I have always admired art, design and craftsmanship. I'm a fan of all forms of expression and design from architecture to visual merchandising.
Who am I and what gives me the right to claim I know what 'good design' or 'art' is?
When it comes to formal education, I have an undergraduate degree from the University of California at Berkeley in a double major of both Fine Art and Art History. In the fine art program at Cal, I specialized in print-making and intaglio. I was taught by some of the most respected contemporary artists today. Christopher Brown, George Miyasaki and others.
Regarding my art history degree, I was schooled in the everything from the cave paintings at Lascaux to the critical art theorists of today.
But that's not where my 'art' education ends. I then went on to receive yet another bachelors degree in Advertising Design at one of the most prestigious art/business schools in the country, the Pasadena Art Center College of Design. Here I studied alongside some of the greatest talents in automotive design to film direction. Several of the most respected still photographers, package designers, fine artists and transportation designers are graduates from ACCD.I was flattered and honored that as an alum, I also taught advertising design there for 8 years.
That explains my 'formal' education.
Many people believe the 'school of life' is the way for one to learn and I do not disagree. Formal educational institutions aside, being exposed to different people, different ideas and different experiences open our minds and our hearts. Which is why I have been blessed in that regard as well.
My grandmother was an advertising illustrator for department store fashions in her early twenties and continued to draw and paint and even taught watercolor painting in her eighties. At her death at age 97, she was still a practicing water colorist.
My parents are avid art enthusiasts. In addition to collecting art and opaline glass, my mother was a docent at SF MOMA and is very knowledgable herself. My father has always seen the beauty in design and his surroundings.
My older sister is married to one of today's most respected figurative painters in the SF Bay Area. Their house has been featured in magazines because of its unusual and outstanding design.
My younger sister, an incredibly bright and creative MD in San Francisco, has redesigned her own Bay Area home with her husband and they own a hip gym in Berkeley called Happy Hour Fitness.
I have lived and worked in the following cities: San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, Detroit and Seattle exposing me to different attitudes, styles and values. I have shopped EVERYWHERE from the Mall of the Americas to Shanghai Tang's luxury store in hong kong.
So, with all that education I opened an ebay store and an etsy store?? Not quite. Although selling and buying on ebay/etsy is both fun and addicting, I actually have a profession that is directly related to all of this.
Yes, I design and make jewelry. And soap. But those are just hobbies.
For the past 23 years I have been on the creative side of the tv and print advertising business. I have produced work on several major accounts from luxury cars to IKEA. This time consuming, competitive field is something I absolutely love and I am blessed that my job is also my hobby. It is the reason I have lived in many places and am knowledgeable about many products from popular consumer goods to niche brands.
Please visit my blog, If It's Hip, It's Here to learn more and see what's hip every day!
**Please note: I am NOT Laura Sweet of Laura Sweet Design. To see my design work, web work and advertising portfolio please visit www.laurasweet.com.**