Leslie L. - Statement Rewrite

Being the child of an immigrant mother and a father who was in sales, I grew up in an environment where it felt like life was constantly changing and I was always in motion. Every year seemed to bring some sort of dramatic change or upheaval. Routine was transient. Each change of scene felt like an opportunity to reinvent myself. There were always new possibilities to be had somewhere else. This restlessness demonstrates itself in my work: I like to explore different ways and means of creating art. The restlessness and my curiosity for exploring new possibilities has led me to filling my toolbox with a wide array of tools and mediums and experiences. I use those various implements to fuel and guide my art.

My work usually begins with a camera (either film or digital). From there I move to the computer where I choose a group of images to work from, usually based on a theme or visual element. I may manipulate the images in Photoshop or Lightroom - pulling out elements, combining pictures to make something new. I print the digital results on media like fabric, paper, and transparencies and then, because I like to have my hands on something physical (pushing pixels doesn’t cut it) I often build onto the surface of the printed media. I love to layer and to add texture to my pieces, using the original print as a template or a map of possibilities. My layering process usually involves using embroidery, the sewing machine, pen, wax, or paints either alone or in combination to build up something more tactile. I want the viewer to want to feel the texture of the work.

My subject matter is a reflection of both my history and my working style. I focus on movement and change, captivity and freedom, boom and bust. Recently, I have concentrated on abandoned places. They speak to me of dreams and aspirations that were left behind and perhaps forgotten. Structures that were once homes become ghosts - silent reminders of past residents who moved on to another place in search of another dream.