23 January 2012

handmade // nan lawson illustrations

When I stumbled across Nan Lawson's shop in my search for fellow Angelenos to feature in January, I knew I'd struck gold. Nan's illustrations are simply awesome: charming, quirky, a little bit hipster, and a whole lot of style for perfect home decor. Self-described "cute, quirky, nerdy" art in Nan's shop is great for any gift-giving occasion, especially if you know someone who's moving (HINT, HINT!).

The perfect art gift for your favorite photographer. :)
Nan Lawson (the artist's nickname, Nan, plus her middle name, Lawson) is influenced by a variety of artists and crafters all around her; she's inspired by different people all the time.

"I find myself inspired by so many things!" Nan told me. "I think I'm most inspired by fashion lately. I've been drawing a lot of characters and paying attention to the details of their clothing a lot. I love experimenting with my own personal clothing style, but drawing can take my ideas to whole new level."

Nan shacks up in Silverlake (super-cool neighborhood in L.A.) with her boyfriend and two kitties. Her work has appeared in tons of places online and in print, including Apartment Therapy, Decor8, and the illustrations included in the book Geek Girls Unite.

Reading Nan's response to my inquiry about her work space makes me wish I could draw: "I draw sitting on my couch, usually with a cup of coffee and some music or a movie playing. I work all around my apartment," she said. I'm jealous; it sounds relaxing! "For printing and shipping orders I have a small office nook, but I also take up most of the dining room table when I have a big shipment to go out." (Same here!)

I also wanted to know what Nan's personal favorite piece might be. "It changes all the time," she told me, "but right now it's my newest print called 'Music Is All Around.'"

Nan's current personal favorite: "Music is All Around"

Since this is my blog, after all, I now reserve the right to showcase MY favorites from Nan's shop!  I love "The Piemaker" as I presume it is an homage to Ned from "Pushing Daisies," a fabulous show cancelled before it should have been!

"The Piemaker" from Nan Lawson

Nan does a ton of other pop culture reference drawings, too!  What I actually really enjoy is that she doesn't explain her inspiration in her Etsy shop listings, which means you have to already know what she's alluding to (or make an educated guess).  My personal faves (I'm going to give away some of Nan's references here!) are Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, The Royal Tenenbaums, and The Life Aquatic (Steve Zissou!).

I have to list this one, too, per my obsession with typewriters (I might snap this one up for display in my new home office!):

"Grunge Typewriter" illustration from Nan Lawson

Nan also does custom portraits, but she doesn't do them all the time; be sure to sign up for her newsletter if you're interested in more info the next time Nan is accepting commissions for rad portraits like this one!

Awesome custom portraits by Nan Lawson -- sign up for more info to get one of your own!

Now, in Nan's own words...
What is your most cherished possession?
This might sound lame, but it's probably my Macbook Pro.  I use it all the time.  I run my business from it, I create my artwork with it, and I've connected with so many other artists through it.

If Hollywood made a movie about you, who would be cast in the lead role as you?
One of my favorite actresses is Carey Mulligan.  I'd love to see her play me; she'd have to put on a few pounds though. :)

Where would you like to be in five years? Ten years?
Five years from now I'd love to be illustrating for magazines and book covers. I think that's where I would like to see my career heading.  But, I'd be very happy if I was still running a successful Etsy shop and living off of my art the way I am now.  In ten years I'd love to have written and illustrated a book of my own!  But for right now I am happy to live in the moment, because who knows how long this will last?


Thank YOU, Nan!  Check out Nan Lawson's shop (you WON'T be disappointed -- she has something for EVERYONE!) and her other places in cyberspace:

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