During a time when midterms loom and the air is cold and gloomy, many students find their last threads of motivation through the escape known as “Halloween Spirit.”
For one Missouri Western student, that escape has turned her artistic passion into a profit.
Katie Frazee, junior, is pursuing a degree in art education with a minor in painting.
Frazee launched her first coloring book this past month on Etsy, and it’s spooky aesthetic has drawn the attention of many. Frazee’s interest in art dates as far back as she and her family can remember.
“I used to take objects I found such as old tshirts, cigarette cartons and nail polish and make something out of it,” Frazee said.
Frazee’s mother, Kimberly, has kept all her work from as early as before kindergarten. “Her art was and is all over the house” said Kimberly. “As soon as she picked up a crayon, her interest began” Kimberly said.
Frazee started posting her artwork online during her senior year of high school. The feedback helps her want to keep creating new prints.
“I was really overwhelmed with the amount of them I sold,” Frazee said.
Frazee isn’t sure how she would describe her style, but said she’s always been attracted to clean sharp lines with little to no color. Her inspirations include several famous names students might recognize, such as Andy Warhol, Tim Burton and Frida Kahlo.
“But there are also smaller artist I have found through Instagram like Tomasita Oliveras and Torianne,” Frazee said.
Every print that Frazee sells was created first in a sketchbook with just pencil, eraser and a micro pen, proving that it doesn’t take expensive supplies to create inspiring work.
Although drawing has always been one of her favorite mediums, Frazee discovered painting and several other art forms through her classes in Potter Hall. One particular piece she created last semester required Frazee to make a ceramic bust of her own head.
Professors Eric Fuson and Kathy Liao in the art department have been Frazee’s biggest inspirations during her time here.
“Kathy completely turned my world upside down in Painting 1 and showed me I actually knew nothing about painting and how to use color properly,” Frazee said.
Frazee describes Fuson as a tough love kind of teacher, but one who she respects. He’s the main inspiration behind her sketchbook.
“He told me I wasn’t ready for intermediate drawing because I couldn’t draw hands” Frazee said. “At first, I was upset but then I joked with him that I was going to fill an entire sketchbook with hands to prove him wrong. Although I never did that, I did fill a sketchbook.”
Jazmin Rivera, junior, is also studying art and has been best friends with Frazee since kindergarten.
“We had an AP Portfolio class together and her work was always brilliant. Since we’ve started at Missouri Western her talent has exploded,” Rivera said.
Often times, artistic creativity comes through the inspiration of tough times, of which Rivera says Frazee has gone through a few.
“She’s also gone through a lot of health problems and issues at home, so the fact that she’s only worked even harder at her art and stayed with it says a lot to me,” Rivera said.
As a full-time art student, it can be hard to find time to create personal projects on top of having to complete assignments for class. Frazee mainly finds the motivation to draw at night. As far as routines go, she normally cleans the living room, lights candles and completes the process with music or rain sounds.
She notes her personal atmosphere and music tastes could be partially to blame for the melancholy aesthetic of her work. Partially to blame as well is her deep love for Tim Burton’s work.
Students can celebrate the last week of Halloween by visiting Frazee’s artwork on Facebook and purchasing prints of her coloring book on Etsy at KFrazeeArt.