Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Guest Blogger: Meet Kaniema Bey

Since becoming an active member on Etsy I have been able to meet people from all over the world! It has been the most rewarding experience. Through Etsy I had the great pleasure of meeting Kaniema, who I like to call Kammi. She is one of the coolest people I have met and creates some of the most wonderful shirts!! I know because I personally made and order and she went above and beyond my expectations! I will definitely be ordering from her again. She is so easy to work with and completely down to Earth! Like myself she also runs a shop on Etsy and you can find her store xMurderWearx here.

She gave me the whole story behind why her store is called Murder Wear, a lot of people have a misconception of what her store is or why it may be called so. Here is her story in her own words.

Kaniema Bey, artist and screenprinter

My name is Kaniema Bey. Im a graphic designer based in Pittsburgh Pa. I love to draw paint and create digital art. Recently, I began placing these designs on tshirts. I found myself with enough money to purchase a heat press, a HQ printer, and a professional screenprinting press.  I call my line Murderwear.
Murderwear. Sounds harsh right? The reason I chose the name is because... well, I hate fashion, and I hate the American beauty standard. Be thin or you're ugly. Girls go through such great lengths, starvation, surgery, self hatred. I personally had a lot of issues with self hatred while in college. I would hate myself for eating, and starve myself more often than not. I had issues with bulimia and depression. Im not big, Im not small, Im somewhere in between. It took a lot to get to a point where I was happy with myself. One day- I just stopped caring what other people thought.
Now I'm fine with the way I look. I dress how I want- I wear artwork on my clothing as opposed to low cut flashy tops.  I buy silly cothing from Japan, or I make things myself by layering things together. I've come to embrace the tshirt as my canvas and my outlet.
I named my brand Murderwear because people kill themselves trying to fit into a skewered standard of beauty. They murder themselves to look good.  My logo is a heart monitor going into a flatline.
My inspiration for that was a story I heard...I believe it was the mother of Kanye West, who died on an operating table while getting liposuction. She died because she wanted her body to adhere to a certain standard. Its silly, its sad, its pathetic. Love who you are.
I'm inspired by music, geeky tv shows and anime, videogames, and nature. I love the great Renaissance artists, and I love pop art. My digital designs have a poppy feel and they are vibrant and unique.
My digital designs are all done by hand on a pen tablet. The Billy idol was actually drawn by hand with permanent markers and razorblades. I do not trace or let the program do the work for me- I have a problem with that. I feel like if I dont create every angle, and mix each color- then I'm not doing my job.
They make for awesome tshirts that stand out- in a good way. My goal is to have onlookers see you for what's inside- what you love, what the artwork on your shirt is saying, as opposed to how they think you look.
I use great brands for tees- Gildan, Anvil, Hanes, and Fruit of the Loom. I take pride in what I do- making great art on quality tees, makes me feel great!
I just started selling on etsy. Selling shirts is tough- everyone sells shirts! I just hope that people find my artwork interesting :D

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