Hello and welcome!

Who are you?
I am Calisse Basada, a Colorado artist with a passion for art and animals. I grew up in Michigan and came to Colorado in 2010. I live in Denver with my amazing boyfriend and our zoo of furry and scaly critters.  

What kind of art do you like to do?
My friends have dubbed me "The Schizophrenic Artist". I am fueled by a constant creative flow that jumps from subject to subject. Monday I might all be about macro photography but come Wednesday I'm playing with calligraphy. There is inspiration and wonder all around us, I just happen to notice it at every waking moment. 

What is a caricature?
I like to describe a caricature as "more YOU than a portrait." We often look at a photo and although it is us in the photo, it doesn't look like us. A caricature should be the most "you" that a picture can be. A caricature takes what is special about an individual and pushes that to the extreme. Caricatures should have a bit of silly to them but still be able to reflect the trueness of an individual.

Why Caricatures and Pet Portraits?
The greatest thing for me are the reactions I get from caricature. I want people laughing and having fun. It's not jut a picture, it should be an experience. When you see a caricature it's the story of the individual, what makes one being unique and special against the other sitting next to them. Life is full of laughter and love, to me, caricatures are one of the best ways to express these qualities of life.

What kind of medium do you work in?
For traditional caricatures I tend to work with marker and prismacolor art stix. I enjoy working in a variety of mediums though. What ever inspiration hits, I just go with the flow and ride the wave. 

What's special about your photography?
I want to share my view of the world, with the world. My days working with animals gives me a unique perspective that even the owners don't usually see. I am patient and this allows me to gain access to the livelihood of the tiny creatures we often miss. I observe the small details of the world that goes unnoticed by our tall stature. When you see my photography, I want you to experience wonder and the world around you in a new light.

Where do you find your inspiration?
Everywhere! One of my goals is to stay continually inspired. Inspiration can be found in the front end of a car, lettering on a sign, the color of leaves on a tree, everywhere! When I am anywhere I always ask myself 3 questions. What stands out to me? Which of my 5 senses is most noticeable? What is there to experience? Inspiration is all around you, sometimes you have to search for it, but it's always there. We get so caught up in work, and the busy lives we live that we forget to stop and breath. If you stop for a moment, walk a little slower, notice the subtleties around you in the way the buildings climb, or the way a color reflects off of a surface, you can find inspiration. You just have to allow the wonder of the world to flow into your life.   

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