Being surrounded by like-minded individuals is crucial to artistic progress, which can also fan the flames of inspiration. For Grace Kinter, known as withGrace, collaboration was the push for her to surrender to her art and pursue it at full force. Since the age of 15, she knew her potential but was held back by depression and negative thoughts. It wasn't until she finally worked up the courage to approach other artists when her journey really began.
"Things really changed for me when I opened up to other musicians and producers and started collaborating more. That took all the heavy, emotional pressure off my shoulders because it wasn’t just about me anymore."
Like many artists, Grace's work serves as an outlet for emotion. She literally went through this process during the filming of the visual for her latest single, "Fallin' Off." Tackling the tough, oftentimes melancholy, subject of heartbreak and friendships growing apart, she doesn't shy away from the rough spots or sugar-coat her pain. While creating the video, Grace was able to finally heal from the experience that sparked the creation of the song, while collaborating with director and long-time friend, Aliya Haq.
Like a true fire sign, her opinion on sustaining relationships with both ex-partners and friends is pretty unfavorable. According to Grace, “time and distance” is the best way to deal with the messy aftermath of a breakup, whether a romantic or platonic relationship. Through the years, she’s adopted a resilience and heathy attitude that gets her through heartbreak, with music being an outlet for those adverse emotions. “I just let myself feel the hurt, I don’t push it away, I don’t hide from it, I write about it in both songs and journals,” she says.
Loving yourself isn't always the easiest thing to do, and even the best of us struggle with it. According to Grace, she still has a ways to go. A big part of her body positivity journey is learning to let go, find balance, and trust the process. Using music as her creative outlet continues to allow her to come to terms with herself as a human being, first and foremost.
Favorite part about the Chicago creative community?
Everyone’s fantastic and so low-key about it at the same time. We have the most talented people in the whole country for sure but no one really realizes it yet outside of Chicago.
It’s like our secret.
Favorite TV show?
I’m a HUGE Grey's Anatomy fan as of recently. Also love Weeds, Insecure, The Chi... I watch too much TV.
Probs a whiskey sour or a good ol’ margarita.
Favorite Chicago artist?
Saba. Bucket List project changed my life.
Favorite spot in Chicago?
Golden House, the best cash-only diner in the city, and Danny’s the best cash-only dive bar in the city. Most likely Danny’s on a Saturday night and Golden House that following Sunday morning will be the move all summer.
"Spotlight On" is a bi-weekly series highlighting Chicago creatives with a twist. We share a slice of their stories and what they love, hoping to inspire and connect.
Words by Jasmine Muldrow