It was in the late 1990s when Laura Gibbs was pulled into the art world. Persuaded by a friend to take a watercolor class, Laura was struck by the medium and never looked back. “That was my catalyst, I just fell in love.” Since that moment over 25 years ago, Laura has continued to immerse herself further into the arts.
While Laura began with watercolor first, she has since expanded to more experimental mixed-media. “The blending of media is what I love. Working with mixed media, like adding ink to watercolor and then acrylic. I am very process oriented and experimental.” As Laura learned more about new media, such as cold wax, she would add them to her process.
Upon analyzing her creative process, Laura says “it is always very intuitive with my creative work, there is normally not a plan. I just react to what is happening on the surface.” She will often begin with transparent ink, layers of watercolor, then build in acrylic and even cold wax. “My creative process is often trying to solve a problem. It’s the initial problem solving after the intuitive steps that shapes a painting.” It is the layering of color and texture which inspire Laura to unveil the hidden painting. “Of course, you have to be able to accept that it may not always work out the way you want. Sometimes it comes together on the first try, sometimes not.”
While Laura has experimented with a variety of subject matter over the years, she found her home in abstract expressions. “I even did a series of whimsical animals in watercolor but when I landed on the mixed media, that's when the non objective took off and it's what I enjoy the most.” Through her artistic ventures Laura has learned the key to success is, “you have to keep trying new things and be open minded. Keep trying to improve, in whatever you do, and move forward with your work.”
Laura is a lifelong resident of the Hampton Roads area. While always interested in art, she became serious about fine art in the late 1990s. She is primarily self-taught and has studied with several local and nationally recognized instructors.
Throughout her career, Laura has won awards and exhibited her work in a number of outdoor art festivals and juried shows including Stockley Gardens Arts Festival, Gosport Art Festival, Seawall Art Show, Norfolk Academy Art Show and Crozet Art Festival. Her work is on display at Crossroads Art Center in Richmond, VA. Additionally, her work is included in the permanent collection of the city of Chesapeake, VA.
Experimentation with both alternative surfaces and combinations of various media is an essential part of Laura’s creative process. Subject matter is primarily abstract and non-objective. The artist’s spontaneous and intuitive approach gives the process a life of its own, with each work a discovery of pattern, texture, and color.