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I'm back, folks!

Hello friends and visitors! If the giant words with the hipster font at the top of this page didn't scream it at'cha, my name is Karen Kliethermes. I have been making art ever since I could hold a crayon, have been doing it professionally for about six years now, and as a full-time profession for about three. To those of you who have been following along with me and noticed I've been kind of MIA, I appreciate your patience; it's been a bit of a ride with facing some very challenging life struggles. In additional to some life-altering personal struggles, I was in two rear-end car accidents within less than two years of each other, had concussions as well as neck and back injuries both times. Both incidents ocurred while I was in a fully stopped car at a stoplight--you can be the "safest" driver and still be at risk, don't I know. I am still healing from the last accident (it's been over a year now...), although I am grateful to say that I'm making progress in my recovery. Not to mention that I am really itching to get back to work. And then of course, there's the pandemic, but y'all know what that has entailed for most self-employed people, let alone the emotional wellbeing for us human beings in this wild world. I feel I have been lucky in my business thus far, making a decent amount of income considering my business is relatively young. Although the vast majority of that income has been through in-person connections, via product sales at vendor events, live-painting originals to be sold at non-profit fundraisers and galas, or connecting with someone and receiving their request for me to draw their loved one. That just doesn't bode in pandemic times. Income-wise, I have basically been scraping by this past year. I've explored that experience and dare to want something more now; I plan to thrive this year. With that means more online sales! Which means I need to first make an online store...and make my website more interesting...and actually post on several social media sites in a consistent fashion more than once every few months....and make readable blogposts like these that give more words to be further connected to this larger entity I understand to be called "The Google". I'm nervous and unsure of how things will go with this new goal, but I got to give it a damn good try, right? Other work goals for this year include: 1.) Completing and printing my birds oracle deck; 2.) Creating a second edition of my first deck on mammals, and re-printing another batch; 3.) Start self-publishing a series of coloring books on Amazon KDP and hope one or more will catch the eye and wallet of numerous humans; 4.) Increase my skills with digital painting and use for my product design, photo editing, and potentially new medium for future products, 5.) Continue accepting commission work, as well as collaborating with non-profits that support the natural world as much as I can. We'll see how successfully I achieve these; heck, I'm just a human. Now that I've started this blog, it will look silly if I don't keep up with it, right? Maybe it will hold me accountable on it's own! Anyways, thanks for reading, for being here on my website. Your interest in me/my work means more than you know, and I hope you can enjoy my musings, my anxious colored markings (aka - "art"), and enjoy the beauty of the natural world and its many unique creatures as much as I do.

Supple juniper berries await the light of the sun underneath the melt of a cold desert snow. Spring is nearing.


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