Art & Skateboarding With Karissa Kaye

Karissa Kaye, known as KK, is a 21 year old artist originally from Colorado, now living in Oceanside California. The majority of her life has been spent on the California coast and she has no intention of ever leaving. Her grandmother, also an artist, helped her find art as an outlet and her greatest form of fun. Originally, art was a hobby for KK.  In 2018, she decided to dive in share her passion with the world. Now that she is marketing herself and selling her art, the process brings her excitement. In her words, “it pushes you to be better than you think you can be.”

Her Waves Interview Karissa Kaye

I love doing oil portraits. I also use acrylics, pen, and ink; especially when doing art on skate decks. I use a big variety, there isn’t a main one I stick to.

Photography by: Kiore Lee

Interview with: Karissa Kaye

Her Waves Interview Karissa Kaye

I go by a quote by Nas, “No Idea’s Original, there’s nothin’ new under the sun. It’s never what you do, but how it’s done.” Point being, everything is art. No one likes it all, you can always compare yourself to other people. It’s what you do, why you do it, how you do it and what’s behind it. That is where my art comes from. It is very mixed and scattered, but I appreciate it that way. A lot of artists have a certain look or color scheme; mine is crazy and all over the place, but it’s just the way I like it.”

Her Waves Interview Karissa Kaye What inspires you? 

In my art, I usually draw stupid or silly, comical things; but through it and by the end, there comes a meaning out of it all. My tagline is “living to bring the subconscious to the surface.” To me, this means that if you’re doing something, wholehearted and fully in, your subconscious is going to bring something to the surface you didn’t even know about or planned to do. This is how my art forms, it may start as creepy or silly, but then it will have a meaning by the end of it all. Then, the therapeutic process behind it all brings something healing out of me that I can share with others.

Her Waves Interview Karissa Kaye Where does the style of your artwork come from?

There are bits and pieces about all of us that are kind of creepy, deep and twisted. If you’re in the dark and alone, there are scary thoughts that come up. I love drawing pretty people but then ruin it with something off- like. Giving them no eyes or holding a head or something. I think we all have something off about us and if we let it be that way, something beautiful comes from it. Then it’s a graceful drawing, but with a creepy twist. In that mixture, vulnerability is created.  

Her Waves Interview Karissa KayeAny advice to other female artists or female skaters out there? 

Own your truth. It is something that is still a big challenge for me, but it wasn’t until I was fully able to let go of certain things that were holding me back and really do things because I wanted to do them. If people don’t like it, f* it, this is who I am. Being a woman, it is super empowering finding other women who also feel the same way. If I had one piece of advice to give, it is to surround yourself with likeminded people because you will completely flourish in a totally new way. The opportunities I am now presented with would have never happened had I not pursued my art and skating this past year. I’m not the best skater, but I own it. I’m not the best surfer, but I own it. As long as you’re surrounding yourself with people who love the passion behind it, it’s going to be good no matter what. 

Her Waves Interview Karissa Kaye

When Karissa is not creating she is skating and working on her website

Her Waves interview Karissa Kaye

I’ve been carving on my Carver board. For a couple years now, learning to mob and gain speed. Four months ago, I got really passionate about skating. It’s been a journey, but now I think it, live it, and breathe it. I also really enjoy longboarding, but I’m still learning. I love the days when I stand up and catch a wave. It’s a very in between thing for me, but it’s always a good time, going to Pipes on an easy day-even if I only go straight. Her Waves interview Karissa Kaye

How do you feel about Her Waves and our message to female skaters, surfers, and creators?

I love it! It is such a creative group that encourages women to pursue what they love, especially with surfing and skating. I love how it is flipping the stereotype of women in the surf and skate world. It’s rad that you’re focusing on real women doing real things who shred and also highlight their passions and why they do what they do. 

Her Waves Interview Karissa Kaye

Street skating or skate parks?

Skate parks, they’re like big playgrounds!

Guilty pleasure?

Watching TV and Karaoke-but only by myself in the car.

Favorite song lyric? Or band /musician?

It always ranges. Right now, it’s Anderson Paak. I just did a painting of him and listened to his music through the whole process. So, if it takes me 13 hours to finish a painting, I am listening to 13 hours of Anderson Paak. He is definitely my favorite right now and it is really getting under my skin that I haven’t seen him live yet. My classics are Fleetwood Mac and Billy Joel. Some of my all-time favorite songs are Vienna by Billy, and Landslide by Fleetwood Mac. The messages of both those songs are always so relevant, no matter how old you get.

Favorite quote to live by?

“No Idea’s Original, there’s nothin’ new under the sun. It’s never what you do, but how it’s done.” Nas

Go see Karissa's art in person at The Cup in Oceanside all of November

Instagram: @karissa.kaye

Karissa's website:

I’m inspired by the water, the sun, the moon, and the stars. My countless wipeouts, my dreams of noseriding, and the feeling I get when sliding across the face of a wave.

Meg Jacovino