We had the good fortune of connecting with Lauri Koo and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Lauri, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
For me, I think of risk-taking as a catalyst for moving and growing and definitely being out of my comfort zone. I experienced a sense of this in childhood as I observed my surroundings from my own parents and their risk-taking decisions. As a result of moving numerous times during childhood, I think I adapted to different surroundings, people and events which allowed me to experience change on many levels without having a conscious choice. I believe it made me more adaptable and at the same time desiring to experience different directions, paths and careers of my own. At this time in my life, having had different career paths, I have come full circle back to the creative part of myself that I had always wanted to explore and hopefully, with more wisdom and experience. I think of the Paulo Coelho quote, “If it’s still in your mind it is worth taking the risk.”
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I create mostly in acrylic paint, however I do enjoy oils as well. I also have a passion for photography. My favorite subject of choice is my deep connection to nature and color. I love to merge the two together as much of my painting is inspired from photographs and places I have visited. I also enjoy creating paths, tunnels and portals in my pieces representing the different directions and paths taken in my own life. I enjoy creating a sense of depth and dimension, light and shadow, with a sense of fantasy or mystery that invites the viewer on a journey. I hope to convey in my work a sense of peace, upliftment, beauty and introspection.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I would take them to Boyce Thompson Arboretum for a full day of observing the amazing desert beauty and we’d hike Picket Post Mountain Trail. We would get dinner at Pita Jungle in Chandler and sit outside by the lake. The next day we would explore the Desert Botanical Gardens and eat at Green Restaurant and enjoy the evening at Tempe Town Lake. The next day we would head up to Payson to see the South Rim and enjoy a hike at Woods Canyon Lake and eat at El Rancho Mexican Restaurant. The final overnight trip would be up to Sedona to visit the beautiful sites of Cathedral Rock, downtown Sedona shops, lunch at the Enchantment Resort with a massage and dinner at Dahl & Di Luca Ristorante Italiano.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
There are so many wonderful people who have been part of my journey. My husband, family and friends have all been so supportive and encouraging. I also have to give much credit to the local art teachers, fellow colleagues and to the Sonoran Arts League, where I have met so many talented artists who have shared their stories, advice and mentorship through various meetings, events and one-on-one conversations. In particular, I must mention Kirby Plessas who created Curious Kirby for coaching artists and helping them become self-sustainable. She has kept the community together by facilitating weekly Zoom meetings that help artists to stay connected and sharing her wealth of experience and innovative techniques and content. You can check her out at www.curiouskirby.com.
James Koo, Glenna Bailey