When Lauren and I spoke, we bonded over our perfectionist personalities. Those tendencies have influenced her work and the way she creates ---- drawing her into digital art, where she can create pieces quickly and focus on details. Lauren is a SCAD graduate with a degree in Fashion Marketing and is currently continuing her studies at MICA in a graduate program for Business of Art and Design. In her free time, she wants to continue her volunteer work, helping others through art.
Tell me a little bit about yourself ---- where you’re from, where you grew up ---- does this inspire your work? If not, what does?
I was born in Abington, Pennsylvania, and I moved down to Delray Beach, Florida when I was four. I am unfortunately just a Floridian. My family and I have Philadelphia pride, but I’m really just from here. My work isn’t inspired by where I’m from but by the music and art that I grew up with.
My dad is super into music; he taught me about classic rock and my brother is an animator. My parents are both architects so I was always surrounded by art. They always brought me to museums. I watched films I shouldn’t have watched when I was a child. I always absorbed other art, and I was always inspired by David Bowie and surrealists. That’s where my art style came about.
Did studying Fashion Marketing influence your pieces?
I was always super into fashion growing up. My whole family was. My grandmother really spoiled me, buying me everything I wanted. Once my grandfather became wealthy she went for it: she had 40 Chanel purses.
When I was in school we learned a lot about mood boards, which is when I went into digital collages. I was always painting and I had always avoided digital art because I love texture. But once I tried it I realized how easy it was to go into the detail work which I’m normally not good at. I’m very impatient.
I see you love to work with mixed media, tell me a little bit more about that process.
I draw a lot on my iPad. I use Adobe Draw. I like clean lines and avoid texture until I print out my pieces on canvas. I like to have a solid base with very distinct shading.
I also use Photoshop a lot ---- I used it in school so I got really used to it. Digital art has become my thing for the past couple of years, which I never thought would’ve happened.
How do you experiment with paints and collages?
I’ve been getting back into painting. I really miss it. I’m trying to be more messy and less of a perfectionist. In high school I did so many paintings and experimented with watercolors, my favorite; it’s so fun to mix and add salt and just let the paint do its thing. I’ve been trying to experiment with the medium again and let go. I don’t like doing something that I don’t like the end result of.
How long does it take to make and how do you make each piece?
I recently did a series of album collages. That was a challenge for me, I wanted to see how fast I could do the collage. So I set a timer and gave myself from start to finish of an album to finish it. I’d say, right now my collage work takes two hours. I definitely go back and fix things later, but the base work takes two hours. My paintings take a lot longer ---- those take days. I’ve been told I am a fast worker, but that goes back to me being impatient. I like to see an end result quickly.
What inspires the design/colors for each piece?
A lot of my style comes from children's book illustrations. My senior thesis was actually a children’s book. I did all the illustrations. I go back to very vibrant, bright colors because they are very eye-catching, or pastels, but I avoid dark colors because it’s my outlet of trying to be happy. I want something bright and colorful. Especially now that everything is on social media ---- when you scroll down your feed you want something that catches someone’s eye and makes them stop.
With the music collages that I was doing, I was trying to catch the tone of what I felt while listening to the album. I was wishing I had synesthesia to try and figure out the mood it made me feel. Colors have such a psychological aspect when you consume something. They are very important. Before SCAD I was studying to be an art therapist and having that basis of knowing what the eye likes and how the brain works is so important in any artistic field.
Which one is your favorite to make?
I have two. One is still my favorite thing I have ever done. When I was in high school I made an Alice in Wonderland series with watercolors. Each chapter of the book I captured with illustrations. It’s one of my favorite books, so reading it again as an adult and capturing his beautiful, weird, surrealist writing in the way I envisioned it, rather than how Disney did, was really fun.
I also really enjoyed making my music collages. I was in quarantine, and I needed something to make me happy again. I had a time… I dyed my hair three times, got a tattoo... It was nice to go back to art therapy. Music is my outlet to get away and adding the painting was great and relaxing. I got really great feedback which was wonderful to know because you never know if you’re getting a positive response. I like seeing my artwork up on the wall - the life after the piece.
I love Lauren’s playfulness with different mediums. She’s constantly exploring and sharing these methods with the people around her. Definitely follow her on social media to see it all! I’m excited to see her continuous growth as an artist.