Hi, I’m Kelly! I’m the artist behind @messyeverafter.

Basic info: 
Born and raised in the Midwest, I spent most of my life in Minnesota before taking a brief adventure to Southern California from 2018-2020. Now, I live in Minneapolis with my Texan, guitar-building partner and our dog Murray.

Even though I’m an artist, I spent a good chunk of life trying not to be one. I went to college for a variety of things (biochemistry, creative writing, psychology, and art), but never quite settled on one topic. Happily, the university I attended allowed me to graduate with a very unconventional but practical Bachelor’s degree.

In my working life, I’ve held a variety of jobs before committing to art. I’ve been a dental lab ceramicist, optician, administrative assistant on a finance team, baker, barista, waitress, cashier, hotel housekeeper, and more. I’m no stranger to hard work, but found out early on that non-creative fields just won’t satisfy the itch I’m trying to scratch and just collecting a paycheck will never be enough to keep me interested.

I strive to spend my life in the pursuit of meaning and community. Being an artist is a perfect way to fulfill both goals, but I will not be limited to one title over my life. Recently, I gave most of my energy to creative writing, polishing the final draft of a fiction novel, and I have moonlighted as a creative consultant for many years now. Who knows what the future will bring me.

About me as  human being: 
I’ve always been a little bit of an intense weirdo that feels way too much. I can’t watch horror movies, because the imagery sticks with me for days. I get lost daydreaming quite often. My head is full of ideas. I am passionate about art and all things creative, but I have a strangely analytical mind (data and spreadsheets give me a special kind of happiness). I can’t help but be kind, because life is too short to be mean and angry. I overthink everything, and have a hard time cutting myself slack. I love watching others succeed and grow, and the most fulfilling thing in my life at the moment is knowing I can be a source of inspiration and kindness for others.

About my art and inspiration: 
I love working with saturated colors, movement, and organic flowing lines and details. I am inspired by emotions and energy, because I experience so many of them in my internal landscape. Art is a way for me to get lost and roll around in the beautiful chaos around us and inside of me.  Art is also how I leave those emotions behind. I feel it, channel it, create, then walk away. Which is why it might seem like I don’t take myself or my art too seriously at times. Some of my pieces are moments trapped in time that I’m okay leaving in the past. Which is just another way to say “please buy my art and take it away before I burn it or paint over it.”

Who is Mea?
On social channels, I go by Mea Kelly Marie, and I sign my work as ‘MEA’ (when I actually do take the time to sign the front of my work). Mea is the acronym of Messy Ever After and I’ve adopted this as my signature, because Messy Ever After has become more of an artistic identity than my own name. I’ve been in identity limbo for years, dropping my last name because it never felt like me. But that’s just temporary until I find an identity that truly fits me.

For now, you can call me Kelly. You can call me Mea. You can call me whatever you want, but when my art is finished, Mea takes responsibility. At least for now…

Any questions?


Want to work with me?

I am open for commissions, commercial licensing, creative workshops, and more. Email at kelly@messyeverafter.com.

Have any questions?

From blog post suggestions, commission requests, or even random questions, I’m happy to talk with you.

Want to help support Messy Ever After?