Kelly Eden has lived a life worthy of the kind of art that she seeks to make: dramatic, layered, vibrant, and unexpectedly meaningful. She fell in love with oil paints at the age of 17, when she enrolled in the Denver School of the Arts. She was there only briefly before graduating and heading to the Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design. There, she honed her skills both as a painter and, in a way, as a painting: she modeled for her fellow artists and designed a very effective social-media presence for herself. That online presence, in fact, was so compelling that it soon went viral, drawing an enormous amount of attention to Kelly and her work. As an alternative model, she graced magazine covers and generated a lot of interest in the “tattoo pastel” aesthetic that she represented at the time. Multiple magazine spreads featured an interesting double feature: Kelly’s paintings, alongside photographs of Kelly herself. She was able to parlay her artistic fame into an “influencer” role and a successful YouTube channel. After nearly ten years of that life, though… the constant stress, self-doubt, and online abuse coming Kelly’s way absolutely forced her to leave it behind. Eventually, with a new appreciation for therapy, she began to rediscover her partially neglected first love: painting. Now, she uses paint to give form to the ideas—both good and bad—that have filled her life with self-compelling significance.