In this special edition of our FACES of Nashville series, we’re presenting three Nashville artists. Each creative in her own artistic expression, these painters are bound by their passion for their craft … and their talent, too. Kayce Hughes, Katherine Stratton Miller and Angela Simeone are some of Nashville’s finest artists and most fascinating women. Meet today’s FACES of Nashville trio! 

Kayce Hughes

Kayce Hughes has long had a penchant for all things colorful. From a young age, she knew she wanted to create. She has worked in the fashion industry, created and sold a women and children’s line of clothing, and returned to her love for painting. Her abstract creations, small and large, are whimsical yet elevated, and they bring life to the rooms they inhabit. Meet Kayce!

Kayce Hughes: Artists of Nashville

Kayce sits pretty with her paintings. Image: Provided

What does your background in art look like?

In college, I was a studio art major with a concentration in drawing, painting and photography.

How would you describe your artwork?

My artwork is modern and abstract. I am often inspired by writing, calligraphy and the shapes of letters. I usually gravitate toward fairly bold colors but also enjoy some neutrals now and then.

What has been the most exciting moment of your art career so far?

The most exciting moment of my art career so far was getting to create over 50 paintings for a showhouse in Newport, Rhode Island, designed by Mark Sikes. So often I am creating pieces that I never get to see installed in real life, so to get to visit Newport and see everything installed in the beautiful space that Mark created was a real treat.

Do you have any exciting projects in the works?

I honestly get excited about every painting and project that I get to work on, whether it’s big or small. We are just about to announce that we are going to start offering custom framing to my daily Instagram offerings, so I’m excited to add that component.

Who is an artist you admire and why?

So, so many, but three artists immediately come to mind. They are artists who I admire for their work as well as their generous and encouraging hearts: Christina Baker, Alexis Walter and McKenzie Dove.

What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received and from whom?

I am thankful for many wise words over the years for many situations but this prayer has been a constant help especially when I am feeling anxious or overwhelmed:

“God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, Courage to change the things I can, And wisdom to know the difference.” — Reinhold Niebuhr

What are three things you can’t live without, aside from faith, family and friends?

  1. My morning cappuccino
  2. Creating beauty (this can be anything from painting a painting to organizing a drawer to picking flowers, etc.)
  3. Warner Park white trail

RELATED: 3 Local Muralists Contributing to Nashville’s Street Art Movement: A FACES of Nashville Special

Kayce Hughes: Artists of Nashville

Each day Kayce releases three paintings to her Instagram account @kayce_hughes_art. Follow along to snag one of her pieces. Image: Provided

Katherine Stratton Miller

Katherine Stratton Miller was born and raised in Nashville and has been an artist for as long as she can remember. She draws her inspiration from nature and everyday objects, creating delightful works. Her love of botanicals stems from her youth spent on the family farm and is evident in her Otomi watercolors. She has infectious joy and an exciting project in the works. Meet Katherine Stratton Miller, one of our talented FACES of Nashville!

Katherine Stratton Miller: Artists of Nashville

Katherine’s backdrop is a little preview of a project that is soon to come. Image: Leila Grossman of Grannis Photography

What does your background in art look like?

After graduating with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in painting from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, I began a career as a graphic designer and art director in the Nashville music industry. During my tenure at EMI, CMG, and RCA Label Group/Sony Music, I worked alongside many artists including Brooks & Dunn, Kenny Chesney, Miranda Lambert, Jake Owen, Brad Paisley, Carrie Underwood, CeCe Winans and Chris Young, designing and art directing photoshoots, packaging and marketing for the artists’ record labels and management companies.

With over 10 years worth of experience, I transitioned from the music industry into a freelance career focusing on design and logo identities for non-profit and educational organizations and, most recently, returning to my love of painting.

How would you describe your artwork?

Detailed. Botanical. Whimsical. Joyful. Crisp. Simple. Those are a few words that come to mind. Watercolor has an element of uncontrolled fluidity by nature, however, I paint with precision, and I like that juxtaposition. I’ve always been drawn to the details and nuances of my surroundings wherever that may be. Because I grew up in the country, I was exposed to the great outdoors, and what a gift that was! It has inspired my botanical paintings and my love of the natural world.

The “object paintings” are somewhat humorous and really seem to resonate with people. Many are of vintage subjects leading viewers to share their stories with me pertaining to that particular object. I recently painted a Noxema jar, which was definitely a conversation piece! So many people said, “Oh my gosh, I used to wash my face with that!” or “My mother used to put that on my sunburns … I can smell it now.” If you or your mother used Noxema as a child, you understand those references … ha!

I do love the peacefulness and serenity of nature, but I am also very much a people person, so these interactions and stories fill my cup so to speak. For each piece to evoke such special memories and/or a good laugh is why I paint … to make a connection, to bring happiness into a space and also into another’s life. It brings me such joy and contentment.

Katherine Stratton Miller: Artists of Nashville

“I hope when people view my work, they find joy in the simplicity and subtle nature of each piece. My pieces are meant to bring happiness and a lightness to one’s spirit,” Katherine says. Image: Leila Grossman of Grannis Photography

What has been the most exciting moment of your art career so far?

There are too many to pinpoint just one! I feel so lucky in my endeavors, as doors continue to open and I keep walking in! But if I have to say just one, it would be when I joined the Nashville Artist Collective. It’s so wonderful to be part of an art community, one that is super supportive and provides so many opportunities to show work.

Through the Collective, I recently was commissioned to paint a large piece for the Southern Living showhouse, which will be on view this fall. I will also have several paintings in The Graduate Hotel, which will open soon across from Vanderbilt. That’s pretty exciting!

Do you have any exciting projects in the works?

I do! WALLPAPER! Rowanne McKnight and I have started Julia Kipling, a bespoke wallpaper brand. We are in the process of creating our first collection based on my Otomi and botanical paintings, and we are beyond thrilled! Stay tuned because we can see the light at the end of the tunnel, and it won’t be long before the collection is available. Yay!!!

Who is an artist you admire and why?

I have always admired Vera Neumann. Her bright, cheerful watercolors and drawings are such an inspiration! They have a whimsy about them that cannot be matched. She believed art should be accessible to all people and not only to the elite. With that in mind, she transposed her paintings onto scarves, linens, clothing, dinnerware, wallpaper and beyond. She was such a pioneer.

What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received and from whom?

My grandmother Peggy once said to me, “Don’t worry about what others think. People will talk about you no matter what. Whether you are perfect or spreading your dirty laundry, they will talk. So be true to yourself, and you will persevere.” What great advice!

What are three things you couldn’t live without, aside from faith, family and friends?

Books, my garden and my dog, Hazel Bean Miller!

RELATED: Post-40 Reinvention: How One Woman Lost It All & Found Her Life’s Calling

Katherine Stratton Miller: Artists of Nashville

Hazel Bean Miller had to jump in a shot! Keep up with Katherine (and Hazel Bean) on her Instagram @katherinemillerart. Image: Leila Grossman of Grannis Photography

Angela Simeone

Angela Simeone is an abstract painter whose work goes beyond the canvas and onto wallpaper, apparel and more. Tenacious and quite gifted, she has spent 13 years in her own studio dedicated to exploring different mediums, additionally seeking training and guidance from other artists. Her work is highly emotive and rich in color and design. Meet Angela Simeone!

Angela Simeone: Artists of Nashville

Meet Nashville’s Angela Simeone. Find her beautiful Instagram account at @AngelaSimeoneArtistNashville. Image: Provided

What does your background in art look like?

I began my art career taking college courses and community classes in figurative painting, color theory and printmaking. I have been in my own studio for 13 years and spent three years training and painting with Nashville artist David Guidera.

How would you describe your artwork?

My painting has an enjoyable physicality to it as I create large scale pieces. My color and spatial choices are very intuitive, and the problem solving that is imperative in the creative process provides a natural high. Ever-evolving is an amazing place to be.

What has been the most exciting moment of your art career so far?

Seeing my work placed in some amazing places has been rewarding, and I love being in a partnership with interior designers. We really create the work together when doing commissions for specific clients. I’ve been on television and in print, and it’s all pretty dang good, but a recent highlight is having Philadelphia 76er’s Ben Simmons play Xbox in front of my paintings every day.

Do you have any exciting projects in the works?

I am most excited about my partnership with Dering Hall and Perigold.com.

Angela’s large-scale works are always evolving as she makes intuitive color and spatial choices. Image: Suzy Thompson Photography

Who is an artist you admire and why?

Canadian artist Bobbie Burgers has done astonishing floral abstractions and has grown her business to include multiple studios. I love her fearless use of medium and would love to work with her someday.

What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received and from whom?

I like the quote “You are being presented with two choices: evolve or repeat,” then “Be the change you wish to see in the world” by Gandhi.  For me to be happy, it is important that I focus on being a more intentional person — mother, wife and friend.

What are three things you couldn’t live without, aside from faith, family and friends?

An amazing therapist, a place to be quiet and alone, and Dostoevsky

**********

Dr. Tracy Callister has dedicated his life’s work to caring for patients with heart disease. Get to know this revered local physician, our newest FACE of TriStar. Click HERE.

Share with your friends!