A Psychedelic Escape — Interview with KALI of Evertender Studios


Trippy, psychedelic. These are what come to mind when you see the film photographs taken by KALI (@evertenderstudios), a film photographer, writer, and painter living in California. Her use of experimental film, color, and prisms make her favorite subjects float, distort, and sparkle in a fantasy land crafted by her imagination. It's an expression and an escape of an artist from the physical pain that she endures. Using art as her weapon, it's admirable to see that she's clearly championing this fight.

Credits: evertenderstudios

Hi, Kali. Please introduce yourself to the community!

Sure! I'm 25 years old, and I live in my hometown of Santa Barbara, nestled between the mountains and the sea. I am incurably ill and disabled, and I live in a state of constant pain thanks to my many illnesses. I try to not let my medical issues get the best of me, but a lot of my life has been spent compromising my interests and dreams to put my health first. I am very determined to make the most of my life, even though it is painful, and a huge part of that means creating as much art as possible. I am a deeply empathetic, spiritual person, and I believe in caring for our planet and the many beings that live here. I highly value the time I am able to spend in nature, and when I'm not able to get out into a natural space, I find sanctuary in my garden. I love to grow plants, and I've spent years cultivating a permaculture-inspired gardenscape that is home to many native plants, fruit trees, medicinal herbs, and veggies.

What is Evertender Studios?

Evertender Studios is the name of my brand! It's kind of like the overarching "container" for all of my creative expressions, whether it's photography, painting, writing, or music. I envision growth, and I am excited for the future of my little studio. I chose the name Evertender because I am always in pain, always sore and aching. Eversore just didn't have the same ring to it, and at this point in my life I'm not outwardly angsty enough to rock Everache.

What’s a typical day like for you?

This is the part in which I will probably start to depress most people, so I'll ~try~ to keep it light! My days are generally quite long and fraught with severe physical discomfort, so essentially everything I accomplish is the result of a hard fought battle with pain. I try not to let it stop me from doing what I love, which is going out to shoot!

Credits: evertenderstudios

Most of my afternoons and evenings are spent with my friends at the skatepark - you'll see them in my photos, undoubtedly. They skate, and I shoot. We're lucky to have such a beautiful skatepark, right next to the beach. Literally just a couple of feet away. It's a nice place to be. When I'm not there, I'm in the mountains with my boyfriend Carl, rambling around to the best of my ability. I love being up above the town and the sea, surrounded by all of the native plants and trees. It's so grounding and restorative for me. I love it there. I've taken thousands of photos of these mountains, but I never tire of them, and I'm always surprising myself, finding new views and perspectives. Throughout all of these moments, I am ever grateful to be on my feet and holding my camera, because I know when the day comes to an end I will be faced with the harsh reality of the physical price my adventures cost me. Sometimes I get so caught up in the moment that I will go way too hard, and push my body too far, and end up incapacitating myself for days... but if the photos turned out well, then it's worth it!

Who or what influenced you to pursue film photography?

Film photography was a natural progression for me from digital photography. I liked the tangible nature of it, and once I started to become ill it became clear that most of my other hobbies were no longer accessible to me. Film photography offered me a creative outlet with infinite variables, and that's always been really compatible with how I like to create art. I could no longer play my guitar or draw thanks to neuropathy in my arms and hands, but I could still take photos!

Credits: evertenderstudios

How did you get started in film photography? Do you still remember the first camera you used or the first set of photos you took?

My grandparents, Don & Deirdre Bueche, upon realizing that I was becoming interested in film photography, they gifted me a few of their 35mm cameras from the 1950s and about a dozen rolls of expired film from the late 90s. They set me up to explore this amazing medium, and I am so grateful to them! Thanks to my grandparents, I got my start with Kodak's Signet 35, an adorable little mechanical marvel that takes very soft & ethereal photos. The first set of photos I took with that camera were of my boyfriend, Carl, and the windy bluffs and eucalyptus forests that line Santa Barbara's coast. They're very dear to my heart.

How would you describe your visual style? What are your favorite subjects?

Lately when folks ask me to describe my work I've been calling it "psychedelic photography" which may be a lofty claim, but it's certainly an accurate description for how things end up coming together. I suppose that my work is very colorful and dynamic, a bit trippy, as I try to incorporate as much of the ether realm as possible. The dreaminess, the ether, auras... I do my best to capture the world as I'd like to see it, or rather, I try to reflect on what could be!

Credits: evertenderstudios

As for my favorite subjects... I have always loved the mountains, the way the clouds pass over them, and how the sky changes as the sun sets. I do a lot of landscape photography and I'm starting to get into very earthy self-portraiture, like climbing into little nooks in the hillsides and scrambling to set a self-timer. When I'm not in the mountains I'm at Skater's Point, where my other favorite muses dwell - like my friend Gunnar. He's been one of my favorite people to shoot with over the last year and we've taken some really amazing skate photos together. I shoot whatever inspires me, and I don't follow trends. I think it's really important to stay true to authenticity, so I direct my creative focus on the subjects that genuinely interest me on a deeper level.

What do you wish to convey through your photographs?

I can only hope that my photos inspire a feeling of dreaminess and surreality... It would be nice to transport people somewhere beautiful, especially now that we've all been in various forms of lockdown over the past year. I equate photos to portals, and I use them to travel. Another component of this conjuration is the hope to inspire people to care more deeply for the nature that surrounds them. It's ever-fleeting, and the more we do to protect it, the better. It is my hope that through viewing and enjoying my work, one may develop a deep appreciation and respect for this land and all it has been, and will hopefully continue to be.

Does your photography, writing, and painting influence each other? If so—in what way?

I'd say so. Everything is connected in some way! I suppose I have somewhat of an aesthetic, and it feels nice to see everything come together in such complementary ways, even if it's by coincidence. I'm grateful to be able to practice these different avenues of expression.

Credits: evertenderstudios

As a LomoChrome Purple film user, what do you like most about it?

I LOVE LomoChrome Purple because it turns our typical reality into a wonderland of magical, psychedelic color. I love all of the different expressions of color in this film. It's my favorite film to work with, I've undoubtedly shot thousands of frames with LomoChrome Purple. It's been such a dream to develop my style with this unique film, and I'm very grateful that it's been available to me throughout my career. It just makes me happy!

How important is film photography to you? What does it mean to you?

I've lost a lot of my life over the years, but being able to operate a camera has thankfully remained an accessible creative practice for me. I am so grateful to have film photography as a creative outlet and communication tool! This medium has helped me develop as an artist, it's facilitated amazing friendships and beautiful memories, and it's connected me with a community of supportive people and brands that make me feel seen and appreciated. That's really special and I don't take it for granted.

To see more photos, visit KALI's LomoHome or website, and follow her on Instagram.

written by shhquiet on 2021-07-03 #psychedelic #lomochrome-purple

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  1. acreamer
    acreamer ·

    @evertenderstudios your artwork is truly beautiful and inspiring, thank you for sharing with us

  2. evertenderstudios
    evertenderstudios ·

    Thank you so much! 🙏🏼🙏🏼🙏🏼

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