My Interview with Artist Laura Abercrombie

Laura Abercrombie is an up-and-coming artist. Here we discuss her involvement with the band North Atlantic Drift, the story behind her paintings, and her plans for the future and how you can start your painting career and get inspiration from about that.

When did you first start painting? What is the technique you use most often?

I started painting at the age of 14 in school and took every art-related program our high school offered. When continuing my studies at Sheridan College, I learned the techniques applied to many of my paintings today. With the use of “matte medium” translucent layers have now become part of the way I structure a painting.

Are you influenced or inspired by any other artist? What artist is your favorite?

The Canadian landscape artists from the group of seven have inspired my work a lot. Lawren Harris is one of my favorites; I love his use of bright colors and smooth lines in his painting.

Why do you choose physis (nature) as your main medium? Do you go outside to paint such pictures or do you paint from memory (and imagination)?

Nature is such a huge part of who I am because I grew up in the tiny village of Inverhuron, in Ontario, Canada. Situated right on Lake Huron the environment was filled with inspiration for a painter, from the beautiful sand beaches and sunsets on the lake to the woods that surrounded my home. I have painted from memory and with the use of my own photographs.

Do you listen to music while you paint? What bands or musicians are most inspiring to you while you paint?

Music is a must when painting! I enjoy the harmonies of the Fleet Foxes, Daughter, Laura Marling as well as more ambient music like North Atlantic Drift. Sometimes I prefer music without lyrics so it doesn’t distract me from painting.

Can you explain how your painting is involved with the band, North Atlantic Drift?

When my husband, Mike Abercrombie (band member), was putting together imagery for the first album “Canvas” he mentioned how some of his photography would look amazing as paintings. I agreed and completed the large canvas as a gift for him.

I really enjoyed your paintings labeled as “Old School” on your blog. Have you considered doing more paintings of people? Do your painting with the naked woman and the skeleton have a name? (It’s one of my favorites). Is there a story behind it?

I did the paintings of people when I was at college in my painting class. It doesn’t have a name or story really, just a life drawing/anatomy study from the use of a model. I haven’t considered doing many paintings of people but it might be something I explore in the future since I’ve received a lot of compliments on that one piece in particular.

What was going through your mind as you painted “Abstract Commission”? It’s beautiful…What about “Trees Through Mist”- is there a story behind any of these paintings as well?

I was trying to do something different by loosening my style when I painted “Abstract Commission”. “Trees through Mist” is one I did from memory after an early morning drive to work through the countryside. I wanted to play up the sense of depth on this one and try to experiment with a technique to paint fog.

What is your favorite painting done so far?

The painting using North Atlantic Drift imagery is my favorite. I like the cold, calming effect it has an eerie silhouette. This was a familiar memory of mine, walking along the icy shores of Lake Huron.

Are you currently working on any new projects?

I’m doing a commission of nature paintings right now. It’s a set of three paintings that hang together and it is very detailed. In the new year, I’m staring into a series of abstract canvases based on a water theme. The goal is to hold a collaborative exhibition with these abstract paintings accompanied by an ambient soundtrack created by my husband.