This summer has been pretty interesting due to the pandemic. All the staple events have gone virtual or have been cancelled. This year it was the 10th anniversary of the New Village Music Festival and the organizers decided to do something small with a few artists and one band.
I was happy to come out and see people I haven't seen in a while. Painting outdoors is always plus! I decided I was going to create something for a friend that is having her second girl. I always like to gift Art, I try to think of something they will be able to use now but that it will last a little longer that only when they are babies. I created this two paintings so they realize how amazing they are and that Black Girls are MAGIC!
I've always liked plants, I work for NYC Parks and still I am a terrible plant care taker. I am never sure if what I am doing is good or not, and I end up doing something wrong (or not doing anything at all) and they end up dying.
I decided to start doing one drawing a day (quick drawing) with ink, I make up plants and flowers, record them on video (and post on Tik Tok) and take a picture for Instagram.
I have several ideas of what to create with the plants once I am done... I will keep you posted!!
Hola! I just started a Tik-Tok. I had an account for a while, but I wasn't sure what to upload. I am not much of a dancer on camera, so I decided to go with what I do best. Drawing.
I have a deep love for Nature, but I have not gotten a green thumb, so I started the #greenthumbproject with the idea of drawing a (fake, invented) flower/plant a day for 100 days. I am in day 9 and you can follow the videos here TikTok
Around May there was an open call for a special show at @rockefellercenter and I decided to send a design to represent the Bronx. I took out flag and gave it a spin... They were asking about a representation of what NY is for you...
I was selected from over a thousand submissions and some great artists are part of it. The flags will be up until August 16 at Rockefeller plaza.
I consider The Bronx my home, and since I arrived from Spain in 2009, I've been part of this multicultural community. I got inspired by the Bronx flag, where a wreath encircles the Bronck family arms (founders of The Bronx). The shield of the family arms shows the face of the sun with rays displayed rising from the sea, signifying peace, liberty, and commerce.
I transformed the rays into The BX, a familiar way Bronxites call their beloved borough.
Last week through a chain of I know someone that knows someone, I got a text message if I knew anyone to paint a community fridge in The Bronx. As I am feeling better and now I can walk almost normal, I immediately volunteered.
Sara and Selma have been providing free food to their community for two months already. They saw what other communities were accomplishing by having a fridge in the street, asking local businesses to donate food at the end of the day, coordinating with community gardens to get fresh produce and checking on the fridge every day a couple of times a day to make sure it is clean and working.
While painting it I was impressed by the number of people that used it, to bring and to get food from it. We don't really know how people are struggling until you offer help.
This is a mutual aid initiative that has been pretty successful in different parts of the city and I see it is being done in other cities.
I will be hopefully painting a few more soon... This one is located at 242 Street and Broadway Ave. In the North Bronx.
We had a couple of technical difficulties to paint the fridge. The first day it was so humid that the paint I brought to paint didn't dry, so I had to come back a second time. All worth!!
This summer our outdoor plans for BxArts Factory are complicated, so we started several initiatives. One of them is a series of short weekly videos. This summer video-series is all about easy & family friendly creative activities using simple materials. Learning while having fun together!
We will be releasing new episodes every week, Mondays and Wednesdays so far.
On Monday our talented Mr. Ruddy will be teaching how to draw different shapes and things. On Wednesdays I will be using old magazines to create works of art!
There is no excuse to start creating!!
"Black Lives Matter" is a statement about police brutality against Black People, it is a statement about how after years the slavery was abolished, they still have to fight for their right to be innocent until proven guilty, they still have to go to the street to fight because the Police, the ones that should be defending them, are killing them without being punished.
It is NOT an opportunity for anyone else that is not black to bring to our attention how much that one time they suffered for whatever reason. Police brutality is happening DAILY to black people. There is no way to hide your color.
The only way to fix this is to recognize what is happening and changing behaviours. Please, and thank you.
This last months have been pretty emotional for me. Not only because of the pandemic, but because I had to move out of what was my studio for the last year and a half. This experience made me grow as an artist tremendously, it expanded my possibilities of creating and finding that space for me to think and just stare to the wall until the ideas come.
During this time of packing up the studio and weird isolation I became part of a Social Distance Bike Club on FB. Looking at all those people sharing their bike rides made me think of my own bike rides, social rides, Nature rides... and how fun is to ride with friends, how much I like to ride on my own, and how biking has been a big part of my life, since I was little until now.
Here I leave you with the last series of paintings I've done and the playlist of videos I created while painting them.
Most of the paintings are available to purchase, you can contact me if you are interested. Prices and sizes here.
The Stay at Home order started a couple of weeks earlier in Spain. All my family is there while I do my thing an ocean apart in New York. Worrying about my family and friends, I started drawing a coloring page a day to download for free on my website. That made me feel good for a little bit, but after I felt I wanted to do something else, create something for myself.
That following week I thought, maybe a diary would be a good idea, but since I am not very fond of sitting down anr write about my feelings, I decided to go back to the image. I love creating images that tell stories, so that's what I was going to do. With that idea in mind, I started creating early morning self portraits, like a meditation system to put my mind in something else than what we are going through.
I get up, I get dressed, I make coffee and prepare the ink I am going to use that morning. I set up my cell phone to record the time lapse and I draw. A quick sketch on pencil some ink to capture the light and shadows of my face. I look in the mirror and for those 5 minutes I only think on shapes, and even though I am sitting at the same desk every day, looking at the same mirror and the same face, it is different every time. The skin tone, the darker sharper shades if it is sunny, silkier if it is cloudy.
It is a diary in images, that despite they are the same they are different. They reflect how I feel that morning, the news I listened to the day before, the number of people we have lost and the ones we will have to say goodbye. The tough times many people is going through due to the lack of employment and money, the ones that are now richer than before thanks to this pandemic. Less than five minutes a day is a long time when you stop thinking and just look seeing.
I have edited a couple of videos already and I used Lara Bello's music, singer and songwriter from Spain that lives in NY and with her sweet melodies moves my brush.
WHEDco is partnering with the BxArts Factory to host a free series of online career development webinars to help Bronx artists transition to new employment opportunities or launch and grow their businesses during COVID-19. Join our interactive session on Zoom Thursday's in May at 5pm to get real time feedback from the teaching artist. Sign up for one or all three events in this FREE Professional Development Series below:
How to Brand Your Art
Date: Thursday, May 7, 2020
How to Budget Your Project
Date: Thursday, May 14, 2020
How to Create a Web Comic
Date: Thursday, May 21, 2020
Register to join interactive session on Zoom or watch on Facebook Live
My seminar will be focused on giving artists the fundamentals to create (or develop) their own brand. As an artist you have to become the perfect seller, not only by creating the perfect piece, but by letting everyone know you did it.
I am a...
Graphic Designer, Illustrator, Educator, Community Activist... ARTIST!
All Images COPYRIGHT © 2008-2019, are property of Laura Alvarez Fernandez. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED