Laurie Brainerd is a full-time studio artist. She began creating art in 2005 after careers in corporate accounting and life coaching. She has studied art at the Southwest School of Art and with Jane Dunnewold in her Art Cloth Mastery Program.
Brainerd's process begins with white cloth. She dyes the cloth in a painterly fashion and then stitches on it to create work rich in color, texture, and emotion. Brainerd has exhibited nationally; her work has been published in several books; and recently she completed a commission for the Baptist Health System.
My current bodies of work, the Happiness Block series and Source series, are simultaneously created and directly relate to my spiritual journey. It is my intention to work with uncomplicated methods that produce interesting and beautiful results. I want the process to be narrow enough to allow me to work deeply, but broad enough to allow for endless variety.
My intention to work happily is fulfilled in the Happiness Block series. I apply dye as a paint directly onto silk/cotton fabric. The quilt blocks represent any blocks of our lives that we learn to align, occasionally eliminate, and integrate on the path of choosing and finding happiness.
Through the Happiness Block pieces I am discovering that there is an even deeper quest - a quest for an integrated life with Source energy. In the Source series, I capture excess dye left from creating the circles that become Happiness Blocks. Ethereal secondary images are created through this indirect painting process. I can direct it, but not control it.
Symbolism is important in both series of works. Circles represent source energy, being enclosed, inclusiveness and boundaries, and when connected - safety. But my circles are also about adding and revealing layers; building on knowledge and growth.
Squares, blocks and grids are my attempt to understand, seek safety, and stay attached to what I can see with my eyes. But this organization also allows my brain to compartmentalize, process, and be present.