No seriously, her work has been seen in goodie bags at the Emmy's, New York Fashion week and is currently in homes around the globe. We are oh-so-lucky to have Catherine McDonald in house at Kess. Although her work is exquisite, her person beauty, inside and out is just as jaw dropping. She brings a soul and passion for artwork that is unsurpassed. She believes in supporting her fellow artists. She is an example of pay it forward that I am so happy I was exposed to. A Kat of all trades, she is an amazing writer which is why, I opted to include a large portion of our facebook interview... She is currently 3 days into a two-year exploration of Korea with her family. We wish her well and we can't wait to see Korea through her lens and on our pillows. Getting to know this woman was more than a perk, it was a privilege. I love her, I love her work. Check it out and please read below. It's an excellent glimpse into a gorgeous heart. Please enjoy the read. It's a goodie.
KIH: When did you realize this is what you wanted to do?
Katy McDonald: I've always been drawn to Photography, even as a kid with my first point and shoot painstakingly earned through a school fundraiser. I would walk through the woods and the fields of Rural Southern Georgia, shooting absolutely everything. Mama never complained - she just kept developing the film & buying more. Later, as a teenager, I moved in with my Aunt & Uncle, and was exposed to Photography in a new way - via the photos in my Uncle's National Geographic magazines & the amazing photojournalism in my Aunt's Time & Newsweek Magazines. Back then in the rural South, before the internet, before the connectivity we have today - you'd see these things and think "How amazing is this!? I wish I could do this! I wish I could be a Photographer! I wish I could capture these emotions!" Even though, deep down inside, you sort of think that maybe it's not so practical & only a pipe dream. At some point in the mid 2000s while living in Europe, I decided to pursue Photography. I studied, I read, I took classes. I absorbed as much as possible. When we returned Stateside, I opened my first Photography business.
KIH: Describe the most recent time you got teared up?
Katy McDonald: In the mornings before work the first thing I do is check the latest news stories. There was a photo essay attached to a story on the conflict in Syria that made my heart ache.
KIH: Which artist is your best inspiration?
Katy McDonald: You know, this is tough. The artwork that I admire is different from the type of artwork that I actually do. The Photojournalists on the front lines, and the artists who use Socio-Political issues in their work are what really & truly move me. Recently, I discovered Dina Goldstein's work and absolutely loved it. Also, I would be absolutely remiss if I did not mention Rob Futrell or Dusti Stoneman. Google them. He's a Portrait Photographer in St Augustine, FL. and she does Birth Photography in Savannah, Ga. Both of them do SUCH amazing work. The emotions that Dusti captures are just so palpable. She amazes me.
KIH: How has your lifestyle affected your work?
Katy McDonald: We move around a lot due to my husband's career. It's taken us to Europe, all over the US and now Asia. It's tough being away from our families, particularly with young children; however, it's opened our eyes to so much, and professionally speaking, given me so much material to work with. I am never in want of things to shoot. My life never really gets boring!
KIH: What is your favorite part of being on Kess?
Katy McDonald: Truthfully, I have to say the relationships with the other artists. There are so many talented people on board - but also, so many truly wonderful people. For instance, recently, I had trouble trying to get my dogs, who are like my babies, into Korea. It was a fellow KESS artist who was able to connect me with someone who ended up helping me!
KIH: Tell me about your chillins?
Katy McDonald: My daughter is 12, and one of the kindest, thoughtful, most soft hearted people I know. She always wants to help people and has this wonderful artistic spirit that I encourage as much as possible. She will create things, even out of small things - like gum wrappers or paper napkins from dinner. My son is wild, and fiery with a photographic memory and so, so smart. He remembers absolutely everything - so you absolutely cannot get away with anything with him! He also gives the best sugar and is the best snuggler I've ever known. I got really lucky with my 2 - they really are such great children. They make me so proud!
KIH: What is your current favorite color? It depends.
Katy McDonald: For the longest time, it was blue - aqua, teal, turquoise. The colors of the sea. Lately, however, I've been leaning towards green. I'm not sure if that's the Pantone influence this year, or if it's because it's the color of life and a color I long for in the dead of winter. I am so happy in the Spring & Summer when the trees are filled with lush green leaves.
KIH: What is your favorite season?
Katy McDonald: Fall. Definitely fall! Leaves change to beautiful colors. Everyone moves indoors. Fireplaces are lit. Marshmallows are roasted. We had a fireplace in our kitchen in our last house - and our favorite thing to do was make smores and roast marshmallows. As a matter of fact, the neighborhood children used to come to my house and ask if we could roast marshmallows. It was sort of our thing!X