Online Feature // Alana Ladson

Introduce yourself, tell us about you & your creative genre?
Alana Ladson, part time unicorn, full time badass. Jk. But not really. I was born in New Haven, CT and now I humbly reside in Brooklyn. I've been drawing since I was 2 or 3 years old. I was always frustrated at a lack of people of color in art and media, ever since I was a little girl. So I aim to change that with my own art and my own style. If you don't see what you wanna see from the world, you have to create that vision yourself. Make it real. That's where I'm coming from when I draw. I'm bring my dreams and my vision to life and hopefully someone will be able to relate. As for genre, I don't like to classify!

What is your creative process?
I used to daydream a lot as a kid. I still do that now. Ideas come to me as I'm working with my third graders, taking a shower, dancing, watching TV. In addition, I have all these scenarios in my head. They're like movies, starring myself and having my dream life but often my ideas come from those too.They change as I get older, but I find myself feverishly scrambling to find a piece of paper or other scrap to draw my idea on. My days are so full, I'm liable to forget, so I make sure I don't.

How would you describe your style?
It's really eclectic! Peaceful, Unapologetically Afrocentric, Ethereal. I paint goddesses: regular and fantasy women that own themselves, no matter their hair or skin color.

What inspires you?
God, Sailor Moon, my character Fat Unicorn, mermaids, unicorns, mythical creatures, colors. Little boys and girls who look at art and picture books and find no ethnic or curly haired characters. People who are looking to find beauty in simplicity and love, which i hope people get from looking at my work.

What do you hope people see in your art?
Simplicity and love! Whimsy, fun. Also peace, tranquility- sensuality in some cases, depending on the work. I always have a hard time choosing! There's also mystery to feel- what is that person in the picture thinking about? Why are they posing this way? it's fun to think of the real story and maybe make some up too. That's part of the beauty of art.

What would be your ideal project?
My dream job would be animating kids' movies and illustrating children's books!

What is your favorite medium to work with?
I love acrylic paint. Acrylic is literally like a trusty old friend. It's always useful. And it's quick and it's colorful. I like to paint between breaks at work or anything else, so it's very useful when it comes to that!

How does your life affect your art?
I've been through a few things and they hurt, but there's no need to live in the past. I want my anyone who looks at my art to see happiness, love and peace now. I want them to have the things that I didn't have at one point, and feel alright with the universe- even if it's for that one second.

How do/did you develop your style?
I like to take random risks. When I feel myself getting to comfortable, I say "Well why don't we try this pose instead? What about these colors?" I'll push myself to do something new. I get frustrated rather quickly sometimes, but if 1 attempt at something new works out, it's growth, which is what I'm constantly striving for. Complacency just stinks and I like to break out of it in my own way.

In your body of work, what are you most proud of?
There are three pieces: The first is a picture with a golden afro girl with daisies covering her breasts. It was the first thing I painted after years of being too afraid to paint and being depressed. Second, is a picture of a happy family with a new addition on the way. And the third is my most recent: A girl with a purple mohawk and glasses. An irritated nerd. Like me!

Where can people find and follow you?
Twitter: @caringqueen892
Tumblr: angelfire892
Instagram: @alanaladsonart
Easy: etsy.com/shop/alanapaintseverythin
Facebook: facebook.com/alanaladsonart

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