For our latest installment of our tastemaker series, we want to introduce you to Laura Serventi. We first encountered Laura’s work on Instagram and we were blown away. Laura’s amazing use of vibrant colors and plant-inspired intricate artwork captured our hearts immediately – and we wanted to know more. Let’s meet Laura!
Favorite Plant: Cathalea Dottie
Can you share a little bit of background about yourselves?
I was born and raised in Buenos Aires, Argentina. My grandfather, who was a painter himself, was an important influence on me. He transmitted me his love for art and it grew deeply inside of me.
I attended the School of Fine Arts in Buenos Aires, where I studied Painting, and then moved to Italy to study Photography. While I was there, my art projects were mainly photographic, and I stopped painting all together. I thought it was not for me anymore, and decided to concentrate on photography. But after a while, paint started leaking back into my projects : from a few painted details in a photographic collage project , to a series of b&w photographs colored by hand, to painting mural size landscapes just to use as photographic backdrops.
I had moved to N.Y. by then. Looking back ,I think those big landscapes defined my return to painting and triggered my plant obsession. I started painting again after that.
Can you share a little bit about your Instagram feed- @art_n_people?
I use @ art_n_people to share pictures of my new work, the painting process, my house/studio and my plants. It’s a little window to my world.
You draw many inspiration from nature a lot, why is that?
Nature is present throughout all of my work, and its presence and meaning has changed through time. For me it’s a place of discovery, adventure and wonder. Both my Tropical and Garden series are linked to childhood experiences, and so they could be related to the concept of Lost Paradise. A safe place to retrieve when the chaos of this world swallows you.
Can you explain a little bit more of your painting/art process?
I paint with gouache and acrylics on paper. I use a lot of archive photographs from my trips to botanical gardens and keep a big number of plant books and encyclopedias to feed my imagination.
What advice would you give people who wants to be a professional illustrator/painter?
Create a routine, be consistent, don’t paint or draw only when you feel “inspired”. Create short term goals and try to stick to them. Look at other artist’s work. Choose a theme you ‘re interested in and develop a series. Be persistent.
What is your favorite plant and why?
It’s really hard to choose one… and it changes all the time, but right now I’m in love with the calathea plant in all its variations, which are many, I love the colors, the green and the purples and the deep pink stripes, just ovely… and they’re great to paint!
Do you have a “green thumb”?
I’m afraid I don’t! I have many, many plants at home and I absolutely adore them, but they are alive and growing beautifully thanks to my husband. He takes great care of them and leaves very precise watering instructions whenever he’s away…
Any plant care tips you can share?
don’t overwater…that’s all I know…!
What tops your houseplant wish list?
Favorite hobby: dance
Favorite television show: stranger things
Favorite food: any kind of pasta
Favorite weekend activity: long lazy breakfast, spending time with my little son, going on day trips, spending time outdoor, painting.
Favorite home decor store: I don’t have a store I usually go, I prefer thrift shops and flea markets.
What’s a secret skill you have?
I can dance flamenco 😉
What’s the best present you’ve given or received?
My husband is the best at surprising me every birthday with beautiful and alternative Art books. I definitely need more shelves…
If your space was on fire, what’s the first thing you’d grab to save?
I guess you’re talking about material stuff…so, my paintings and my hardrives, oh and my greencard!
What’s on your to-do list today?
I’ll be participating of the Renegade Craft Fair in a few days so most of my list today is related to that: I print all my illustrations myself, so…. PRINT, PRINT, PRINT. Other than that, I will finish hand painted totes, ship orders, check paper and ink supply, follow up on Emails and buy groceries and bread.
What’s next for @art_n_people?
More paintings and some collaborations with fashion brands.
Thank you so much, Laura!
P.S Find more of our tastemaker series! Including a plant artist, @teenytinyterra, who can build a terrarium in 24 seconds, and a time-lapse master, @houseplantjournal, who captures plants’ nastic movements in 24 hours.