As she puts it on the site: "I am choosing glass because it has the capacity to return the photographic concept to its roots which resides in light itself."
For Kelly, the art is the thing, and while she looks back with regret on the hopefully just temporarily lost work -- if she can afford a data-retrieval attempt some day -- she said she wants to use the loss to goad her to new work. "There were so many perfect, beautiful things I lost. Also, I had to move on with things."
She has always looked for fresh new ways to manifest what strikes her visually and her often blended, transformed photographic images attest to that fact. "To me, doing art is being very experimental," she said.
She almost always totes around her high-end Canon EOS 5D Mark II digital SLR camera. But she might just as well be trying to capture something that inspires her eye with infrared or homemade pinhole cameras, cheap Brownie cameras and the Holga toy camera, a cult favorite for some shooters.
While she'll continue to produce digital and paper prints, her hard-drive meltdown has encouraged her to pursue more intently a long-held desire to make real-world objects from her photographic visions.
"For example, I love bookmaking. So, photography lends itself naturally to bookmaking," she said.
New digital transfer technologies allow for an even broader range of imagery fused onto or into real-world, usable objects such as stained glass and ceramics, or even beyond.
"I really like functional art -- art that's not just hanging on walls. I would love to make solid things like lamps or chairs. I eventually want to transfer photography to ceramics and make, like, a lamp of a tree. Have the branches be the stained glass. So, the photography will be three-dimensional and the stained glass will be three-dimensional."
The USA Project funding will help sort out the technology, so her photographic imagery can manifest itself outside of, say, a hard-drive subject to the digital equivalent of a heart attack.
"I need to make things real and not keep them digital, to find ways to print them and find ways to communicate them in solid ways people can realize," said Kelly. "It's just like a new mission or something."
For more on her crowd-funding project, type in Kelly's name at USAProjects.org.
Reach Douglas Imbrogno at doug...@cnpapers.com or 304-348-3017.