Now more than ever it’s important to find a source of happiness and light, which brings me to the artist that I’m sharing about today. Laura Fedorowicz is an Ontario-based artist and mother of two who has worked with brands such as Wayfair, Nordstrom, Casetify, Society 6, Deny Designs, and more. Her pieces are full of vibrant colors, and her original artwork/prints are available on her website along with home goods and tech accessories.
In this interview, Laura shares about when her love of art began, where she draws inspiration from, and what it was like partnering with a well-known brand for the first time.
When did your love of art begin?
My love of art is engrained in me. I cannot remember the beginning of my journey with art and color. For as long as I can remember I was always choosing to be creative, wondering about colors, organizing things so they were more visually appealing. I was always the kid excelling and shining in art class, and in high school, the art studio permanent fixture. I bought design magazines from the grocery store on every shopping trip with my mom and regularly conned them into letting me repaint and redesign my room. The Love has always been there. I learned early how using my passion for art was an excellent escape from tough things I faced in my young life, and the practice of letting go via art was born.
What drew you to the abstract genre?
My drive and passion to create are SO tied to being led by feeling or led by the heart. I paint my feelings and don’t pre-plan. I say often that “I create the world I wish for my girls to live in” which means happy, bright, and full of wonder. I feel like abstract art chose me. I went to OCAD University in Toronto for a Bachelor Degree in Environmental Design, and dabbled in lots of different ways of expressing my design ideas (realism, sketching, drafting, intuition…etc) however, for my very sensitive, empath nature the critique heavy aspect of that program scared me away from tackling more realistic art. When working directly from the heart, or painting out feelings, I find the movement in the abstraction and the endless options that come of starting a new piece and just seeing where it leads you are the perfect melding of emotion and paint, and it is the most spirit freeing feeling I have ever encountered. I feel like you can feel emotion and heart in the frenzied but beautifully applied strokes, and that makes my heart beat a little faster.
You’re based in Winona, Ontario. What would you say is your greatest source of inspiration?
My inspiration comes a lot from within and from the perspective, my girls bring to their work when they are creating. They create so easily, with no preconceptions of what that should look like, or what colors are assumed to be correct… I am always thinking about art, color combinations. I am always writing down titles for new work on the Notes App on my phone. However, if I had to pick one thing tangible I would say that I grab snippets of inspiration from design/beauty magazines. I will buy a stack of magazines, and pour over the glossy pages, ripping out fantastic color combinations, or examples of patterns on patterns. They hang on my board in my studio. With my work for outside companies, this is obviously an asset to help me create color combinations and designs that are on trend with what potential buyers may be leaning towards.
I love how full of color your work is. If I had to describe it in one word, it would be ‘Happy’. What are some of your favorite colors to use in your artwork, and is there a color in particular that you like to feature often?
I love that my works speak happiness to you! I think the world needs so much more happiness, and so much more people just shining bright and doing what they are called to do. I have done a complete revamp on my favorite colors in the last year, prior to just over a year ago, I never dabbled with brown, and yellow was almost always absent from my work. What has always been true for me, is that PINK runs in my blood, and I don’t know how to complete a piece without some pink or pink tones. My favorite colors the last year are always on repeat, Raw Sienna, Light Portrait Pink, Green Gold, Light Magenta, and recently I am obsessing over all the different coral shades. Mixing coral is my favorite, and I really love the pairing of coral with purple.
How does a typical day in the studio begin?
I feel like my business practice is much different than lots of people. I have Chronic Neurological Lyme disease and CoInfections, so this often impacts the amount of time that I am able to be in my studio. What I try to do, is to head to the studio after the kids were dropped at school, and paint in the morning while I have a little bit more energy. Some days this doesn’t happen. Some days nothing happens in my studio and I’m working very hard to be ok with that. When I am in the studio, I have my coffee, or water, my music up, and light coming in the windows. Painting/creating is something I love to do first thing in the morning, before checking email, the news, or social media- that way I am most clear, and the energy isn’t as muddled. I will paint for as long as I am able to sustain, and then close the studio down for the day. A daytime nap almost always ensues, and if I feel up to it I will edit/design with my tea in bed in the afternoon. I have come to see my work as more valuable with how limited it is.
I used to think this Chronic Lyme made me less valuable, but the fact that this ginormous struggle in my life hasn’t held me back is finally a source of pride in my work story as well.
Has there been a piece that you’ve created that has been a personal favorite?
I feel like I am always finding favorites in my work. I love pieces that feel like they were meant to be, and that they just came out of me exactly the way they were meant to. When I DON’T get in my own way. I do have a large canvas 60 x 40″ which I have had since university, and for years she had this fairy-like figure on her, with a polka dot background. Last year, I brought her out, with the intention to paint over this fairy that had sat there for nearly 15 years. The layers that were added to that canvas, and the fun that was had creating it really make it a special piece. Parts of the polka dot background still show in the new painting and knowing that history and that the fairy (and all my history with this canvas) is under all those layers is really cool. A special piece to my heart for sure.
In addition to your original artwork featured on your website, you also create a custom artwork as well. What is the largest commission you’ve ever worked on?
With my commission work, I’ve done a set of 3 30″x30″ inch pieces which were really great, typically my commissions have been done on paper thus far, so the clients can frame them which makes it easier to ship. I would say the majority of these commissions come in the 30″ – 40″ inch range. However, working on large canvas’ is a huge passion of mine right now, and I would love to do more of them. I am planning a mural on my studio wall, and when that comes to fruition that will be my largest piece to date.
You’ve worked with several well-known lifestyle brands including Wayfair, Nordstrom, and Macy’s. What was the very first brand you worked with once you’d established yourself as an artist?
The very first brand that I was hired by when I was literally just starting out on my business journey was American Greetings. I did some artwork for a card project they were working on. I remember the day one of my designs was chosen to be exclusive for Bloomingdales, and I was in awe. To this day, having such recognizable brands using my pieces is just so surreal. I have lots of goals and certain brands in mind that would be a dream come true to work with, so I will continue to build my collection and push myself to create.
Your artwork has been featured on everything from iPhone and tech cases to pillows, throws, and furniture. When did you first feature your artwork on a platform besides canvas/paper?
When my first daughter was born, in 2014, I was going stir crazy and I pulled out my paints again to keep me busy. When the business side of my creating found me via Instagram, I was floored. People were interested in my work. I was accepted to design for Casetify and I remember uploading some designs and purchasing one for myself. That in itself was exciting. I logged on to the dashboard a month later, assuming my purchases would likely be the only ones and was shocked to see that “Footprints” was being bought up like crazy. I can see myself calling out to my husband telling him he had to come and check this out… Footprints is still a great seller, and a piece of pride in my portfolio. This would have been in 2015 and we are still creating together.
You recently went through a rebranding with your website etc. What was the best part about seeing the new look for the first time, and who did you work with for the re-branding of your website?
With my rebrand, I spent months being worried about pulling the trigger – about choosing the person who would make my website reflect the feeling that I try to bring to my work and to my life. The best part of working on this website was that as we went through the complete rebranding- starting with my logo- Sam and I were on the same page, and the grasp she had on the essence of my brand was strong. Together we created what I feel is a perfect mix of all the varied stories that weave into my life. The best compliments have come from customers and friends alike that say “it feels like you”. Success achieved. It was my goal for 2019 and seeing it completed motivated me beyond any motivation I had had before, I can do big things with my brand. Scrolling through the site, seeing it in its completion was such a proud moment. I worked with Samantha Grose from Revamp Design Studio and I highly recommend her.
As a mom of two, how do you share the love of art with your daughters?
My daughters have seen me create for as long as they can remember. They have always toddled past my studio and seen my work in progress. They have always heard me bouncing around ideas, and chatting colors. The house they lived in their early years, had a Bubblegum Pink Kitchen, Dark Purple accent wall, and dark navy living room. We painted the front door Canary Yellow. They lived in color. I feel most comfortable creating, and I think in doing activities with them we gravitated towards coloring and creating early on. We are always creating together- coloring, imagining. Their favorite place is the craft store for new goodies to use. My oldest Kenley says, “Mommy, when I grow up I’m going to be an artist and a mommy- just like you.” Heart Swell.