rally podcast S1 EP07

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The Rally Podcast S1 EP07

Marissa Raglin: Welcome to the rally podcast. I’m Marissa Raglin.

Josh Vaughn: I’m Josh Vaughn and we are the co-founders of Rally. We are all about cultivating community through creativity. We explore creative communities and the communal landscapes they foster.

Marissa Raglin: Today, we come to you from Studio Six, located in the Paseo Arts District in Oklahoma City.

Welcome to my studio.

Josh Vaughn: We are honored to have our friend Katelynn Noel Knick with us on the podcast. Katelynn is a multidisciplinary OKC based artist and founder of Art Friends, a national platform dedicated to supporting emerging artists through community, support, and growth. Welcome to the podcast, Katelynn.

Katelynn Noel Knick: Hey, Hey.

Josh Vaughn: It’s always so much fun to have friends on the show.

I think all of us met at ArtistINC OKC 2015. What was that experience like? Did you discover anything new about the creative community in OKC?

Katelynn Noel Knick: Hello.

Honestly, wild to think about the, we all met seven years ago through art ArtistINC. Yeah. And I think that opportunity was really helpful for everyone involved, but especially myself. I had just graduated art school in 2015 in May. I did that program that fall. So for me, it was like a big confidence booster, like ending with the pecha kucha at the end and the

Josh Vaughn: what were they calling it?

Katelynn Noel Knick: Yes. Yeah, but that was really my first artist talk. That was just like, such a, yeah. Kind of like rip the band aid off experience or on public speaking. So, yeah, I think what I really discovered. During that experience is how welcoming and unique and diverse our Oklahoma City, our community really is.

So at that time I was living in Norman and I really had only really known like my art community in our schools. So, which is very insular and just, uh, very separate from like the greater community. So that was really like a bridge experience that introduced me to all of you. And so many, like. Just diverse creative people, right?

Like comedians, musicians, dancers, writers, visual artists, and seeing how we all can work together and continue to work together. Now, seven years later. And I think it was just like, it opened up the door to possibility. That’s what I really got from that experience.

Marissa Raglin: I was just going to say, did, do you think it excited you for collaboration or did it give you tools to set off as a solo artist?

Katelynn Noel Knick: I think, I think both, I think it made me realize where I needed to grow personally and really think about that like how all of us play a role and we’re not competitive and we are collaborative. And so I think that was a big growing experience. Like, yes, I can have the tools to go off on my own now, but I also have the tools to work together and the mindset to work together.

Josh Vaughn: Yeah. And I, I think working together with other people makes you better in your solo work too. I mean, that’s yeah, I would not be a 10th of the artists that I’ve, that I am today. I’m not like this great artists, but I’m, I’m confident. I know how to do my craft and I enjoy it and know how to improve it.

Only because of, you know, people, you know, like ya’ll and many others who have just invested in me. They give you confidence. They give you tips. They also give you great criticism. Like, oh man, that, that’s so crap, you probably don’t want to do that or whatever. Uh, and so yeah, definitely ArtistINC for me, one thing that surprised me the most was look at what those people are doing right now is it is crazy.

I mean, people who don’t know what the ArtistINC experience was I’ve hopefully it comes back to Oklahoma city sometime because, those people are the ones doing big stuff all over and together and collaborations. I mean, it’s just,

Marissa Raglin: It was definitely an incubator, right. It just seemed like at peak time that it served a really great purpose to help elevate all artists who were a part of it.

Yeah. Shout out to ArtistINC and we want to see you back here in OKC.

Josh Vaughn: What is it going to take?

Marissa Raglin: Yeah.

Katelynn your art is so inviting and comforting. I’ve heard you speak of creating from a place of whimsical play and joy. What is your creative process and how do you approach your painting?

Katelynn Noel Knick: Thank you for saying that, you know, I think it’s ever evolving and hearing that question and like, thinking about just like the whimsical, joy and play and seeing it now from this perspective, like.

I’m kind of transitioning into like, yes, it’s whimsical still. But I think like, as I have grown as an artist and as a person it’s developing into more like deeper feelings, right? Like, especially growing, even from. Recently with like my sister’s death and like really feeling like the opposite of whimsical, joy and play, and like the deepest, darkest feelings, like truly knowing grief and like bringing that into my work now.

And just like, feeling like the full kaleidoscope of emotions and turning that energy in, transmuting it into a physical, tangible thing that other people can not only see, but feel like on a soul level like that. I just got goosebumps talking about it, but that’s, that’s in the, it’s like the key. I think that is what I think my work is about is connecting on that soul level and definitely, um, like my soul to yours.

Marissa Raglin: Yeah. The process, it seems like, like you navigate and you. You’re so present in the process of creating a work I’m interested in say like, do you ever find yourself stuck in the messy middle with a painting and just, you can’t quite push through that emotion or push and find an ending?

Katelynn Noel Knick: Yes. I often get stuck.

I’m feeling that now, like with work, I started, sometimes it takes me months to take it back up and work through it. It’s so easy just to get stuck. I think, as we work through those emotions and that phase, our work comes along with us. Yeah. Eventually I will always pick it back up and finish it, but you know, sometimes, maybe it’s years later, sometimes it’s months later.

So, but yeah, it’s definitely a process for sure.

Josh Vaughn: I think that you touched on something is really deep. Why do artists make stuff? And it’s touching on. There’s this there’s incommunicable things inside of us that are deeper than our mind and our body and, and our emotions. There’s things that we can’t communicate any other way than putting our pen to paper or paintbrush to a canvas.

And, and I believe that’s why art is so moving and. Because you put in you’ll you’ll emote and put into your work things that don’t have to do with the composition that I can’t explain it. That’s like you look at a Rothko and you find your Rothko and you, you don’t want to move. I mean, that’s, there’s emotions, there’s pain, there’s happiness and there’s discomfort.

And. Complete comfort all at the same time sometimes. And, uh, it’s just, it’s kind of like, it’s the, it’s your, your S your soul communicating with other people. And when people get on that wavelength, it’s, it’s huge. And so I actually think that by you being able to process all. Everything around you. I mean, you’ll just become a, an artist.

The touch touches even more people. I mean, that’s, that’s, that’s what I see. So

Katelynn Noel Knick: Thank you for saying that. I think, um, it’s kind of like our job as artists. Like we’re, you know, we’re called to express and not everyone, like is as brave and like what, like they all have it, but maybe they aren’t able to find that expression yet.

And I think what we do as artists is we give them permission. We invite them in and we guide them. We guide them through that.

Josh Vaughn: Yeah. Uh, one of the things I’ve heard explained was it was Makoto Fujimura. About the word he uses. I think I know I’m going to butcher this word because it’s like some Norwegian word there mearcstapas I think is what it was, but it actually came out of a Beowulf and it was about these border stalkers.

These people who were, who were in-between, they weren’t at the center of the camp. They were at the edge, but they were the people who had contact with, with people outside the camp. And they were able to bring culture in and to take culture out. And he, he says, that’s the job of artists is, is they, they bring messages in and, and culture in and bring it out.

And. Even though they may not be accepted by the mainstream. They’re able to move in and out. And they kind of seamlessly fade into whatever area they need to, and they are bringing, they are conduits and bringing messages and bringing, you know, their energy, new thoughts, you know, whatever new culture to, to everyone through being that kind of almost an outsider.

Marissa Raglin: That gave me chills!

What is a day in the life of the studio of Katelynn Noel Knick look like?

Katelynn Noel Knick: Thank you. Um, I think that my creative process starts with my spiritual practice and it starts with my journal, right? Like just getting. Yeah, like in the in reclaiming my own presence and voice that day, how I’m feeling and tuning in.

And then from there, if it is a studio day, if it’s time to paint, then yeah. It’s time to paint. I usually do like a clearing I’ll make space because it is, so my work is tends to be so large or. I, I very though, like if it’s tiny paintings or drawings or whatever it calls for that day, um, I make space for it.

Like today, for example, I was inspired. I was inspired to do it for this. I mean, this rally show that’s coming up, but just to really feel in the flow again. Be in that moment of flow, so made space. And then I usually start with, if it’s a brand new painting, I’ll start with laying down some color and sanding.

I do a lot of layers and building up on the surface. One thing that I love to use. Is a watercolor pencils because they are so versatile. So you can use it as colored pencils, but you can also play with that watercolor effect. So by incorporating painting with it, it kind of has this like, like blended beautiful, transparent. Aspect to it. So that’s what you see a lot in my work. And that’s how I get that watercolor acrylic blend, um, which I enjoy. I love how it can change on the canvas and change throughout the process.

Josh Vaughn: So I will say in your current and your, your current body of work for the last several years, And an iconic stamp of are those embellishments like that.

Marissa Raglin: Yeah, the fluidity. And I see a lot of blue on your work. Yes. Would you say that’s a favorite color?

Katelynn Noel Knick: It definitely is. Yes. A sky blue. I think it’s just so encompassing and. Freeing. And, uh, every time if I just sit down and go to make a color it’s sky bluee.

Josh Vaughn: Yeah. And I know that sounds weird, but for me, I associate that with circles now because of your work, because you have so many circles and so much blue and so many of your works and so peaceful.

So it’s weird. It’s like a frenetic energy. You feel like the paintings it’s peaceful, but it also feels like it’s vibrating at the same time and about to just like. Take over the whole room, you know, I really enjoy that.

Katelynn Noel Knick: I think it’s a balance. between the both. Yeah.

Josh Vaughn: Uh, what sort of interaction are you typically trying to foster with your art?

Katelynn Noel Knick: I think I really just want my work to grab people and like the most loving, like, welcoming hug. Welcome them into my energy, but also connect with theirs. And that’s the interaction I want. I want people to feel, feel like in that moment and in the moment of the work and connect to that space we’re creating between me and the audience.

And I think of it as like a personal little meditation, like between me and the viewer and, uh, letting them in on, into my space, but sharing their space with me as well. So I think it’s, I think it’s a deep connection.

Marissa Raglin: Let’s talk about a couple of your current projects starting off with the Sunny Dayz Mural Festival, you were in the inaugural exhibition in 2021.

Tell us about the festival, what your involvement is this year and what the experience has been like.

Katelynn Noel Knick: Yes, I love Sunny Dayz. So thank you for asking. So I was invited to be on the committee, the founding committee to help launch it. And it was spearheaded by my good collaborator friend, Virginia Sitzes and I was also gratefully included in the, the lineup.

So I was able to do a mural as well last year, but it was a joy and it’s a joy to be a part of a initiative that is also welcoming and also community building. And it’s like, everything you wished was in a mural festival is what happened. Like community building events, leading out the community building like within the week of the event, like between the artists and the, the location that we were in the district, everyone had a role and everyone I was welcomed into that role. And I think the committee and Virginia just did an amazing job at showing what’s possible. This year, I am also on the committee again and here for round two. So yeah, we’re kicking it into gear. We just did our artists selection. We’re working on fundraising. Um, we have a beautiful location.

I think it’s going to be, uh, a really stellar festival.

Marissa Raglin: Oh, wow. What are the dates for that again?

Katelynn Noel Knick: It’s August six. Yeah. So Sunny Dayz is a very intentional mural festival that. Invites in women and non-binary artists to create their murals in a community of other women and non-binary artists. So that’s key and not, not only does it focus on that under represented minority, especially in the mural community and locally, it also invites.

Uh, 20% of the walls will be dedicated to and are dedicated to first-time painters, first-time muralist. Which, as a muralist, I fully support because getting that first mural and Josh knows this is a challenge. And, uh, it’s very hard. You face a lot of barriers. It’s so frustrating and to be able to be an organization that supports that and offers that space for first time, muralist is radical in its being and to see and build that community with that emerging muralist and see their growth after the festival, the, um, the work they get, the opportunities they get from having that first wall is real and it’s impactful. The impact is there, but even Josh, even like the confidence from that first mural to my, I mean, that was huge. It took me, I was, I remember feeling so timid to paint that wall and like, it really did take me like eight hours, like to paint a tiny wall.

And like, it took me a week to paint a 65 foot wall, like the growth from that moment. It’s real. Like, so yeah.

Josh Vaughn: I think that all that growth is really internal. I think a lot of it was giving yourself license to do that. Even though you’re not necessarily getting licensed from everyone else to be able to do that once and then be able to say, okay, now I’ve got this wall.

I got this

Katelynn Noel Knick: It’s the permission. Yeah. Yep.

Marissa Raglin: So your first mural was at the gallery space in Goldsby that you made.

Katelynn Noel Knick: Okay. Awesome.

Marissa Raglin: Okay. I didn’t realize it didn’t make the connection.

Josh Vaughn: It really wasn’t. It wasn’t huge, but it was what I had to offer. So there was a wall that wrapped around that. Two doors. And I do remember this and she painted all the places in between the doors and then, but then it wrapped around too.

It was beautiful. I loved it because whenever we first walked in, it just drew you through the entire space because there was something on that wall with all the gray walls. There was something on that wall that was, that was energetic. It was a hundred percent Katelynn and you’re just like, it kind of made the whole space, like one big piece.

Katelynn Noel Knick: That’s the power of murals. Exactly. That’s exactly right. Yeah. I love murals for that effect, especially I love seeing my own work in that scale because it does that. It flows the space. It really does add, add a lot to it.

Josh Vaughn: Yeah. And I fully believe that your work, the bigger it gets, the better it gets. So it’s because you look at the small ones, you’re just like, I want to climb inside that.

And then you’re like, I might be able to fit in this one. That’s like, you know, life-size, I’m going to see a Katelynn mural, the size of the side of a building, a parking garage as something I think it would be. Oh, it would brighten everybody’s day and they would just love it. So

Katelynn Noel Knick: That’s the goal honestly, is like, if you were to ask me what my ideal art like 10 years from now, five years from now, like what type of art, but I would be making it’s that like that.

That’s what I do now. That’s what I’m striving for. Like, is that immersive, like, let me climb into this space and you know, I’m, I am diving into different ways to bring that to creation. So including murals and maybe some collaborations.

Josh Vaughn: That’s awesome. If anybody has a multi-story building that they want a mural on and they will let Katelynn do it.

Get ahold of her. Yes.

Marissa Raglin: Yes. Oh, Katelynn can I talk about the piece that I have, of course, which is made of milk cartons, plastic melted plastic, melted plastic, like first work of art in my art collection at home is a Katelynn Knick and it’s got mixed media.

Katelynn Noel Knick: It’s like you have a coffee filter on. I have a coffee filter on old school.

Josh Vaughn: Old school is that is, yeah. I have a little mini one with the foam on it. So she was doing foam, cutouts and stuff and yeah,

Katelynn Noel Knick: I fell in love with them. Y’all got some experimental, the good stuff. Last time I

Marissa Raglin: saw your work though, was just prior to that momentum, Tulsa. I like walk around and I see these like, stalactite slag might like collections of, of these organic forms attached to the wall and around the corner. And I’m like just, I couldn’t place like what the material was. And so it was so exciting to learn and then even see your process evolve now. Of the exploration of the media, of the technique, how the fluidity of something like melting jugs and wearing a mask to protect yourself. But then also like being up close with a delicate and like whimsical painting.

It’s this is just me fan girling,

Josh Vaughn: My curiosity. So did you buy that? Was that pre-artistINC piece?.

Katelynn Noel Knick: It was around that time, 2015, 2016.

Josh Vaughn: Did you know Katelynn yet, when you bought that piece.

Marissa Raglin: No, but I remember like somehow inquiring, like what is this made of?

Katelynn Noel Knick: Yeah, that, that was the driving factor. I was really interested. That’s what brought about the inflatable pieces was that, you know, it was like that drive to bring this flowy colorful painting into reality. How can we bring it in and really connect and like a tangible way? And it was like giving materiality to that essence of painting.

And so I really loved the aspect of using everyday materials. So like coffee filters that I painted and dipped in wax because it did transform them and it obscured them and it made people wonder, like, what is it? And like, why is it grabbing.

Marissa Raglin: Yeah, I want to touch it. I want to climb inside it.

Josh Vaughn: Yeah, man, we could, you could have a whole book on that of art and why is it the why is, it is the most important question that we could ask about art. You know, why does it make me feel this way? It’s frigging coffee filter with wax on it, but it moves me or it’s this. Or like I mentioned earlier, like a Rothko is it’s paint on a canvas and it’s layers and layers and layers, but. Why is the drawing me in that is sorry.

That’s a rabbit trail there that I think we can follow forever.

Katelynn Noel Knick: That’s how, you know, we’re all artists,

Josh Vaughn: I can already tell this is going to be a long podcasts because we’re just all just like, Artists!

Art Friends, we all need them. You founded, a national artist community named just that. And you share a bit about Art Friends and its purpose.

Katelynn Noel Knick: Art Friends feels like the answer to everything I was looking for for the last three, four or five years. Like I feel so grateful that it exists, but I had all the, you know, the path to creating it opened up and that I was able to bring it into fruition because it is so serving and it serves me in, it serves the community and it’s building community, right?

Like, so Art Friends is a platform for emerging artists and it’s there for artists to feel connected and it’s there for them to feel supported. Yeah. They can grow on their own, like their own path and realize that the world is there for them. And that, you know, like through support and community and connection, they can literally do anything.

And that’s what I really want is for emerging artists, especially to feel empowered and to feel like they have the resources they need. I think so much about that about feeling empowered is finding your connection to not only your confidence, but to the resources that are already available to you in feeling empowered enough to make that connection and just step into their own power.

And so. I, when I developed Art Friends, I wanted it to be online so I could access artists anywhere. So that’s what I was hungry for is not only, you know, our beautiful community here, but expansion, like how can we connect to artists in Oklahoma City to artists elsewhere? And I think that’s something that Oklahoma city needs and the Oklahoma needs our artists need, but also, why not build that network bigger. And how can we foster that without artists leaving the state? How can we foster it online with the resources available and, um, It’s really just building that web, that web, that already exists and expanding it. And so our friends is that for me, it’s my answer to that. It brings in everything I’m interested in, but I think that also like is helpful for artists.

Like if we focus on mindset, we focus on career support, just sharing your art, building confidence in what you’re making and sharing it in record. We have a whole online community on discord that has a lot of opportunities for artists to share resources, opportunities that like applications for them to apply for residencies, they share their art, what they’re working on, maybe something that they don’t post online.

Like that’s the juicy stuff, right. That we get to share within our like safe community that we’re building. Um, they can ask for feedback on their work. They can meet artists all across the country and connect, and I think it’s really beautiful and I’m grateful to be a part of it and to found it and bring it into fruition.

Josh Vaughn: So what has it brought, that’s been unexpected to you, like you, you wanted to do this, then after it gets going, you’re you realize that it’s bringing something you didn’t even know you need it. Is there anything like that, that, that has happened?

Katelynn Noel Knick: I think the most surprising thing for me about Art Friend is how many artists have joined that I did not know previously.

And, uh, you think like when you start a pro like a program or platform like this, that it’s your community, that’s going to like your immediate people that you know, who are going to join. I did not know many, most of the people who joined and that showed me that the need is there and that it’s, that I can attract it.

And that all I have to do is literally build it and they will come. Like that phrase came to mind because. So many people who I didn’t know before came because they needed that. And it’s a lot of people who don’t ha are not plugged into the art community who are looking for that who feel isolated and who feel like they’re not really sure about claiming artists or they’re used to, they claim artists, but they, you know, they haven’t done it in a while or maybe they’re full-time artists.

And they’re just like, I want to be a part of this. Like it’s such a very diverse group. And they all just came.

Josh Vaughn: If someone was listening and they wanted me to become part of art friends, how do they do it?

Katelynn Noel Knick: Yes. So, uh, they can go to the website, artfriendsforever.com and click on membership. It describes the different options that are available to them.

We have a community option. That’s just the online discord and they get to attend the art talks. Then there’s also a community classes options. So they, with that tier. And access to the monthly classes, um, which are super awesome. They are with different people. Like last month we had a person talk about she’s a, like a witch and a coach and she came in to talk about rest the magic of rest.

So it’s really interesting. And I’m like, yeah. So. With the community and classes here, they also get access to a digital library of all the recordings of the art talks in all the classes. So, yeah. Um,

Josh Vaughn: that’s cool. That’s very cool.

Katelynn Noel Knick: Yeah. I love. I think as an artist, I love, uh, studying and like, I love attending workshops and I love, uh, meeting new people and just like diving deeper into like that learning that doesn’t really happen outside of school.

Like the art school atmosphere and, you know, like where can you go to meet up with the same people, like learn together and grow together. And that’s what art friends really is, is like that community of people who are saying yes. Yes.

Marissa Raglin: So if you had say, you know, your top two, you know, big dream workshops, like who would it be? What would it be about?

Katelynn Noel Knick: I feel like we’re living the dream already. I am so jazzed about giving and like that’s the whole magic about that platform is giving people opportunities to be teachers. And like, because I understand like the confidence that comes from being a leader and like being able to share that and invite someone else on that platform.

I think that peer-to-peer learning is so powerful and so empowering.

Josh Vaughn: So the peer-to-peer teaching and giving them that opportunity is that’s something that’s lacking. I think in not just in the art world but then life in general is people want you to show up with all your experiences from somewhere else, but there’s, there is so much that is the peer to peer learning that is not offered and as invaluable that we don’t have.

And I’m glad that y’all are offering that.

Katelynn Noel Knick: Yes. Yeah. I’d say it really does take someone to see that and give you that permission and invite you to step into that role. Yes.

Marissa Raglin: What is your origin story? At what inflection point did you identify as an artist and how did that make you feel?

Katelynn Noel Knick: I feel like I’ve always known artists from the get-go and I’m.

So I actually come from a family of creative people. So my grandpa was an artist and had a studio where he taught. Uh, students, he published a book. He did a lot of contract work for the government. And, uh, I just always knew that art was in our family. And I think when you grow up with that, you claim it.

And, um, so it wasn’t like a fantasy. Like it’s a, it’s a reality that you, every time we went to like our grandparents house, like we see it, we see his art we see now. And like even the women in my family made, they were always makers and like either quilts or baskets or, you know, it’s creativity was there and same with my father and they just encouraged it early on.

And that was, I think, as a kid, like where I found my joy was through making and also through like escapism. Like I always went to art and, uh, it was, I just realized very early on that it was, was so important to me and I don’t think I’ve ever questioned it. And so pursuing it through school, through high school, I had a phenomenal art teacher in high school, and she’s the one who really taught me that not only is it fun, but it’s healing and it’s powerful and you can, and it’s also serious.

Like this is a real. The real deal career, babe. And like, from there I went to art school and I just, I just feel like I committed ever since, and I don’t think there’s any other thing I could be doing. Like that’s how it feels. Um,

Marissa Raglin: I am curious what your family said when, when you were like, oh, I’m going to art school. Like, um, I want to study art?

Katelynn Noel Knick: I mean, so even though they are creative people, they also understood the challenges. And, uh, I think they weren’t super enthused. They also knew that I was very determined and they knew that I was going to do whatever I wanted and what I wanted was to be an artist. And if they disapproved, it was only going to fuel my fire.

Marissa Raglin: That’s great. We love talking to strangers, but like there’s some serious comfort when you have history with people and you actually get to… one of my favorite things to ask Julia, and maybe I’ll ask you as well as, you know, what was little Katelynn like, it’s like my favorite question now.

Katelynn Noel Knick: That’s so sweet.

Little Katelynn was very, um, she was like very loud. She loved the sound of her own voice. And, uh, I just remember, and there’s videos of like me just singing. Like you will hear me now. I am joyful. She was also, uh, very bossy. Okay. I’m bringing her back, you know.

Marissa Raglin: I like that channeling little Katelynn, not so little anymore.

Katelynn Noel Knick: That’s great. So. You mentioned art throughout high school, but any other passions long way that may be helped form you? Um, so are you, this is kind of a Katelynn fun fact. So I was very into Girl Scouts. So I joined like really kind of later on like in fourth or fifth grade and I fell in love. Like I loved everything about.

Loved earning badges and like doing activities like camping and learning, like survival school. I was really into it. And my first, my first job was at a girl scout camp as like a dishwasher. And I ended up getting to go to camp like through working there. And it was not only a lifesaver for me personally in that time , but really instilled in me confidence and the skills I needed to know to like go on in this life as a confident, empowered, like scout. Really. So. That’s how I would say a side passion.

Josh Vaughn: I did not know that. That’s awesome.

Katelynn Noel Knick: Yeah. It’s um, it’s kind of like, uh, like people kind of make fun of it. I think because I continued until I was like 18. Like I never quit and

Josh Vaughn: Can you please leave?

Katelynn Noel Knick: And there’s like adult girl Scouts. I didn’t go that far, but I, yeah, I like found my family, like in Girl Scouts.

Josh Vaughn: Love that. Yeah. So

Marissa Raglin: Shout out to Girl Scouts

Josh Vaughn: Become Katelynn sponsor, support art friends. Thank you. So what is your biggest challenge as an artist?

Katelynn Noel Knick: I mean, I feel like I’m not alone in saying this, but I feel like we all, I personally feel isolated even in like today’s world where we feel like we have such immediate access to other people and like opportunities and inspiration.

Like it’s so easy to feel isolated. And I think especially post pandemic. You know, not quite post pandemic, like still in it, but it’s it’s that isolation is real. And I think that isolation is what drove me to start Art Friends, but also to. I mean, just like actively seek answers to that. And I think even, you know, like I know this is a local, like a local art initiative building local community, but like, it feels isolating sometimes to not have immediate access to resources outside of the state. And I think that’s my biggest challenge right now is finding collectors, finding opportunities that I, that feel expansive. And I think it’s one thing to find the beauty in our local atmosphere and environment, but something about me has that wanderlust and that thirst for expansion and just a even not only just with collectors, but with just opportunities that feel stretchy. Yeah. I low key thing. It’s my Sagittarius sign, that’s, uh, that wants to travel, wants to grow and it’s all about like goals and expansion and yeah. So I, I feel very thirsty for that. That’s my biggest challenge right now is like how to, okay.

Like, I’m good here, but how do I keep growing?

Marissa Raglin: Where would you like to see the Oklahoma City art community in say five years?

Katelynn Noel Knick: I want to see it grow. I mean, in, in ways that like areas that have not been met yet, like for example, studio spaces like this, we need more of that fully to have that community of artists together.

It’s one thing to have a studio that’s in a isolated building. Like you got the basement or like to have a home studio, but what we really need is more artists together to have a shared studio space with individual spaces. Like, like the one here at Studio Six and like, I’ve seen it done so well elsewhere.

And I’m like, y’all bring this here. Like, where’s our like our funders, that’s bring this. My husband, Sean and I went to Austin and we went to a studio tour and I kid you not, it was like number 324 of this studio tour. That means there’s 323 other studios on this tour before this. And it had about 50 artists, like in this building. It had a gallery, it had a wood shop, like everything was there and it was so like, thriving. And like, they were all, so just like you could just feel it, like, I felt inspired being there, like going into all the little spaces and seeing how they transform their space and they had their own ideas and offers and like creations and seeing how they connect with the person next to them.

And it, I was like, I want that here. Like yeah. Here. I want that here so bad. And, uh, I don’t see it and I haven’t seen it and I’ve seen them start and then not get the support. And I would love to see that happen in five years. And that is what I mean, I’ll sign up, like hit me up if that happens, but I’m ready.


Josh Vaughn: Imagine the collaborations that come out of that place and they would never have overlapped otherwise I think that. That’s cool.

Marissa Raglin: Well, let’s, you know, I, I witnessed that here in the studio is, is that a lot of times things just happened by like, what feels like osmosis that just being near them, I’m picking up techniques or media, even. You know, I partnered up in collaborated with Mikie and gave her some dried plants and she incorporated that into her encaustic works. And so we each kind of give each other different things to add to our work. So yeah, that would be incredible to see more opportunities like that. And in Oklahoma city. Yeah.

Josh Vaughn: I think the people in this room right now could make it happen.

Katelynn Noel Knick: Yeah, we just needed a real estate guy.


Josh Vaughn: So at rally, we are constantly advocating for the cultivation and community through creativity. What does that look like to you, Katelynn?

Katelynn Noel Knick: Cultivating community through creativity. I think that I truly believe that. We all bring different skillsets to the table, different perspectives and different strengths.

And whenever you cultivate that, it builds us a truly stronger community. Just like you know, like one single thread compared to a woven rug. Like it only strengthens the community. And I think. When we each contribute to that and get to highlight our, when we get to highlight our skills and bring them together to collaborate and really have that strong network, magic can happen. Right? That’s true. That’s what we’re doing. Like we’re creating more opportunities or creating more visibility, uh, creating more education and inspiration for not only us as the art community, but for the community at large. And I think it’s so impactful and so necessary. And I’m so grateful.

Josh Vaughn: Yeah. No. That’s great. Yeah. That’s very well said. This is the question. Okay. It’s kind of like, our signature question or whatever, but it’s something we are actually are very passionate about with that. It’s been the one question that every single time people surprise us and I, so we, you talking about like one thread versus a woven is like,.

Marissa Raglin: Yeah. My mind goes to,

Josh Vaughn: yeah. And so, yeah, I love that question, but

Katelynn Noel Knick: Yeah, cause I mean, really what we’re doing is treating a larger family.

Josh Vaughn: And th and that’s what we all need, especially today. I mean, today’s world, we need as much fans we can get

Marissa Raglin: Who are three local creatives that inspire you?

Katelynn Noel Knick: Right now, so I just went to Crystal Bridges and saw the art installation by Julia Alpert,, I think Julie Alpert and Andy Arkley and based out of Tulsa are stellar.

Marissa Raglin: They’re the real deal

Katelynn Noel Knick: I mean, I think what they do with abstraction and materiality and craft is so cool. And to see it like from idea to creation, to full-scale installation and to see how they collaborate together as like a, you know, like a husband, wife pair, but also as individual artists, like I’m so inspired by them.

And I am so grateful for like the Tulsa artists fellowship to bring them here. They would be like, who I’m really like excited to see more of. Jaiye Farrell, Josh Farrell. Yeah. I brought him on to talk to Art Friends recently and just seeing and like feeling and interacting with him and experiencing his ideas.

Recently, I went to an art show and he showed me this like 3d printed ball. It was like an orb of his designs and it was just cool, I was called to see in that, but also to see it printed and on fabric and on murals and just to see his own growth, I’m excited to watch him grow and continue to just expand us all through his mediums, but also through like what he’s interested in.

And lastly, I would say Virginia Sitzes. I think as a creative, I think trade is you create other opportunities for other artists is top-notch. I mean, how could I not be inspired by that? And I think for her, like knowing her personally, but also being able to be involved in what she’s creating and, you know, it’s really putting, it’s elevating artists with you. Like, this is what she’s doing through Sunny Dayz, but through her artwork and to call her a friend, like it’s just so sweet and yeah, I’m always inspired by her.

Josh Vaughn: We’d like to thank Katelynn Noel Knick for sharing her time with us. You can also fall along on Instagram at @katelynnnknick and check out her website at katelynnknick.com. Don’t forget to check out Art Friends as well on Instagram at @artfriendsforever and online at artfriendsforever.com. Find this information and much more in our show notes for this episode on our website rallyokc.com.

Marissa Raglin: And of course we want to thank our audience for listening, please like subscribe and share this podcast. If you enjoyed it, you can follow us on Instagram at @rally.up.okc. We’ll be joining you again soon.