Interview: Laura Carey
I love artist Laura Carey's mix media approach to her work. She uses space, blocks of colours and shapes really well to form these surreal landscapes of suburban areas.
Her work reminds me of my home in Doncaster; the same kind of houses all uniform and perfect and really quiet too (which is probably why I moved to London!)
Hello! Who are you and what do you do?
My name is Laura Carey. I am an Irish artist who now lives in Sydney, Australia. I studied printmaking in Dublin and work mainly in screenprinting and mixed media combining photograph, painting, collage and digital work in a similar style to how I print. I have also stared to illustrating since coming to Sydney and meeting some great illustrators here.
What inspires you and your work?
I really love houses, I have become more and more drawn in by them along with all images of what seems like banal landscapes I think they inspire my work by because when I look at them I see so much more than just the ordinary and start to re imagine them as I want to create them.
Can you explain your creative process?
When I am printing I have a very loose creative process. I dont have a finished piece worked out. I have a basic idea and starting point and then I take alot of images ( I'm constantly collecting images) and make up as many screens as I have available so that I have alots of options that I want to work with. I just start piece bits together like a jigsaw puzzle and it just grows into what its supposed to be. I know alot of other people work out the whole image before they get to the point of printing anything but for me the process of printing is part of my creative process.
Why is that suburban areas form a major part of your work? There's something quite surreal about how you present these buildings, probably because no one is around.
I just grew up surrounded by housing estates with nothing else to see around me and I always saw that these old famous artists like Monet etc painting landscapes and thought what do I have to look at, these beautiful nature scene are not what we are surrounded by anymore. I think it was that thought that made me start to stop and look at them and then I began to see all the quirky details of each one that people give them try to put the individual stamp on them and I started to be intrigued by it all. From there I just found myself captivated by these banal images and what more there was to them. I like to think I take the banal and pick out the beautiful parts and then add to that to make my own surreal new versions somewhere in between the real image I started with and complete fiction. I never put people in my work because I want to make the buildings themselves the characters like its their portraits.
I love your prints by the way :) Do you spend a lot of time making things for your shop?
Thanks I'm so glad you like my work .All the work in my shop is based around the originals I make for exhibitions or jobs so I have just started to make some of these into small reproductions for my etsy shop. I would like to make some other item for the shop, like screen printed handmade notebooks or cards but im still working on that at the moment. I am just a maker, I spend a lot of time doing things with my hands if not new work or etsy stuff im knitting etc.
What other ways do you promote yourself? I'd love to know!
To promote myself I try to keep updating my blog, submit to online magazines like Blanket Magazine. I have several new shows coming up this year in Sydney, a group show called This little Teapot in Paper Planes Gallery on March 23rd and a solo show called Suburban Dreams in the Chrissie Cotter Gallery on April 6th. I am new to etsy so to get people to see my shop and work I have started approaching people like yourself and Pikaland etc with creative blogs who might mention my work or shop. I have joined soem teams on etsy to get involved with the community. I hope if I keep plugging away it will pay off.
Any advice for the lovely peeps out there?
Advice would be the same you just have to keep plugging away.
Laura's prints are beautiful, see for yourself by visiting her Etsy shop! And you can read her blog here.