Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Light Grey Art Lab in headed to Iceland!

We are currently packaging our bags, sketchbooks, and hiking boots as we embark on a creative journey through Southern Iceland. The Light Grey Team is prepping for two weeks of adventuring, artist-led workshops, and collaboration for the Light Grey Iceland Residency Program! We will be leading artists through some of the most sublime, active, and unusual landscapes on earth. They will experience glacial ice, volcanic rock, basalt columns, lush vegetation, costal animals, and microscopic lifeforms. As we explore together, we will also share our creative expertise through conversations, workshops, and on-site sketching. 

During our travels, we will be unplugged from our normal daily life. It will be a chance to make artwork, share with on another, and grow as creatives. You can follow along with our travels as we post the Light Grey Podcast, send updates from Iceland, and share photographs.


Big News! The application for the Light Grey Iceland Residency 2016 is now available! If you are interested in traveling with us for next year's program, please check out all of the details and submit your application on the Light Grey website here! 

We are looking for diversity in industry, location, backgrounds, and creative workshops! This year, we also have the ability to open up two scholarship opportunities for artists who may need financial assistance to make the trip possible. If you have additional questions, feel free to send us a note: Applications are due August 30th.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Autoptic Comic Exhibition Opening & Kick-off Party!

The Autopic Feastival, France's ChiFouMi and Light Grey Art Lab are pleased to announce the joint exhibition Nothing Will Ever Be The Same: Comics 2015 a group show featuring artwork by five internationally recognized cartoonists.

autoptic Exhibition

Join us for the opening reception on Friday, August 7th from 7-10pm hosted here at Light Grey Art Lab. This event celebrates originals, books, and new projects by contemporary cartoonists Charles Burns, Aidan Koch, Antoine Marchalot, Laura Park, Helge Reumann, and a solo collection by Belgian artist Dominique Goblet.

The exhibitions double as the kick-off party for the Autoptic Featival. Autoptic, an independent publlishing and cartooning festival, will take place August 8th and 9th in the Aria building. All of these events are free and open to the public.

You can find out more information about the exhibition hosted at Light Grey Art Lab on the Facebook Event Page here. You can also find information about Autoptic and ChiFouMi, the French Comic residency, here!

Monday, July 20, 2015

Podcast: Ignoring the Middle

07.20.15_Ignoring the Middle
Download the MP3, stream directly on Stitcher, or subscribe via iTunes!

Ignoring the Middle
Length: 00:30:57
Synopsis: Lindsay, Jenny, and Chris are about to leave Minneapolis for Light Grey Art Lab's 2015 Iceland Residency. Naturally, that means we're struggling to deal with a bloated checklist of work that needs to be done, details that need to be planned, and deadlines that need to be met. On this week's episode, we talk about how and when you decide to commit to new plans, and the satisfaction that comes from completing them... and, most importantly, the work it takes to get from that first step to the last.

Show Notes:
Iceland Residency 2016
Patches + Stitches
Light Grey Game Night

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Patches + Stitches Opening Reception and Teagan White's Artist Talk- Recap!

Patches + Stitches Opening Reception
Artwork by Courtney Wirth

Thanks to everyone who made it out last week to the opening reception and celebration of the Patches + Stitches Exhibition! We kicked off the evening with an artist talk and discussion by illustrator, Teagan White. Teagan walked us through her practice, sources of inspiration, and how her work has developed over the years! You can find the artist talk on the Light Grey Podcast here!

Patches + Stitches Opening Reception

The artist talk with backed by the Patches + Stitches Exhibition, which features handmade originals and limited edition woks by 70+ illustrators and designers from around the globe. These unique collections include similar materials, textiles, and fabrics, with drastically different results! Guests were able to walk through the gallery perusing the variety of techniques, hand done typography, ornate details, and delicate originals!

Patches + Stitches Opening Reception

Patches + Stitches will be on display at Light Grey Art Lab through July 18th! Stop by to see these great pieces and check out the entire collection on the Light Grey Shop. You can also view more works from the opening reception on the Light Grey Flickr page here. Thanks again and we hope to see you soon!

Patches + Stitches Opening Reception
Work by Meg Hunt

Monday, July 13, 2015

Podcast: Finding Each Other

07.13.15_Finding Each Other
Download the MP3, stream directly on Stitcher, or subscribe via iTunes!

Finding Each Other
Length: 00:58:22
Synopsis: On this week's podcast, Lindsay, Chris, and Jenny talk about that moment you realize you've found your people. The people that, until that moment, you might not have realized even existed, but who share all the same obsessive and esoteric interests as you. When should you wear your heart on your sleeve, keep a few secrets when creating a dating profile, or reveal the number of cats you own to the world?

Show Notes:
Patches + Stitches
Learn how to Knit Geo Prisms with Cleo Malone
Light Grey Game Night

Friday, July 10, 2015

Artist Interview: Erin Lux


Meet Erin Lux! Erin is an Illustrator based in New York, creating work that focuses on character through shape, texture, and striking color combinations. Raised in suburban Pennsylvania, Erin moved to Baltimore after high school to study illustration at the Maryland Institute College of Art. As a recent graduate, she is getting started on her freelance career and has worked for clients such as Time Out New York and Blue Moon Beer. Right now, Erin is currently working on zines, participating in group shows, and enjoying her new home in New York. When she isn't drawing, you could find her playing video games or checking out the occasional punk show!

Erin is currently one of our Patches + Stitches artists, and has worked with us before for our Stacks exhibition. Today, we are thrilled to be talking to Erin about inspiration, life post-grad, embroidery, zines, and much more! You can see more of what Erin does on her website or blog!

What does your workspace look like?

My workspace is a mess right now. I have a tiny desk and set of draws in a corner of our living room that's constantly surrounded by clutter. I keep saying I'll make my space clean and pretty, but I already made a spot like that in my bedroom, and I never want to work there. (See photo for comparison.)

lux-workspaces On left,workspace, on right, clean desk

What are your favorite materials?

I work mostly digitally, but I love experimenting with different traditional materials when I have a chance! Lately I've been doing more work with sumi ink for black and white projects, like zines, but I want to figure out a way to mix it with my digital work too.

I see that your work focuses a lot on simplicity and shape. Who are some of your favorite artists to look at for inspiration?

I look at lots of contemporary illustrators for inspiration- too many to list. I think I'm most inspired by my peers! I'm lucky to keep in contact with a handful of classmates from MICA, and seeing their work always gives me new ideas.

Besides illustration though, I look at caricature artists when I feel like my work is getting stale. From the ages of 15-22, I spent every summer working as a caricature artist at a theme park and learned so much by looking at other artists. Some of my favorites are the Beasthead's, Aaron Philby, Tomo Tabata, and Andy Uruza.


Tell us about your process. What are things that get you excited to create?

A big chunk of my motivation comes from the desire to share my work with others. I get excited when I'm making work that I think will connect or resonate with people. I've learned that if there's anything I've been feeling or any kind of imagery that moves me, chances are I'm not the only one. So for my process, I usually start out with a collection of images that I have up on my computer while I sketch. I gather color references, mood references, pose references, anything that I want to go come through in the final piece. I usually thumbnail in my sketchbook, but it's Photoshop from there on out.


You made a lovely zine for our Stacks exhibition. What appeals to you about making zines?

Zines are great because whenever I have a really silly or self-indulgent idea, I can make it into a zine, and since the ones I make fall on the quick and dirty side, I can have fun with it rather than laboring over the drawing part too much. I'm sure it doesn't apply to everyone, but for me, zines aren't supposed to be masterpieces, so it frees me up to just have fun and not worry too much about the end result, which is really satisfying!

You have made a piece for the “Stitches “ side of the Patches & Stitches show. Could you tell us a bit about your process for that piece? How is working with embroidery different or similar from you are used to?

Embroidery feels so different from everything else I do! I almost had to treat it like a screenprint, separating my reference image into color layers and working from there. I drew it all out like a paint by numbers, traced it onto the fabric, and then filled everything in, piece by piece. I like that most of the thinking happens at the beginning, and once that part's finished I can go on autopilot, it's very relaxing.

The Mana Tree

What inspired you for your patches and stitches piece?

I'm a huge fan of classic jprgs, and I get a little emotional looking at the graphics from that era (I think I've shed a tear or two over Hiro Isono's Secret of Mana illustrations), they're so beautiful and have so much nostalgia wrapped up in them! The artists really hit a sweet spot with SNES graphics, when 3d was starting to become a thing, but games hadn't all transitioned to it yet. I've had an idea floating around for a while to dig through some of these old games to find "landscapes" that I could recreate. Embroidery ended up being the perfect opportunity for it since the limitations of embroidery are a cool parallel to those of pixel art!


What has been a valuable piece of advice you have received as an illustrator?

It's something people say a lot, but "make what you love" has been crucial for me! Every once in a while I'll catch myself falling into doing the kind of work that I think I should be making, vs what I really want to make. When that happens I have to stop and reset myself, figure out what I want to draw more than anything and do that. Because it's true! The weird things you draw that you think no one else could ever find funny (but that you think are hilarious), usually end up being your most important work!

A funny thing to prove this, my zine, "The Real Hot Dads" came about when I was working my theme park job and noticed I was seeing more attractive dads than usual. I started doing quick little sketches whenever I saw one, hiding behind my easel with a folded up scrap of paper. I even went as far as to buy sunglasses so I could stare without being noticed. My coworkers and I thought it was hilarious, and I loved putting the zine together, but I never thought anything would come from it.

Fast forward, (and stick with me here) the finished zine ends up mentioned on a comics blog, which is seen by a professor from a local college, who then goes to my tumblr, finds my etsy shop and orders something from me. In the email, she mentions some alt-comic artists we're both into, and from there invites me to a talk she's running, featuring one of those artists. And then in a final bit of irony, the artist's talk ended with her emphasizing the importance of doing what you love verses what you think you should do. Afterwards, we all went to dinner- the professors, the artist, and I, and I realized all the cool things that had happened that day were because I liked drawing hot dads.


You are a recent graduate! How do you keep involved with your creative community?

I'm lucky enough to live in New York right now, and even though I miss being surrounded by illustrators 24/7, I've been able to go to lots of creative events and meet other art people. It was great to go to MoCCA this year and be able to hang out with artists afterwards! I also live with another illustrator from MICA, and it's been great to have a built in support system for that type of thing.

Are there any exciting projects on the horizon for you right now? What would be a “dream project” for you?

Right now I'm finishing up a bunch of projects, so I'm excited to have the time to do some personal work! I'm working towards doing more editorial work, but I'd really love to collaborate with a writer on a comic someday. I love drawing comics and designing characters, but I'm still learning the writing part, it would be a dream to find someone with the opposite problem!

Thank you Erin! You can see Erin's piece, The Mana Tree, for Patches + Stitches up at the gallery, or on our online shop! You can also follow Erin and her artistic endeavors on her Tumblr, Behance, or Twitter!

Monday, July 6, 2015

Podcast: Teagan White Artist Talk

07.06.15_Teagan White Artist Talk
Download the MP3, stream directly on Stitcher, or subscribe via iTunes!

Teagan White Artist Talk
Length: 00:44:41
Synopsis: This week's podcast features Teagan White's artist lecture, which took place at Light Grey Art Lab this past Friday, prior to the Patches + Stitches Opening Reception. Teagan is a freelance illustrator, who does commercial work, children's books, and gallery work, with clients ranging from Penguin Random House, Nike, and Wired Magazine. Teagan's work gravitates to nature-inspired imagery, and she talks about her connection to the natural world, how she gathers inspiration, and how she balances her client work with personal exploration.

Show Notes:
Teagan White: Website - Tumblr - Twitter
Patches + Stitches: Online Gallery - Shop
Light Grey Game Night