Our newest Featured Artist is oil painter Laurie Simko! Here’s her story!
Q: Tell us a little bit about your background. Where are you from? Where did you study? How long have you been an artist?
A: I grew up in Needham, MA and went to California Institute of the Arts to get a BFA degree. I’ve drawn and painted throughout my life though not much when I was working full-time as a graphic designer, and as a mother of 2. My children are now self-sufficient and have tapered off my graphic design work. I devote most of my time to art-making which has been a life-long dream.
Q: What do you love most about your art?
A: Art-making for me has elements of joy and struggle, satisfaction and frustration, confidence and doubt, which I think reflects the macrocosm of life. It’s a worthy and engaging struggle though and very much a part of my life. The best part of art-making for me is the mental challenge and contentment I feel producing my work.
Q: What is your biggest obstacle with your art?
A: One aspect I find difficult is the marketing and promotion of my work. It’s hard to both create and market one’s art. I’m not that good at it but am trying to “get out there” more in social media, galleries, etc.
Q: Describe a typical art creativity session. What is it like? For example, do you work in silence, or do you work to music? Do you prefer to be alone, or do you need people around?
A: I almost always have music to listen to when I work. I love all kinds of music – it both sets the mood and inspires me. After working alone for many hours it’s nice to have a break and chat with neighbors. Then you can go back to look at your work and say, Wow, what a mess, or Hmm, looks okay.
Q: Did you always know you wanted to make the art you make today? Did you start out in a different medium in the early days?
A: One painting leads to and informs the next, so it’s an ever-evolving process that unfolds organically. I couldn’t predict where I am now and have no idea where I’ll be in 5 years with my painting. I try to stay positive – hopefully growing and in a very good place.
Q: What advice do you have for someone just starting out as an artist?
A: As with anything you want to do in your life one needs to be persistent – keep at it, stick with it and work hard through all the ups and downs. And always come back to what joy you had when you started out.
*You can meet Laurie in her Studio A512 on First Saturday Open Studios. Stop by and say Hello!!