enough to hold a pencil, but I didn’t always think being an artist was a viable career path. I spent quite a few years trying to figure out another career, even switching from an art major to environmental studies. I have a passion for nature, and while I’m still working on getting my bachelor’s degree in environmental studies, I’ve stopped trying to separate art from work. Although most people say art and science don’t mix, it’s through science that I’ve been able to gain a deeper appreciation of art, and vice-versa. Studying science while owning my own business can be a little overwhelming at times, but allows me to take my art in new directions I wouldn’t have considered otherwise. I use my knowledge of the natural world to go deeper in my art and writing. My hope is that by highlighting our world’s beauty through paintings, poetry and even travel writing, I can help encourage people to appreciate and conserve it.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Right now I’m living in Monterey, California for school, so I’ve spent the past year exploring the area and trying to find some of the best places to visit.
For entertainment, Cannery Row and the Monterey Bay Aquarium are the number one places to visit, and where you should go if you’re short on time. The Aquarium is world-famous for its incredible exhibits and cutting-edge research – their newest exhibit is all about the deep sea, and features the biggest collection of deep-sea animals in North America. McAbee Beach is a popular beach right next to Cannery Row that becomes almost completely submerged in high tide. Order takeout from a nearby restaurant to eat on the beach, or if it’s underwater, dine above it on one of the many balconies or window seats overlooking it (I recommend Ghirardelli, where you can split a great sundae). Lover’s Point Park is within walking distance, a mile away, and is the perfect place to sit and watch the sunset. Nearby, the small city of Carmel-by-the-Sea is more upscale compared to Monterey’s laid-back nature, but has some wonderful shops and dozens of art galleries.
Monterey and the surrounding area also have one of the largest collections of state parks and beaches around. Garrapata State Park and Point Lobos State Park are within half an hour of Monterey, and offer some truly incredible ocean views. A few of my favorite local beaches, from north to south, are Fort Ord Dunes State Park (Marina), Point Pinos State Beach (Pacific Grove), Carmel River State Beach, Garrapata State Beach, and Pfeiffer Beach (Big Sur). Regarding that last one – Big Sur is only an hour from Monterey, making it the ideal day trip. Known for its dramatic coastal cliffs, redwood forests and stunning waterfalls, there’s a lot to see here. I recommend Pfeiffer Falls at Pfeiffer Big Sur, McWay Falls at Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park, and of course Pfeiffer Beach with its famed purple sand.
The Fish Hopper is one of my favorite options for seafood, partly because of their dining areas with wonderful views overlooking the Monterey Bay. Cibo serves Italian food with live jazz Sundays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays during dinner. For a less expensive option, try Pizza My Heart, one of Monterey’s most popular pizza restaurants. Sly McFly’s is also on Cannery Row, and is a great place to get a drink – while it may be crowded with tourists during the day, at night it becomes the locals’ favorite place to hang, with live music every night. Alvarado Street Brewery is another popular option, though there are several other excellent brew pubs in the area (my family swears by English Ales in nearby Marina). There’s a farmer’s market each day of the week on the Monterey Peninsula, but one of my favorites is the Tuesday evening market in Monterey, which has lots of vendors selling everything from fresh produce to snacks to hot meals. Parker-Lusseau also has wonderful pastries, and is located just a block from the market. Finally, Revival Ice Cream (also next to the market) has some of the best ice cream in town. My favorite is their award-winning Bee’s Knees, with their honeycomb-inspired candy.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I want to dedicate my shoutout to Angela Johal, one of my first art teachers. Her never-ending patience and encouragement during lessons meant the world to me, and helped me form the foundations of my practice. Seeing her success as a local artist in the San Francisco Bay Area was so inspiring, and she was always willing to share advice on how to get started in the art world, even during chance meetings at the store years down the road. She helped me continue to follow my passion and grow my practice during times when art was one of the only bright spots I could see. Thank you, Angela.
(Lest they think they were any less important, I also want to thank my parents, for their encouragement and love. Go raibh maith agat.)
Other: Tiktok: https://www.tiktok.com/@krisorionrose
Kris Orion Rose