Kirsten and Karisma Collins Open Up About Being In A Celebrity Family
The pair each possess a unique set of talents, from Kirsten's musical aspirations to Karisma's passion for beauty and fashion. Along with their influencer brothers, Chris and Crawford, the entire family has found enormous success on platforms like Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, and more.
Read their exclusive interview with Influencer News below:
How did all of this get started for you two?
Kirsten: I have done music my entire life. Music was my way to be inspiring and an influence to people. Then, my little brother Christian decided to get into social media. He ended up making this kingdom on social media, and it was so cool for all of us to watch. Our other little brother Crawford decided to do that with him, and then Karisma and I were like, "Yo, we need to hop on this train.” As a family it just became such a beautiful way of impacting people together.
Karisma: We all have our own touch on things and our own niches, as well. I grew up on social media watching my siblings do their own things, and then I joined with beauty and fashion. I got inspired from my family.
Kirsten: It was a competitive realm for us, too. But a good competitive. As a family, we love challenging each other. As you grow older and find out that life has so many challenges waiting for you, it’s good to have that dynamic within a family, even from a young age.
Going off that, there must be some lovely aspects to having business and family in the same realm.
Karisma: Absolutely. It’s really cool because everybody understands what you’re going through. When you have a family and a support system that’s there for you and doing the same thing, you can go to them whenever you need to.
Kirsten: Our parents are such passionate people as well. I’ve never seen parents so strongly supportive of their kids as ours are.
Karisma: They always wanted us to pursue what we were passionate about. That’s been such a huge part of us. They were the kind of parents to throw us into twenty different classes and say, “Do what you want and figure it out for yourselves.”
Your family isn’t originally from here in Los Angeles. Canada, right?
Kirsten: Yes — Calgary, Alberta. My parents encouraged me to go to Los Angeles when I was 14 to pursue music and see how people would take to it. We weren’t doing social media yet, but the whole family was dragged with me to come here. For nine years, we traveled back and forth from Los Angeles to Calgary.
Karisma: Growing up in Calgary, we spent all of our time together. We were homeschooled most of our lives and lived on a bunch of acres. I had a little farm with a pet bull, sixteen goats, and five chickens. My dad and I built sheds together and we used to race each other on quads. It was a different dynamic from now, but we still have that in us — the fun, adventurous, farm side of things.
What about your family dynamic has shifted since you’ve been in Los Angeles?
Kirsten: Each year we progressed into something different as we traveled back and forth between Calgary and here. Karisma and Crawford started finding things they liked about Los Angeles within the entertainment community and they got to find their own niche within it.
Karisma: We have definitely gotten closer in different ways due to all of us working here. We are all creatives, and that makes us stronger. There have been some rough bumps but at the end of the day, we’re all there for each other.
From a business perspective, do you guys get to collaborate on things?
Karisma: We are actually all working on a jewelry line together. We will all have our own individual elements, but they will all be intertwined. We’re still trying to figure out how that looks. On a business side, peopler really love families.
Kirsten: Especially our fans. You know, some of them have families but come from broken homes or have lost their families. Our family, the Collins family, becomes a family for them, in a way. That keeps us going — seeing them be able to connect with even one thing that we’ve done and say, “Thank you for doing this because this helped me want to live today, or this helped me and my mom fix something.” It’s really rare that you see a family come together and work together, even when we can be so different. Even through the struggles and the arguments.
Karisma: We really want to bring that family aspect back to the forefront right now as well. We’ve all been doing our own things, and though that's really important for us individually, we have this awesome ecosystem going at the end of the day.
How similar is your off-camera family to its social media identity?
Kirsten: Our family thrives off being really real. Of course, the ability to play a part in front of a camera is essential in the entertainment industry, and we can all honestly do that really well. But social media is supposed to be something that you can relate to people through. I think that’s why people tend to be more drawn to social media personalities than to famous people, because famous people seem out of reach in a way, like gods. And social media people are like, “This is my friend.”
Karisma: Especially when it comes to Snapchat. That’s our real selves out there.
It’s refreshing to hear that you’re not trying to sell yourselves but just be yourselves. Vulnerability is strength.
Karisma: It really is. And it can be hard at times. I grew up on social media, and I’m having to learn the balance between giving people what they want while also knowing what I want. It’s really important to be yourself because otherwise you’re going to start having to be someone else for other people. At the end of the day, people are going to respect you being your raw, authentic self. It’s an important lesson to learn on social media.
Kirsten, how has being an influencer impacted your music career?
Kirsten: That’s a great question. Honestly, it brought me to a humility. But also a strength. It allowed me to tangibly see how people saw my music. I’ve been doing music since I was 18 months old when I sang my first full song. I performed for 5,000 people when I was 5. I wrote my first song when I was 6. But, until there was an aspect of being very personal with the people who were hearing my music, it all felt very far-out. Something about social media that's really helped me is that it allows for a conversation to start between me and my fans. I get to hear how they feel about my stuff first hand. One of the coolest things that's happened from this is finding out that one of my songs has inspired someone to go make their own art museum. I've learned so much about the people, and myself with the people. That way, it's not always about me, me, me or me being the star of something.
Specifically as a musician, social media is an excellent tool for receiving instantaneous feedback on the art you put out there.
Kirsten: Absolutely. You get immediate reviews. I've also learned that as much as I respect the feedback, I can't always count on every opinion to dictate the way I feel about my music. There are always going to be haters and there are always going to be lovers. I've had to learn to respect opinions but not to always take them to heart. I especially learned that when I first started doing videos with my brother Chris. I got a lot of hate. Any girl who was in his video, [his fans] didn't want them there. It was painful at first because I didn't quite understand social media at that point. I had to learn that it didn't define me.
Karisma, how was the transition from social media personality to starting your own careerI?
Karisma: I'm in the middle of figuring that out right now. I'm the youngest of the siblings, and I've never had the chance to really sit down and think about what I really love doing while my siblings were doing their own things. That's where I'm at now. I'm working on music, the jewelry line, and a lifestyle show where I go out and try different things. I'm actually going to go learn how to fly a plane with this lady in Vegas.
Last question: what's your favorite thing about your sister?
Karisma: Oh my gosh, where do I start. Kirsten just exudes this awesome energy all the time. She doesn't even care about what people think. She's 100% real and raw, and she's so talented. She will just start singing and dancing out of no where, and I respect that so much. Her aura and her confidence to be who she is. She'll just hop up on stage and make up a song on the spot, and it always ends up being awesome. Honestly, so much. She's gorgeous.
Kirsten: You're going to make me cry, Karisma. I'm going to interrupt you because it's my turn. There is nobody like Karisma. Nobody. Something about Karisma is that she's just so decadent. She's very precise and beautiful and elegant. When she paints, she expresses so much emotion and beauty in one place. She knows how to take people from all angles, bring them together, and help them heal. She understands people deeper than they understand themselves, and that's such a rare quality. She can literally be good at anything. She does production, she does art, she does music, she can do makeup, she can go fly a plane and whatever else. She has the most beautiful heart. I don't think I've ever seen anyone who's a friend like you, Karisma.