Day 4 – Girl Shouts
Lauren from Girl Shouts is a Melbourne graphic designer, illustrator, ‘zine creator and all round cool chick.
Are you a self taught artist, or what studies did you do to get where you are today?
I am self taught, though I’ve always been surrounded by creativity which has helped develop my style. My dad is an artist, so at a young age I learned from him to observe shapes and shadows and understand how to draw what you see. I’ve always had an inclination towards artistic creativity, and you can learn so much just by reading, watching and trying things out yourself. Through out school I always chose the folio based, creative subjects, and have pursued a few short day courses in specific areas of interest, or hosted by artists that I admire.
What tools, programs and apps do you love or cannot live without?
Nothing is better than the simplicity of fine liner on good paper, if I ever go on holiday that is generally all I will take with me. Copic markers are great for adding vivid colour, and Faber-Castell Polychromatic pencils are the best quality coloured pencils I’ve ever used, the pigment is really strong and velvety. Also occasionally I’ll scan a drawing into Photoshop and trace it or colour it on screen with my Wacom tablet.
Your art provides inspirations to so many others. What or who inspires you?
It sounds a bit boring but everything inspires me. I love creating work that has a strong attention to detail, I think that is more inclusive because more people relate to what they’re seeing. So in that sense observing the everyday and then adding that to my work is where that inspiration is useful. I’m inspired by anything that creates a visceral reaction in me. It is more instinctive and felt, but it makes your heart stop and your pupils dilate! I notice this mostly with vivid, contrasting and complimentary colour; or looking at fashion designs where something is unexpected but feels ‘just right’.
Can you describe your process including how long a piece of art or photography takes you from concept to complete?
It is different every time, and also depends on if I’m drawing for myself or for someone else. Sometimes a drawing just appears out of no where, I can draw a small portrait in five minutes. At other times I feel like I draw for hours and dislike everything that turns out. As for process, I always start in grey lead or fine liner. I never decide at the start ‘I will draw something that I’ll turn in to a print’. Whether it stays as a sketch hidden in a book or I add colour and make art prints from it I never know until it’s first complete in grey lead. With commissions it is different. The pressure that comes with making something that needs to be accurate and the recipient will hopefully appreciate can add a lot of time to a piece, because I become much more careful with each impression on the page, and if you make an error you have to start from scratch.
What part of your process do you love the most?
Nothing can beat the feeling mid-way through drawing when the illustration is coming out exactly as I’d like it. It encourages me to keep going with enthusiasm.
If you weren’t an artist, what do you think you would be doing for work?
I really love creative visual systems that people interact with, whether that is on paper or in a spacial environment. So I work as a graphic designer as well as illustrator; though if I wasn’t doing this, I would really love to work in visual merchandising or exhibition design. I love the idea of creating an emotional impact from colours, textures and imagery in ones environment.
Who is the most fascinating or inspiring person you have met or worked with?
As yet I haven’t worked with many other creatives to pick one as a stand out. I have collaborated with a few in the past, Rachel Fenning @maidagoldmine
is a poet and jeweller who created a collection of poems that I illustrated. We will be releasing it soon. I’ve also collaborated musically with my sister, we called ourselves Girl Shouts. It was short lived but that is where my current art moniker comes from, it’s a multifaceted name. I would love to do more collaborations in the future, I really want to paint a wall mural, or illustrate band posters.
Name an underrated artist
There are two artists I follow on Instagram, and all of their work blows my mind! They are Akiko Iida @sendagipainterssociety
and Yuki Murashita @yuki_murashita
. I only think they’re ‘underrated’ because they don’t have a large Instagram following, but I see their work and think ‘how has the whole world not seen this yet?!’ Jessica Singh is another illustrator whose work I have loved for a very long time, her style and colours are very emotive, please check her out! @jessicasinghillustration.
What artwork of yours are you most proud of?
I feel proud of the Japanese Building series, they’ve had a better reception on Instagram than I had anticipated. I think they’re successful because of the simplicity of the shapes and subject, but then the addition of very tiny detail gives the building it’s own character and makes you look right up close and want to jump in. I have based most of these illustrations off photos I took when I was in Japan 2 years ago, though at the time I didn’t know I would want to draw them. Now I have run out of photos I took myself, so I use google images which feels kind of sad and less authentic; I need to go back and take more! I’d love to draw a whole village, or go back to the buildings and houses and leave a secret copy in their mail box, though maybe that is creepy! Haha!
What’s next in the professional pipe works for you?
I’d like to create prints of my newer building drawings, and work on another zine. I have an idea for a zine filled with portraits of fashionista girls and make it very pattern and texture filled.
Bonus Fun Facts
My current favourite album is Geidi Primes by Grimes. It’s an older one, I’m not very good at keeping up with what is new, but the album is very soothing and transports me to other places, which is very relaxing when drawing. I’ve also been listening to the Baby Driver soundtrack heaps which is fun to jump around the house to when no one is watching.
Images courtesy of Lauren Bajorek of Girl Shouts © Girl Shouts