Lauren feels inspired and content when she’s sitting in a park, looking at birds through a pair of binoculars, listening to folk music or sketching. However, she enjoys the vibrancy of city life, and is influenced by the Surrealist movement and by the artist Marcel Dzama. Lauren studied Fashion Communication with Promotion at Central Saint Martins, but decided illustration would be her career. Recent highlights include her illustrated series of cocktail recipe books with Running Press.
Lauren draws on cotton paper using a variety of 0.3 mechanical pencils. However, she also has a Wacom Cintiq tablet, which gives her an alternative way of sketching and working out her compositions. When she’s happy with something, she’ll print it out, trace it and rework it in pencil
The pencil is dominant in Lauren’s work, and with her incredible shading skills little or no color is needed. Her style often maintains a gentle warmth, despite that touch of the surreal. A brain-shaped soft ice cream, with a Flake, anyone?
Question: What drew you to illustration/design? Lauren: I've always loved creating, for as long as I can remember. I was a very shy child and used to sit quietly making and drawing things. I studied Fashion Promotion, and when I graduated, I decided to pursue illustration, as it just excited me more and felt right. Question: Do you have any formal design training? Lauren: Yes, I studied Fashion Promotion at Central Saint Martins. Question: Where are you originally from? Lauren: I was born in Tuscon, Arizona. I came to London when I was about 2 years old though so I don't remember it! I've never been back there since, so it's a bit of mystery to me. I call London my home. I grew up in Barnes, South-West London. Question: Where do you live now & what drew you there? Lauren: I live in Whitechapel. I moved over to East London when I was studying, because I loved it's creative environment and it's where I spent most of my time. Most of my friends live in East London too. Question: Where is your studio and can you describe it for me? Lauren: I work from home, in Whitechapel. I generally have a lot of 'things'! Like books, pictures, cameras and ornaments. But everything has its place and I always know where I've put something. I would call it organized chaos. Question: Describe the view from your studio window? Lauren: I love the view from my window! I live at the top of the house so I can see Canary Wharf, houses, a park and lots of trees. It's beautiful at all times of day, and I get the most of the natural light. Question: Who or What is your biggest inspiration? Lauren: My Mum. She has always told me that I can do whatever I want to in life, as long as it's what I love to do and it makes me happy. She's always given me great and honest advice and, annoyingly sometimes, she's right most of the time! Question: How do you get your ideas? Lauren: I tend to draw the things I love; such as nature and vintage illustrations of children for example. I also browse through other imagery from books or the Internet and that will inspire me too. Ideas can develop from something small and can change into something bigger and completely different.
Question: Do you collect anything? Lauren: Brooches; I don't wear jewellery but I'll almost always be wearing a brooch! Matches; I have a huge bowl of them. I also have a lot of berets! Pretty much one of every colour. But I don't really collect them; I just like them a lot! Question: Do you keep a scrapbook? Lauren: I used to keep folders of all the images that inspired me that I'd torn out from books and magazines. Now I keep a scrapfile on my computer instead. It's a sign of the times! Question: What are your interests outside of illustration? Lauren: I like to watch films. A couple of months ago I also got given a map of 'Untamed London' which shows places where nature still runs wild in the big city. I'm trying to make it every place that's listed on it. Question: Tell us about a favourite project you've recently completed. Lauren: The children's book, called 'But It's True' is probably the most satisfying project I've completed. Although it took a long time to do, having a book filled with my illustrations is a great achievement. Question: What would be your dream job/commission? Lauren: My dream job would be working for a big brand or company that I really respected, and that I was proud of. I would be delighted if Liberty wanted me to do something with them, as I've always loved their branding and get a little giddy in their fabric department! Question: If you could live anywhere, where would you go? Lauren: New York. I lived there for a few months and I loved it. It's like London, only everything is open later, it's smaller, taller, there's always new places to go, and the subway's open 24hrs. Question: If you could travel back in time which period would you visit & why? Lauren: I'd definitely go back to the late 1950's/early 60's. The clothes were amazing, the hair was amazing, and the music was amazing too. Question: If you could travel back in time, who would be the one person you would want to meet? Lauren: My Mum, at my age now.
The Sunday Times Magazine, Super Superficial, Step Art, Running Press, Penguin Young Readers Group, Angelina Tearoom, Elle MagazineFavourites
: The Scooter Caffe, near Waterloo Station, 132 Lower Marsh, London
: The Whitechapel Gallery
It's down the road, it's free, is not too big,
so I can wander in an out when I like, and it's got a lovely little shop
and restaurant too.
: Eggs on toast with chorizo and Reggae Reggae sauce on the side.
: White wine or tea, depending on the time of day of course!
: Pretty much every shop down Columbia Road.
It's a shame they're only open on Sundays.
: I never really follow blogs to be honest! I'm not a great fan of reading online.
I'd rather pick up a book