We had the good fortune of connecting with Lori Antoinette and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Lori , we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
I worked in the airline industry for many years, and during that time I was doing my art on the side, at shows, doing commissions, etc. Then I made the decision to start my own wearable art business and having the steady airline paycheck helped immeasurably. I admit, my 1st venture was more of a learning experience and not a whole lot of thought was put into it. My partner and I actually did pretty well selling at festivals, and tv and movie sets. Later, I joined an art collective and together we opened a downtown LA art gallery. Another great learning experience, I learned that I don’t want a 4-walls business. LOL. But I also learned that planning is a very good idea. My biggest decision to jump out of the steady paycheck world and brand myself a working artist started about 3 years before I left my job. I started working on my craft, socking away funds, and becoming much more involved with people doing what I wanted to do. When the day came, I joyfully jumped into my new life and never looked back. It’s been a journey, a lot of trial and error, but still feel more prepared this time around and when I’m working, either onsite or in my studio, I honestly say “I love my job!”
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
My work is reflective of my love of the organic world. My goal is to pull the human warmth from the images I am drawn to, whether they are human, plant, animal, or structural. I like to take a spiritual approach to whatever my “canvas” may be (pavement, paper, canvas,wood, etc). When I find my zone and can let my hands do what I know they can do, I find myself working through my soul and heart, and not so much from my head. As a kid, I was always drawn to the impressionist movement in particular. I found power in the notion of the illusion, that all of these seemingly random strokes of paint can create a complete image that the mind’s eye can recognize. Later, I achieved a BA in Fine Art with an emphasis in abstract. I threw myself into finding my niche from somewhere deep inside, often working on several canvases at the same time, allowing my third eye to take over. Throughout my growth and explorations, even from a very young age, I had been told on many fronts that I had a natural inclination for faces. I started incorporating more of the human experience into my work. Much of my recent work includes studies into portraiture. My journey has so much further to go as I find myself revisiting my roots and finding renewed enthusiasm for the process through a spirtual experience.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I live in the Antelope Valley, so I’d have to take my pal to hang out on The BLVD in Lancaster. We’d get a little culture at MOAH (Museum of Art and History) and Cedar, which sit in the middle of various bistros, boutiques, and cafes. We’d hit up my faves, Pour d’vino, Zelda’s 750 West, or Modern Tea room. Then we’d have to check out the local eclectic breweries, Bravery Brewing, Lucky Luke’s, or Tranplants. The decor there is a must see! We might go to the newest wine bar, Complexity, after doing a salt bath at Heat and Halo next door. We’d definitely end up at Big Schotz or Vincent Hill Station for some dancing to our great local bands!
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My biggest shout out goes to my parents, who gave me all the opportunities, love, and encouragement to pursue my truest interests. My loving husband, for always having my back, front, and everything in between. AND for being a helluva fantastic musician and living his dreams, which gives me the courage to go for mine. My Bro and bestie, Jacque Keith DuBois, best buddy and assistant ever! My friends and loyal customers for trusting me! And, of course, my art family, the Herd and Chalk Mafia for giving me knowledge and strength!
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