- Calvary Lutheran School :: TRUE NORTH
- 2012 Passion Awards
- LifeTree Legacies
- Veteran's Memorial :: TRUE FREEDOM
- Mercy & Truth Medical Missions :: Prayer Room
- The Art Event at KCC :: IXOYE
- The Art Event at KCC :: FREEDOM FIRE
- The Art Event at KCC :: HOUSE OF HOPE
- The Salvation Army :: 2011 Season Pass
- The Hope Memorial >
- Up & Coming
Kelly VanElders is [ set apart ].
_Kelly VanElders is a visionary that sees potential in all God's creation has to offer. As a landscape architect, he uses his gifts to create beautiful and functional spaces that his clients rave about. They describe him as a good listener and a creative thinker, and we couldn't agree more! (Above, Kelly is using his beloved Prismacolor Carmine Red pencil to shade the courtyard design for LifeTree Legacies, a new ministry set apart is working with
in Amarillo, Texas.)
"I have always loved creating things outside. When I was a kid I tore up my parents' back yard so much with my "projects" they decided to cordoned off a small wooded area for me
to build and create, but I was supposed to stay away from the rest of the property. I did venture outside that boundary on occasion...but that small dirt patch was my earth pallet and foundation for what I do today. I am blessed with a wonderful wife and two amazing daughters who are the focal point of my life!"
What is/are your creative passion(s)?
Exterior place making, natural materials, environment and human interaction.
How are you using your creative gifts?
A few years ago I left the corporate world of large architecture and engineering firms and started VanElders Design Studio. While my main clients serviced are high-end residential properties and parks, I also enjoy working with churches and ministries to turn their visions into built environments. Currently, I am honored to be working with set apart, The Giving Grove, and two local churches.
What message do you try to communicate in your creative work?
I enjoy designing outdoor environments and features where people interact with elements found in nature. God has provided this incredible planet with many details we have discovered and many more we have yet to discover. I just want to take the elements He has already created and shape it, blend it, organize it into spaces people can enjoy, fellowship and relax in.
What is your ideal environment for creating?
Most anything will do, but ideally maximum natural light, large drawing table with every imaginable size felt tip pen, boxes of trace paper, AD Markers, and my must-have sketch tool--the Prismacolor Carmine Red pencil!
Where do you get your inspiration?
This is an easy answer, nature! (God’s detailed creation)
Who has been a great influence on your life?
It is so hard to name just one person. I’m like a collective experiment of influences from college friends and professors to colleagues and family. The greatest influence on my life over the last 20 years is my incredible wife, Susan.
Describe the ultimate opportunity in your line of work.
The world of Landscape Architecture is vast however in my specific niche, the dream opportunity would be to take a large property in its natural state and create a design that integrates new elements that achieve all program objectives yet blends the built environment harmoniously with the natural environment.
What advice do you have for other artists and creatives on their journey?
In the creative process, there is a subtle yet loud realization when a design comes together. If you are in creation mode, you must keep trying new ideas until you reach that moment. Stay up late as needed to achieve that moment.
What would you do for Jesus if you knew he wouldn't let you fail?
Name it, who am I to do anything but serve Him. It took a lot of time to come to that conclusion, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Experience his creativity.
Kelly's creative expertise runs a wide gamut. The slideshow above is a great representation of his stunning, award-winning design.
Good to know.
Kansas State University and Central College
1965 Chevy Impala 2 door, 327
My wife, the most selfless person I know.
“Every man dies. Not every man really lives.” (William Wallace, Braveheart).
Who makes you laugh out loud?