In this section, empowered women from around the world show us how they work to achieve their dreams and what it means to be a woman in today’s society.
This week, we feature local artist, Kylie Gentile, who is also the creative director right here at Island by Koa Nani. Born and raised in Maui, HI, Kylie has dedicated her life to painting and creating art wherever she is. She grew up surrounded by art and was strongly influenced by her art-loving family. After receiving an education in graphic design, Kylie has dedicated herself to selling her works on the internet and fostering the growth of local artists from Hawai’i. Influenced by pop art, Hawaii's landscapes, and happy colors, Kylie invites you to discover her world and how her art is largely identified with the unique designs of Island by Koa Nani.
What does art represent in your life?
Kylie: I believe art represents the essence of life itself. To me, it represents everything I see around me and inspires my artwork.
Which local artists or national artists inspire you?
Kylie: I’ve always been inspired by artists who create colorful artwork and portraiture or landscapes of Hawaii. I always loved Andy Warhol and Van Gogh's work, two artists who have different styles of portraiture and landscape. I’m also inspired by local artist Heather Brown who has such a unique style and paints colorful landscapes of Hawaii.
How did your passion for art start?
Kylie: Ever since I was a kid I grew up around artists. My mom and my grandparents were always creating art and they both own art stores in Maui. My mom’s store is By The Bay in Paia, and my grandparents' store is Maui Ocean Arts in Kihei. I always enjoyed art and it expanded into doing performing arts as well.
What are you currently working on?
Kylie: I currently paint custom pet portraits and do custom paintings as well. I also am a singer/songwriter and create my own music and sing.
What are your future goals in terms of your art career?
Kylie: My future goals are to continue creating my artwork and selling it in different stores. I love my job working at Island by Koa Nani as the creative director where I do mostly graphic design work. I will certainly continue doing what I love and hope to grow more in this field. I also want to continue my passion for music and collaborate with other artists as well.
What advice would you give to your younger self?
Kylie: I would have told myself to not worry so much about my art being perfect. I find that many artists including me are perfectionists and sometimes we can overanalyze a single detail or mistake in our artwork. Sometimes it’s letting go to enjoy the process of creating art itself and simply accepting that nothing in life or art will be perfect.
What is your favorite jewelry piece from Island by Koa Nani?
Kylie: I really like the Tiare Gardenia Earrings, Opalite Shooting Star Bangle, and the Opalite Ocean Wave Ring. They all have so much vibrancy and color. Also, the diamonds added are my favorite since that’s my birthstone too.
Get to know her better by following her Instagram account, @kyliesdesigns. Thank you Kylie for sharing with us and for being an exceptional part of our Island by Koa Nani Ohana!