Author Archives: Laurie

Deafies: Portraits of Deaf and Hard of Hearing Individuals

I was inspired by Colin Davidson’s Jerusalem series, where he painted portraits of 12 individuals who lived and worked in the city of Jerusalem, with different backgrounds, cultures and traditions. His Silent Testimony is another series of 18 people who are connected by their experiences of loss through the Irish Troubles. David J. Kassan was another inspiration, as he is currently working on a project called the Edut Project in which he and two others captures and tell the Holocaust survivors’ stories through paintings, written profiles and short films.

With these two influences in mind, I plan to paint portraits of 10 D(d)eaf individuals as they tell us about themselves through ASL. My process is to videotape them as they tell us a little bit about themselves, and their experiences interacting/communicating with the hearing society. The videos will serve both as a reference source for the paintings, and to create a short film to accompany the paintings during exhibitions.

Also as part of this series, I plan to paint ASL signs as it pertains to Deafness.



This body of works inspired by landscapes of the places I have visited. I explore the colour, lines and form of the sights and the memories of the locations.


I am available for portrait commissions.

My method includes working from both live sitting and photographs taken by me. Ideally, the live sitting would take two or three hours, but sometimes if we are short for time, we can work with one hour of live sitting where I will take photographs, and then use the photograph as a reference.

If working from life is not possible due to distance, I can work from photographs, as long as the photographs are not professionally taken (the photographer retains the copyright of the image, and I respect copyrights).

The first two portrait samples are an example of seated portraits, and the third portrait are an example of working from a photograph and incorporating imaginative elements. I can do pet portraits as well.

My pricing varies depending on the finished portrait size and surface. These are typical rates I charge for a single sitter.

  • 9″ x 12″ – $300
  • 11″ x 14″ – $450
  • 16″ x 20″ = $725

If you have specific size requirements, or would like to have more than one person in a portrait, please contact me for a quote.

I also do quick studies and draw portraits in graphite on paper – prices vary depending on size, beginning at $100 for an 8″ x 10″ archival paper. Contact me for a quote.


Always learning

As an artist you never stop learning. You’re always trying new things, new colours. This is black. I almost never use black because, well, instructors have carried on the old mantra that originated with the Impressionists. It clued in that maybe they’ve never learned how to use black effectively either.

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A Moment of Clarity

The latest piece in this series is called A Moment of Clarity.

My studio mate, Kevin, suggested that for a contrast, invert the audiology test results so that the anyone above the lines is murky, muddled and vague, and make my area clear, bright and resolute. It was an interesting thought, so I played with that concept, and have come to this result.

I have a tendency to look down, rather than look up, when I’m walking. Avoiding eye contact with people, and watch where I step. So I’m quite familiar with the surface, the pavement, the grass, the pebbles, and so on. But every once a while, I come across a puddle. A reminder to look up once a while, and let sun shine on my face.

A Moment of Clarity
A Moment of Clarity, 3′ x 3′ Oil on Canvas

Solo Exhibition at The Beaumont Gallery

The Beaumont Gallery presents
by Laurie M. Landry
Vancouver artist Laurie Landry explores the sense of isolation that comes from living with disability. Incorporating everyday sounds, sound waves, audiology test results and written words, these paintings are the result of this exploration.

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Replacement sounds

I was talking with someone who is a video producer, explaining to him the idea behind my video shorts. The process of isolating the video from the sound.

He thought it was cool, but he suggested replacing the audio with the “sound of silence”, as it’s considered an industry standard to replace it with the “sound of silence”.

This is where I thought the conversation became interesting.

He could not imagine not hearing a sound. Not white noise, nothing. He couldn’t grasp the idea that there is no aural replacement. He explained to me, if he were to watch my videos and if there’s no replacement sound, he becomes acutely aware of the sounds of his own surroundings. The sounds of whatever room he’s in, the sound of the fridge, a fan, outside traffic, etc.

I tried to explain to him, that when I take off my hearing aid, it’s… There is no sound to replace it. It’s space. For me, there is no replacement. I either have my hearing aid in and I can hear ambiance and everyday sound; or I take it out, and there’s nothing. There is no replacement. I do not switch over to inside noise. The only sound I could possibly hear, with or without the hearing aid, is tinnitus, if I’m coming down with a cold, or a mental sound echo from a particularly loud environment, such as music concerts, loud movies, etc.

He can’t imagine not hearing anything, not even replacement sound. I can’t imagine hearing replacement sounds.


Wrapping up

My Cultivate project is coming to an end this week. Here are my thoughts:

I will miss the extra space. It is nice to be able to spread out, have a small drawing video editing area separate from the painting area. At the end of this week, I’ll have to contract to my old space, and I will feel the difference. It will be too small. I will have to consider the following changes:

  • Create a separate drawing area away from my painting area. This may be by way of acquiring a drafting table at home. This might work because often I feel the urge to draw when I’m not in the studio, but not having a dedicated space at home often means I don’t.
  • Look for a larger studio elsewhere, either in the same location, or at a different area of the town.
  • Make better use of my current space.

I learned a lot about myself, in terms of work habits, what works, what doesn’t work. How I work, and how I can change some bad habits and reinforce good habits. Finding a structured time that worked for me allowed me to be able to turn on and off “work brain” and “create brain”, and will make it easier for me to apply that to the real world, so to speak. I work to pay the rent, and then once I’m finished working for the day, I put it aside and switch to create, and show up. I have learned how to discipline myself in terms of showing up, even when there are days where I’d rather just sit at home and relax. Being an artist is work, and I need to show up even if it’s not intuitive.

Art-making is dynamic. I cannot force creating into a neatly defined box. I cannot think: I’m going to make A this way, because to try and force something it doesn’t’ want be will end up an exercise futility. There are going to be pieces that will end up “failures” – except I don’t think of them as failures. I think of them as unsolved problems – and the best way to deal with that, for me, is to put them aside. I will come back to them later, and I may have a fresh perspective, but I cannot force it to happen if it doesn’t want to happen.

I started off being very rigid about things; I felt that I had to do this, and this, and this, in this way and in that manner. Then I realized that I was hating it, that I dreaded meeting with the mentor because I felt that I disappointed her if I wasn’t doing it right, and thus disappointing myself, and the world at large. I still feel this way sometimes.

Talking to other artists who have worked on grant projects helped me a great deal. The most important thing someone told me was that I was the boss. Not the grant provider. I do provide a report, but in the end, I’m the one who set the ideas, the visions, and thus I answer to myself. Not to the mentor, not to the grant provider (to a point), and not to the world at large.

This is a very lonely process. It can be very good and it can be very distressing. I am by nature a people pleaser that I forget in the end, people really don’t care how you get there. All they care is you’re there.

I hated talking about my disability. I’ve had to open up and be vulnerable. I hated it. I hated that I cried almost on a daily basis during this project. But I’m also very happy on a daily basis, because it’s a release of tension I have within myself.

This body of paintings is coming to a natural end. I have 3 more paintings to work on, and they are all almost finished; and I have 3 more paintings that I’ve put aside because I have not found the solutions to the problems yet. They are opening new doors for further explorations. I learned new tools such as video editing for audio visual works; incorporating my computer skills I have to date into creating video art. I have new ideas that I can’t wait to explore, which involves figurative drawings.

I am very appreciative of this grant, and the opportunities it allowed me, in terms of getting materials to work with; resources to rely on; mentor, and consultants that helps me get further ahead and outside my own box. It has certainly created some potential new opportunities elsewhere, and connected me with people who have shared with me their thoughts, their experiences, and their knowledge. My vision has been broadened, my ideas reinforced by actual data and experiences of others. Happy coincidences such as creating a very different painting (Rhapsody), and having it reinforced by a scientific study in which a microcamera was placed inside a singer’s throat to record what happens with the voicebox. Exploring a world of aural art of which I knew nothing before.

Communication is fascinating. It breaks isolation. It shines a light on darkness. Sometimes it’s someone or something shining a light on something. But most of the time, I’m the one shining the light on my own darkness and finding something incredible there.

Thank you for following my process.


We acknowledge the support of the Canada Council for the Arts, which last year invested $153 million to bring the arts to Canadians throughout the country.

Nous remercions le Conseil des arts du Canada de son soutien. L’an dernier, le Conseil  a investi 153 millions de dollars pour mettre de l’art dans la vie des Canadiennes et des Canadiens de tout le pays.

Published Apr 26, 2016