Artist Spotlight: Laura Galbraith

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What inspired you to be an artist?  How old were you when you thought about becoming an artist?
I think this is one of these questions that many of us artists can’t really help but answer with a ‘since I was born!’. I can’t remember the day when I didn’t want to be an artist. It was one of those things that I didn’t realize could be a career path until I was much older, but was always something that I practiced since I was young. I think initially my mom thought it would be a great way to help me settle down and keep quiet and kill time, tracing my hands and feet on pieces of paper… but that slowly turned into a need to impress kindergarten friends with my accurate drawings of Loony Tunes characters, sketch the weirdly-decorative, ornate curios that my great-grandmother collected… which evolved into wanting to draw for a living. (Well, either that or somehow learn to turn into a dog, and change my name to ‘Dalmatian’– this, of course, happening after viewing the animated movie as a kid!)

Laura Galbraith - Yeah Yeah Yeahs

What is your own personal take on what makes a woman sexy and how do you translate that into your pin up art?
I like to gear my drawings toward creating not just your typical curvy, sexy female, but also to create one of strength/empowerment, and …various body shapes and types! I’d like to think that I draw my sexy ladies with a little bit more attention to their personalities and attitudes. Of course, I love glorifying a curvy womans body as well! One of my favorites about pinup, is the woman is never shamed for being naked, and her body becomes a celebration of everything feminine!

Has your source of inspiration changed since you first became an artist?  If so, what consistently still keeps you inspired as a professional?
My sources of inspiration come from fashion, nature, artists from the past, and artists from the present. I think my Pinterest board is a good example of my different interests! I’ve been especially drawn towards trends in patterns lately. Oh I forgot to mention my obsession with color palates as well. I’m constantly obsessing over different color combinations, which usually end up dictating the mood and feel of the drawing before I even start to sketch! I believe inspiration is one of those key things that is always evolving, so in a way, my inspirations are constantly changing as well! But generally they tend to be geared towards the four genres I listed earlier.

What are your guilty pleasures, as an artist that you love drawing?
Oh no, this is a bad one! I have a doodle problem. One of doodling just shapes, letters, numbers, playing around with color, and generally doing weird semi-abstract line drawings. It can get a little exhausting at times (sometimes I can’t think!! It overwhelms me and I’m left doodling patterns and swirly things) but the good thing about it is I’ve heard its a really good exercise to keep your creativity at its it peak. What I also love about doodling unidentifiable objects, is that I feel a bit less pressure to create something beautiful. Doodling becomes about the action of drawing and not so much trying to perfect something. Also, when doodling on the subway, it keeps onlookers from gawking over my shoulder, because they get bored of looking at all the squiggles!

Laura Galbraith Zombie Stickers

If you could give a few words of advice for any young women pursuing art as a career, what would they be?
Stick to it! Never give up on your career even if you feel you’re failing. You may just need a change of direction to your art to keep growing it, keep it successful. My art has been something that I’ve been told before that didn’t have an audience. That it needed to have an audience to  justify its existence. While this is true (the part about needing an audience) If you do your research, you can generally find the certain niche world your art belongs in (of which, there are many)! Of course, its a bit backwards to do it that way, but finding your niche is definitely key to success. Once you know your market, and who your consumers are, you can always fine tune it to better work for you!

Book Signing at the Cartoon Art Museum

GDG will be doing a book signing of: Vol. 1-4, The Art of Natalie Zigal, GirlsGoinToParis, and our Spooky Ashcan at the Cartoon Art Museum in San Francisco on 9/15 from 1-5pm. Come get a book and get it signed and personalized by one (or all) of these artists:

-Arie Monroe
-Leen Isabel
-Marissa Barnett (Crazy Spork I Am)
-Jenny Jenoosh
-Melody Severns
-Natalie Zigal

Sunday, September 15th, 1 – 5PM
655 Mission St. San Francisco, CA 94105
415-CAR-TOON 
http://cartoonart.org/

Artist Spotlight: Ashley Brooke Cooper

Visit Ashley’s Etsy Shop

What inspired you to be an artist?  How old were you when you thought about becoming an artist?
I can’t remember a time when I didn’t want to be an artist. When I was very little my mom would give my sister and I one super-thick, phonebook-sized coloring book at a time and insist that we color every single page. It took a while but at the end every My Little Pony or Barbie or Little Mermaid would be a child masterpiece. When I was a little older we lived in a neighborhood with only boys my age and I got into reading comic books and playing videogames. The first pin-up I ever drew was of Elvira from a poster of the monster truck Grave Digger one of the boys had on his wall. From there my tastes developed onto fine artists and my first love in painting was Claude Monet. At the age of 10 I was painting master copies of his sea-side works on an easel in the front yard, pretending that the tide was rising and I had to lash my easel down to keep my work from floating away.
 
Ashley-Cooper-abamburg
 
How do you think being a professional woman pin up artist differs from the male professional artists who draw pin up?
I think in order to be a female pin-up artist you have to have a thicker skin for sexuality and a quicker wit. It’s just accepted as “normal” for a man to draw sexy women, no one thinks any differently of them, but as a woman you have to be able to take the sexist “jokes” and throw them right back without blinking an eye. More assumptions are made if the artist is a woman than if they are a man. You have to be ok with bawdy language and innuendo if you want to be part of the club. A male pin-up artist is simply praised as a good artist while the woman pin-up artist sees a lot more of the wink wink nudge nudge commentary about their work.
 
 
Has your source of inspiration changed since you first became an artist?  If so, what consistently still keeps you inspired as a professional?
I’m always inspired by the world around me. Over the years I have had different favorites like Alphonse Mucha or the Pre-Raphaelites, Lawrence Alma Tadema or Tamara de Lempicka, but I always just keep my eyes open. It’s not always visual stimulation, I am also inspired by music, literature, film etc. The world is a rich place and if you’re bored then you’re boring. I have many interests and talents that also inspire me. I make jewelry and clothing so fashion is a passion of mine as well. I also do costuming for film which keeps me on my toes and forces me to be detail oriented.
 
What are your guilty pleasures, as an artist that you love drawing?
I’ve always had an intense love of Egyptology. Their painted eyes and the intricate detailing of their architecture, jewelry and clothing is fascinating for me but my main obsession is mermaids. If I could go into the sea I would.

Ashley-Cooper-Princess-Isabella

If you could give a few words of advice for any young women pursuing art as a career, what would they be?
To young women who want to become artists I say: Be awesome, be creative at problem solving, be super passionate, and always look good, because the sad truth is that you will be judged by your appearance, and most importantly STAY FOCUSED on what you want to achieve and make strides toward it every day. Even if that stride is something small like doing a new sketch every day it’ll be a small step closer to your goals. And finally, never listen to criticism unless it is constructive. Don’t let anyone tell you your subject matter or style is wrong. If it comes from you it’s right for you.

 

GDG Goes to Arludik Galerie in Paris

It is often said that the medium of comics, animation or video game is the prerogative of the male artists. Yet like the famous Gallic village that resists the Romans, the U.S. group “Girls Drawin’Girls” composed exclusively of “Girls who draw girls” actively involved in balancing the trend. No protest or activist this bunch of girls who define them even simply as “independent, sensual, offset, different, accepting their sensuality and sexuality”. This show brings together more than a hundred girls spread around the world who work in animation, video games and comics, and under the banner “Girls Drawin’Girls”.
For the first time, “Girls Drawin’Girls” left the United States and arrived in Paris to present a series of Pin Up (drawings, watercolors, gouaches and digital) specially made ​​for Arludik gallery. The founder Melody Severns, accompanied by some girls in the group will travel to participate in the opening of the exhibition’s most glamorous of the year.
Opening and book signing Thursday, May 9 from 18:30

Thursday, May 9th, 6:30 – 9PM
12 Rue Saint-Louis en l’Île 75004 Paris, France
+33 1 43 26 19 22
www.arludik.com

MUSE-BOX Motown

You have been invited to the premier reception/party on SATURDAY MARCH 23rd at a private loft location.

MUSE-BOX will feature an incredible lineup of works from accomplished Los Angeles based artists. And the eclectic sounds of the evening will be provided by Extra Mild Sauce resident DJ and co-founder, Derrick Wize.

7PM – Midnight
$10 admission (can be applied towards art purchases)
Complimentary cocktails provided.
Must RSVP to musebox2013@gmail.com

For those that would like to be kept informed about general MUSE-BOX news including future receptions and available artwork, you can submit your email address for the newsletter HERE…
http://eepurl.com/uWWNr

Artists that would like their work to be considered for MUSE-BOX can submit their information HERE…
http://eepurl.com/uWP3T

MUSE-BOX Premier Reception/Party

You have been invited to the premier reception/party on SATURDAY FEBRUARY 23rd at a private loft location.

MUSE-BOX will feature an incredible lineup of works from accomplished Los Angeles based artists. And the eclectic sounds of the evening will be provided by Extra Mild Sauce resident DJ and co-founder, Derrick Wize.

5PM – Midnight
$10 admission (can be applied towards art purchases)
Complimentary cocktails provided.
Must RSVP to musebox2013@gmail.com

For those that would like to be kept informed about general MUSE-BOX news including future receptions and available artwork, you can submit your email address for the newsletter HERE…
http://eepurl.com/uWWNr

Artists that would like their work to be considered for MUSE-BOX can submit their information HERE…
http://eepurl.com/uWP3T

Artist Spotlight: Danni Shinya Luo

Who is your biggest inspiration as a woman artist? 
My biggest inspiration is female artists like Clair Wendling, Junko Mizuno, and Takahashi Rumiko
You have a fan base filled with both men and women.  How do you think your pin up art is able to attract both sexes? 
I think my art speaks to both sexes because beauty and femininity is a universal language.  Everyone can enjoy aesthetically pleasing curves and colors, it’s not just for one gender or the other.
What do you think is the sexiest feature or attribute a woman can have?
Confidence is the sexiest attribute a woman can have.  If you are not confident in your own identity it wouldn’t matter if you’re good looking.  Confidence is what brings out all the other good elements in a person.
When did you discover that you wanted to be an artist for your career choice?
I decided that half way through high school, when me and my family found out about Art Center College of Design.  Then after I started taking night classes there and putting together my entry portfolio I knew this was going to be a serious path.
What advice do you have for young women artists who are seeking a career in art?
For all the girls/women out there, I think there are 2 most important things you need to remember.  First one is to hone your craft, never stop improving yourself, “good enough” is simply not enough, look among your peers, ask “does my art stand out?”.  Secondly, don’t make art without a purpose, no matter what your subject matter is, you can make it interesting by having a little story or a message behind it, an image without an idea  will not be remembered.

Want to be a part of GirlsDrawinGirls?

If you would like to be a member of GirlsDrawinGirls for the 2013 membership year, please send samples of your work, with an emphasis on figure drawing and pin up art to: girlsdrawingirls@gmail.com.  In addition to your submission, there will be a $5 non-refundable submission processing fee, made payable via paypal to girlsdrawingirls@gmail.com.  If selected, the $5 submission processing fee will be deducted from the $50 annual membership fee.  Indicate your name in the paypal memo area.  If you have any questions, feel free to contact GirlsDrawinGirls at our gmail account.  You will be notified, after your body of work has been reviewed whether you have been selected by, or before 2/10/13.

Artist Spotlight: Liz Heck

lizclimo.tumblr.com | Etsy

What is your own personal take on what makes a woman sexy and how do you translate that into your pin up art? Confidence is the key to being sexy. When you exude true confidence, you say to the world- I like me, so you should too! I can always tell if a drawing is going to be successful when I truly like it while I’m working on it. Of course, not everyone will like it, but the fact that I enjoyed myself while I was drawing it and I am proud of the result is what makes it a successful piece.

You have a popular tumblr site featuring your adorable and quite funny comics, how did you get started in the realm of comics?  I started my Tumblr site last year as my New Year’s resolution. I have always enjoyed drawing comics, but felt frustrated whenever I tried to draw them. I didn’t know what I wanted to say, or how to be funny, or what to draw. My husband convinced me start a blog, and reminded me that sometimes you need to do the work in order to find the results. Eventually, I started to find my own voice and figure out what I wanted to say.

What have been your personal obstacles to overcome as a professional woman artist? As a professional woman artist, it’s very important to me that I be taken seriously. I think in a male-dominated field, women sometimes get special treatment. This is not to say that all or even most men in animation treat women differently, but it does happen, and it has always been important that I stay employed and am respected by my coworkers for my hard work alone.  Where do you get your inspiration? When I started doing these comics, my inspiration came mostly from animals and their unique traits. Then, as I did more, I started to pay more attention to people and how they interact. Now, I get inspired by funny things that happen in conversation, things I see while I’m driving to work, or walking my dogs, or on TV- just stuff that happens all around me.

What advice would you have for girls aspiring to take on an artistic career? My advice for women aspiring to take on an artistic career is do the work and don’t give up! I have failed a million times in my career, or when I was working towards my career, and I still fail all of the time. It’s important to keep working and believe in your abilities. Great things come from that!