Maker interview with Billy Kheel
Having recognized the passion, drive, and pure enjoyment of making things that each Making It contestant illustrates, Makerviews is excited to have the chance to highlight, feature, and share insights from each contestant. This Making It series gives a deeper look into these makers’ lives. The format: Makerviews asks these talented individuals two questions. That’s it, two questions. Learn more about this series.
Billy Kheel is a very creative artist and his medium: felt and thread. This maker is creating felt sculptures, wall hangings, installations, and more. His work’s aesthetic ranges from retro to abstract and is often created using unique felt appliqué techniques.
Check out this interview with Billy Kheel, maker from NBC’s Making It.
Making It Interview...
with Billy Kheel
What inspires you to keep making things?
"I feel like making things is like starting a conversation with the people that are going to see it or see you making it. People are going to see what you make and they will let you know how they feel about it. I am constantly surprised by people's reactions to things I make and usually, their reactions inspire me to make more (and better) stuff. It can be a great, fun circle.
On a more day to day level, I seek inspiration from my neighborhood, riding my bike, art shows, sports, teaching kids, books, movies, traveling, fishing, my fellow makers, my upbringing, and doing projects with my family."
What one piece of advice would you give to other makers?
"Get after it!! Work on getting a great idea, look at your life, your surroundings, things that are meaningful to you, that you are passionate about and want to pursue. Once you lock into your idea, start the process of making it. Research how you might want to do your project, start making some drawings or assemble images for inspiration. Work it out on paper, think about it, break it down into steps and get going.
Even the longest journeys start with small steps, one in front of the other. Then as you go, keep yourself open to new ideas, new ways to do things. Before you know it, you will have something uniquely yours. And don't worry if it doesn't work out at first, keep after it. The process is actually the fun part."
"Even the longest journeys start with small steps, one in front of the other." — Billy Kheel
Thank you all for reading this interview - get out there and make things!
Next up on Making It series:
Making It Interview...with Robert Mahar
Robert Mahar, maker and contestant on NBC's Making It. Interview series highlighting makers who share their advice and why they make.
More about NBC's Making It:
Presented, produced, and hosted by Amy Poehler and Nick Offerman with judges Dayna Isom Johnson and Simon Doonan and Shop Master Jimmy Diresta. This show is set in a serene cabin, filmed near Malibu and it was recently announced that the show is set for an upcoming Season 2!
"The best makers from around the country take on a series of handmade projects they must complete in their own unique way. As the competition goes on, the challenges become increasingly difficult, and the least successful maker is eliminated each week.
Each episode of the competition will consist of two projects that allow the makers to demonstrate their specialized talent while sharing skilled insights and touching personal stories. First, the "faster-craft" round will be a timed challenge that will test their ability to not only work quickly but imaginatively as well. Next, the makers will move to the "master craft collection," a one-of-a-kind themed challenge in which the competitors will need to use their expertise and get inventive in order to assemble a winning craft that fits the theme of that week.
The show culminates in a final craft-off between the last two makers. Taking place in a serene outdoor setting, the positivity, character and camaraderie of handmade culture shines through as the comedic hosts and judges provide encouragement, guidance and lots of laughs."— sourced from Wikipedia and NBC
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