I’m Lisa Skelly. I am a vegan artist from Brighton. In 2017, I opened an online shop called ReKINDle Clothing.
The idea for my shop started when I read an article about the demand for mass produced, affordable clothing and the actual cost that this industry is having on the environment, as well as the ethical values that get ignored to keep up with that high demand. The harmful dyes that leak into the environment, the plastic based fabrics that sit in landfill and don’t degrade, the sheep hurt after being sheared quickly and carelessly for wool, the cotton farmers working with harmful pesticides... the list goes on.
As someone with a mild charity shop obsession (having bought almost every item of clothing I own from them!), I was keen to use this new knowledge to encourage other people to buy second hand and to be open to the creative possibilities of upcycling pre- loved clothes.
I decided to start collecting secondhand denim jackets and use my love of art to paint, decorate and embellish them into beautiful pieces of wearable art. What do I paint though? Well the thing I am most passionate about is animal rights, so I decided to paint animals. Animals that suffer at the hands of humans. I didn’t want to paint images that were difficult to look at, I wanted to simply show the beauty, the emotion, the human likeness in all of the animals that we exploit. That is how I decided to advocate veganism.
All of my artwork is made to raise awareness for the vast and varying forms of animal exploitation. With each piece I create, I write a little about the inspiration behind the artwork and why I have focused on that particular issue.
I love that my artwork is on clothing! I think that Visual messages are often very powerful and to put a visual message on a canvas that moves around, weaving through streets of people will increase the amount of eyes that see it and the amount of minds that process it and ponder over it, and, if just one of those minds makes a compassionate connection and buys a vegan dinner that day, I'm one happy bunny!
Why I am vegan
I have been a vegan for 2 and a half years.
I first began researching animal exploitation after stumbling across a video of footage from a cosmetics animal testing lab and being absolutely heartbroken that this kind of injustice takes place! This led to me learning about the meat industry and deciding that I didn’t want to eat meat any more. I soon decided to cut out dairy- initially for health reasons, however I began researching and discovered everything I now know about the dairy industry which made my transition to veganism very easy and very permanent. I live an entirely vegan and eco lifestyle. I am vegan for all of the animals that are suffering terribly for our taste buds, our beauty products, our entertainment, our greed. I am vegan for the planet (our home) that we are jeopardising and, I am vegan for my own health and wellbeing. I have never thought of veganism as a sacrifice, but rather, the very best thing I’ve ever done and an absolute pleasure!
Why I support Viva's Art for Animals project
I think Viva! are an important and amazing charity! I have been a 'Viva! Supporter' for just under a year and check in to the website regularly for updates and information. I find Viva! very informative, helpful and encouraging and I want to help raise some money for a great charity! Doing Art For Animals will also allow me to be part of an online community of artists all working towards a similar goal.