Updated: Mar 7, 2021
Contemporary with depth and hints of whimsy – that’s how I would describe the work of Lorra Kurtz. Lorra is an artist living in Alpharetta, Georgia who focuses on encaustic and acrylic mixed media. She is represented by two of my favorite galleries (dK Gallery in Marietta, GA, and High Country Art in Blue Ridge, GA) Her artwork has also been featured on HGTV so you can bet that I was eager to chat with this talented lady.
Taking a cue from her travels to Italy, she mixed up a couple of negronis. This colorful cocktail consists of one part gin, one part vermouth Rosso and one part Campari (an Italian aperitif) with an orange slice garnish. After a quick stir and a toast, we sat down to discuss all things art.
Starting off in finance, Lorra’s career didn’t take a creative turn until after her twin sons were born. That’s when she turned her sites on interior design which soon led to her passion - painting. Hummingbirds are very prominent in her artwork and so I had to ask about their significance. She explained that her father, who has since passed on, loved hummingbirds. Soon after she painted her first hummingbird, it quickly sold, and she felt certain that it was her father confirming her choice to pursue an artistic career path. She must be doing something right since her paintings were recently featured on the HGTV show “Bargain Mansions.” She shared how the opportunity came about and how she felt the moment her artwork appeared on national TV!
Next, Lorra took me down to her basement studio for a tour. I loved seeing her unique easel set-up which allows her to see multiple paintings at once. This is especially helpful when she’s working on a collection or small grouping since it's easier to see how they fit together and which ones may need more attention. She also showed me her “fun cart” full of mixed media supplies and even gave a demo on how to make a stencil. Another approach that she uses for her artwork is “creative play.” This is where she starts a new piece through an intuitive process; adding materials, paint, and marks without a specific plan in mind and then responds to what there. Lorra likes how this sets up a “jumping off” point for new ideas in her work. As she likes to say, "Sometimes there has to be a mess before the magic happens."
Be sure to watch our full conversation here. I know you are going to learn a lot from Lorra’s experience and her approach to the creative process, however, we need to get real for a sec. You may come for the inspiration, but you’ll stick around for the true star of the show, Bandit. This serious cutie patootie has no shame when it comes to stealing the spotlight from his mom. Finally, give Lorra a follow on Instagram and Facebook or visit her website to see more of her work.