Kim-Lan is an outstanding artist from France who has done some awesome work including Jared Leto (30 Seconds to Mars), Tom & Bill Kaulitz (Tokio Hotel), Tupac, Avril Lavigne, Obama, and original artwork. She has also been featured on Tom Kaulitz’s very own blog as well as written about in international magazines. She also has recently gotten into fashion design and posters using her designs. I had the opportunity to interview her and ask her some of your questions! Here is what she had to say.
BREAKAWAY DAILY: When did you start graffiti?
KIM-LAN: Drawing has always been my passion but I only started to make graffitis since 4 years. I’ve always been fascinated by urban art and hip hop culture. In High School I had some friends older than me who went with me in order to make graffitis, I remember that I made a big character a half woman tiger. All my friends were proud of me and till that day we make sometimes some graffitis.
BREAKAWAY DAILY: What inspires you?
KIM-LAM: I’m inspired by portraits. I can’t explain why, I always loved that, faces with thin lines in particular.
BREAKAWAY DAILY: Did you study any kind of art in school or mostly taught yourself?
KIM-LAN: I learnt to draw alone since Im 3 years old, then at the age of 15 I studied in an Art school during 4 years and finally I went in a university specialized in multimedia during 2 years. I didn’t like this last experience so I stopped studying there and I began to work by my self. I love Art, making graffitis but it’s not easy to earn money with it.
BREAKAWAY DAILY: Do you make your art on paper before you make graffiti? How do you plan it?
KIM-LAN: Yes, first I draw my model before making a graffiti on a wall. Then I try to make the graffiti on a part of the wall. It’s not easy because Im not tall at all, so sometimes I ask help or I use chairs. For example, I remember that it was particularly hard to make Tom’s hood.
BREAKAWAY DAILY: What does your family think of your art?
KIM LAN: My parents are worried about my future. They want me to have a job with a salary every month. They also think that it’s not easy to make graffitis, drawings and earning money on it. I think that they are right , but honestly I don’t want to make something that I don’t like. I hope that I’ll have success one day and that my family will be proud of me.
BREAKAWAY DAILY: Do you ever get in trouble for painting on walls in France?
KIM-LAN: No the only problem is to find a good wall and with no prohibitions.
BREAKAWAY DAILY: Is Graffiti big in France?
KIM-LAN: A lot of people make graffiti in France, but most of them do it in order to make fun of the policemen. Personally I like making graffitis on walls after checking if there’s no prohibition. One time I did it on a wall where it was prohibited, but I did it because there were already a lot of graffitis on the wall. A lot of persons and also the Mayor loved my graffitis and wanted me to make others. I was touched.
BREAKAWAY DAILY: Would you like to have a large clothing line one day featuring your designs?
KIM-LAN: I began to personalize my pants and shoes when I was in High School but I did it only for my own pleasure. Since Tokio Hotel published an article about my graffitis on their official site, a lot of fans asked me to personalize their clothes. So I decided to create my own shop on the net: “kimlan78.spreadshirt.com” It took me several months to create this shop.
BREAKAWAY DAILY: How did you feel when Tom Kaulitz of Tokio Hotel posted your art on his blog? How did you find out about it?
KIM-LAN: I’m really touched that Tom loves my work but it’s still virtual for me. I think that I’ll realise it when he comes and tells it to me.
BREAKAWAY DAILY: I take it your a TH fan, how long have you been a fan and what’s your favorite song?
KIM-LAN: I’m a fan since 2006, I particularly like “Wo Sind Eure Hände” and also the last song ”Automatish”, this song is really cool!!
BREAKAWAY DAILY: Has any other celebrities you have painted ever reached out to you?
KIM-LAN: I drew Aaliyah and 2PAC, even if it’s too late as they are dead. I drawed others celebrities but I didn’t try to give them.
Tokio Hotel is the only band for who I really wanted to give them my drawings.
BREAKAWAY DAILY: Who are your favourite artists?
KIM-LAN: I admire Banksy and Banga, one of the first french who began to make graffitis. He’s a friend of mine.
BREAKAWAY DAILY: What kind of sprays do you use?
KIM-LAN: Montana cans! The Best!
BREAKAWAY DAILY: What is your favorite place to spray?
KIM-LAN: In a Skate Park.
BREAKAWAY DAILY: Do you have a favorite piece so far?
KIM-LAN: My favourite piece is my last Tom’s graffiti.
BREAKAWAY DAILY: What would your dream career be?
KIM-LAN: I have a lot of dreams, first I’d like to live of my passion. Waking up and drawing, making graffitis it’s my dream even if it’s not easy. When I see Tokio Hotel, Im hopeful. They are from a small town of Germany but today they are famous all over the world. They have passion and they worked a lot. Their exemple give me a lot of hope. I’d also like to personalize all Tom’s clothes, caps, T shirts, jeans, shoes and why not his wall’s house lol. It’s better than living in a house with white walls. Another dream That I’d like to realise would be making graffitis during one day with Tom Kaulitz. I would show him how to make graffitis and he would carry me on his shoulders in order to help me to reach the wall’s above lol.
Thank you to Kim for taking the time to talk with Breakawaway Daily. I wish you loads of success!
Interview by Jamey Beth, Breakaway Daily