What’s going on introduce yourself to the people
Hello everyone, my name is Elise Swopes. I’m a 27-year-old freelance artist specializing in design and photography.
How was life growing up?
Life growing up was good. I was born and raised in St. Paul Minnesota and moved to Gurnee around two years old and I did the rest of my upbringing there. My childhood was creatively open. Both of my parents would provide me with technology, which pushed me to start creating at a young age.
When did you begin to witness your creative talents?
I started designing around 10-11 years old. Right away I fell in love with designing and I knew this is what I wanted to do. When I first started designing I started with Kid Pix until my Dad provided me with Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop.
Once you moved to Chicago, did you begin to witness a boost in your creativity?
Absolutely. I was able to meet and constantly surround myself with many people who were creative and involved with Art/Music. My first intro to the Chicago creative scene was designing album covers and flyers for rappers and musicians.
You once tweeted that the winter is your favorite time of the year for creativity. Why is that?
Summer is nice and everything, but it’s the time to have fun and be outside. There’s something really cool and desolate about a snowstorm. When you come downtown there are people everywhere, everything is congested, but when it comes down to a snowstorm, nobody is outside. I think there’s a beauty to that.
You touched on when you got into design earlier, when did you start getting into photography?
I got into Photography at the end of 2010 going into 2011. My first introduction to photography was through Instagram. I started taking pictures with my phone and fell in love with it. A little over two years ago is when I bought my first camera, which was a Canon 6d.
What’s your favorite part about capturing a moment?
My favorite part is showing the moment to people. The reaction of people is the biggest thing to me. I love seeing how people enjoy and interpret Art.
Do you think your imagination is a critical component to your talents?
100%. I think that’s the reason why brands are willing to reach out to me to work with them. I’m always looking at it from a brand or marketing perspective. Thinking about what’s going to go viral and how people are going to think is how I create my designs.
Recently got to partner with Kellogg’s Tony The Tiger for their “Let Your Great Out Campaign”. How did that come about?
I was reached out via e-mail by Kellogg’s, which was then followed by a phone call with the people involved. The concept behind this campaign is Tony The Tiger is going around the United States and meeting these influencers in each major city. The influencers then begin to show Tony how they create in their city. Tony had been to New York, LA, and now Chicago was going to be his last stop with me. We scheduled February 9th to be our shoot day in Chicago. As soon as we woke up, we had our new Cinnamon Frosted Flakes and hit downtown to start doing some videography. It started with Tony and I running around Chicago and ended at our final destination, which was The John Hancock Observatory.
Lets take it back to the beginning of your Instagram Presence. What were you posting first? Did you always take it seriously and when did you begin to witness a following?
My journey started in 2010 with posting normal photos consisting of selfies, cat photos, and macaroni & cheese. When I first started posting on Instagram it was all for fun, but then it got serious when more apps like Snapseed and others were dropping, generating more creative opportunities on Instagram. Eventually Instagram put me on the Suggested User list in 2012, which brought me in thousands and thousands of followers.
Since that first post there has clearly been no slowing down, you’ve been able to travel all over the world. Tell us about those experiences, where has been your favorite place you’ve been to?
I’ve been fortunate enough to travel to so many places. Tokyo, Dubai, Costa Rica, Switzerland, and Hungary are places I’ve been able to experience. If I could pick a favorite, it would’ve been Costa Rica.
Throughout the years, what has Art taught you? Also what continues to inspire you?
The greatest thing I’ve taken away from it is being able to inspire people. I love myself and I love what I do, but I also enjoy seeing people recreate what I do or even just push themselves further in what they want to do. If I’ve taken anything away from anything I’ve done, I just want people to feel happy, confident, and cool with their Art.
You’ve also been shedding a lot more positivity these past few months. Just how important is it living a positive lifestyle?
Positivity and being healthy is very important. There is a deep place you can go when it comes to making a lot of money and partying. Once you get through that phase you just want to be happy, healthy, and positive. I’ve noticed a huge change in my life from trying to please others to beginning to please my family and myself.
When it’s all said and done how would you like to be remembered
I want to be remembered as someone who had a different view of what reality was always showing us. There are bigger things than all of this and there’s something beautiful in knowing that. I also want people to remember me for making people feel good about themselves, being kind, and generous.
Written By: Nicholas Rud