Today we’d like to introduce you to Lauren Anderson.
Lauren, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
Since I was four years old, I’ve known I wanted to be an artist, and I am so fortunate to be part of a family that is supportive and encouraging of the arts. I remember always loving drawing, but it wasn’t until high school that I really started to see myself as an artist.
In 2014, I graduated with a BFA in painting from Miami University in Ohio. During one of my summer semesters, I spent five weeks in Italy, landscape painting with Israel Hershberg and the Jerusalem Studio School, an opportunity that was pivotal in my development as an artist. To this day, I think back on the time I spent there, the lessons I learned, the artists I met from all around the world. It truly was an extraordinary and transformative experience.
After graduating, I moved across the country to Denver where I began working at the Art Students League of Denver (ASLD). Over the course of the next four years, I began building my artist community and network, I took classes, and I wore many hats as an ASLD employee. During that time, in 2015, I was awarded an emerging artist grant by the Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation and another small grant by The Allied Arts, Inc. allowing me to dedicate more time to painting and really kicking off my career as a painter.
This past January, I made the transition to working full time as a self-employed artist and “art-repreneur.” It was a slow start, but things are starting to pick up between commissioned works, a couple of new painting series, and working with my mentor and colleague, Marianne Mitchell. I also recently began an affiliate program, called Paintings for Patients, through which I create and provide custom watercolor paintings to hospital patients who are unable to have flowers or plants in their hospital rooms. So currently, I have quite a few irons in the fire that are keeping me busy.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
I wouldn’t say the road has been smooth, but I have managed to keep moving forward, sometimes slower, sometimes faster. One thing that is so important, especially when it comes to the arts, is to remember not to take things too personally. Rejection is such a big part of our careers as artists, and we have to just keep going. I’m reminding myself of this constantly. This is also why building a network of other artists is so important. Being part of a community can provide valuable feedback, encouragement, accountability, and resources. The Art Students League of Denver really contributed to this for me, and I count it such a blessing to have worked there.
After leaving ASLD, I took an opportunity teaching elementary school art, and I very quickly learned that it was not a good fit for me. And that was ok! While that was an incredibly trying experience, I’m so grateful for what it taught me about myself. Branching out of our comfort zones and being challenged is so important for personal growth and discovery, so I try to take every viable opportunity that comes my way. Don’t be afraid to try something new, and don’t be discouraged if it doesn’t work out!
In so many ways, I too feel like my journey is just beginning. I still have so much to learn and figure out, so I’m setting goals, strategically applying to juried exhibits and competitions, and just trying to put myself out there as much as possible.
Please tell us about Lauren Anderson Fine Art, LLC.
I am most interested in painting still life and the surrounding space, whether real or imagined. Because the art world is largely focused on figurative and abstract work, I look for ways to elevate still life through my compositions in a way that asks the viewer to pause for a moment. I’m drawn to subtle quirkiness within the ordinary, and I am inspired by color and value relationships, the softness of natural light, and the potential for narrative within the composition. In the midst of life’s chaos, my paintings explore and share the simple story of our humanity within a quietly captured moment. As I look inward in an attempt to better understand the core of why I paint, my work has become a space to explore that very question; as if I am constructing my own safe haven to support my search for clarity. These intimate moments are like catching a breath of fresh air and are meant to offer the viewer a similar moment, providing a space where they are able to hear their own thoughts and delight in a moment of solitude and reflection.
In addition to my painting practice, this past summer I created a program called Paintings for Patients. Through volunteering at UCHealth University of Colorado Hospital, I learned that several areas in hospitals are unable to have live flowers due to the high risk for infection, and therefore, many patients don’t receive the flowers thoughtfully bought for them by family and friends. So I was inspired to begin Paintings for Patients, and each week I create and deliver a custom watercolor painting to a patient. My hope is that these paintings can bring a little bit of color and light to a lengthy hospital stay and beyond, continuing to bring joy for years to come.
Who have you been inspired by?
I grew up with two younger siblings, the youngest being my sister. We’re four years apart, meaning we were just close enough in age to get in each other’s way, but also just far enough apart to never be on the same page. Our relationship wasn’t great, to say the least. But as we both got a little older and I left for college, there was a shift toward understanding and friendship. My sister is one of my best friends, and I am so incredibly proud of all she has accomplished already. She is strong-willed, confident, ridiculously smart, and such a natural entrepreneur. I am constantly inspired by her drive and tenacity.
- Paintings for Patients – FINE ART PRINTS – starting at $27
- Oil paintings and commissioned works available on request and priced according to size and media. Please contact Lauren for more information.
- Website: www.laurenandersonfineart.com
- Phone: 6142967119
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @laurenanderson_fineart
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/laurenanderson71292