Welcome to the surreal world of Kelly Eden. Yes, this was shot at her house. Yes, she has that phone, and a pink throne and a carousel horse…
Photographs by Brian Ziff Interview questions by Readers
We’re a fan of Kelly Eden, and we are not alone. We asked you, via social media, to interview Kelly, here’s what she had to say:
When did you realise art was so important? — Sage Herrera
Kelly Eden: Probably when my elementary school teacher started putting me in the back of the class and sending notes to my mum because I wouldn’t stop drawing.
Who are your favourite tattoo artists? — Luna Light
Kelly Eden: There are so many amazing tattoo artists out there that I admire but all my tattoo work is exclusively done by Nikko Hurtado… I would have more tattoos if he would text me back! (hint hint)
What is your favourite tattoo? — Ramana Aqeel
Kelly Eden: That’s so hard to choose! If I had to choose one, it would be my David Bowie Labyrinth tattoo on my thigh. This was the first tattoo Nikko did on me when I was 18 years old. Ever since I got it, I’ve loved seeing people light up when they see it. “Oh my god, Is that the Goblin King?” The genuine excitement coming from fellow Labyrinth fans is endearing and it leads me to connect with other people who share the same love for this legendary movie. It reminds them of the babe — that’s a Labyrinth pun, for those of you who don’t know.
How has your mental health affected your life and how have you/are you overcoming it? — A_Typical_ Weirdo
Kelly Eden: This is an important question, thank you for asking. It is so important to me to spread awareness about mental illness. Growing up, I suffered from several mental illnesses without knowing what was really wrong with me. I felt so abnormal compared to everyone else, I knew there was something wrong with me but didn’t know what. It wasn’t until my own father lost his life to mental illness and addiction that I was able to recognise my own mental illnesses and be diagnosed. Now I want to be an advocate for mental health and offer support to anyone who may be suffering from mental illness. Anyone dealing with mental illness knows that it’s a day-to-day struggle but I’ve learned how to deal with my low points. It’s taught me to embrace who I am.
As someone who also struggles with depression and anxiety I have trouble reflecting anything but those emotions on the outside. You do not seem to have that same problem because you come off as being nothing but happy. — Taylor Sebree
Kelly Eden: Believe me, it took a lot of work and continues to be an ongoing battle. Battling with depression and social anxiety can lead to self isolation. I was only able to break free once I gained self acceptance and surrounded myself with loving, supportive friends who empathise with me. Depression is a rollercoaster, there are highs and lows as it comes and goes. When I’m feeling low, I usually shut myself off from the world for a while. I never post anything about it because I don’t want to bring anyone else down with me.
If you could live in any anime, which would it be? — BigNoseBug
Kelly Eden: I think I’d like to live in the Inuyasha world. I would have my pick of any handsome demon lord I choose.
Did you ever have any other style besides this pastel style you have now? If so, are you embarrassed by your past styles? —Rebecca Koontz
Kelly Eden: Didn’t everyone go through a goth phase?
What does your landlord think of your doll house?
— Thalia Zuniga
Kelly Eden: Well, my old landlord loved it! I have yet to have a conversation with my new landlord. So let’s keep it a secret so I don’t give him a heart attack…