Jessi van der Laan
Born in Colorado Springs and raised all over the country, artist Jessi van der Laan now lives in London, Ontario, Canada.
She came from a very science-centered family that also enjoyed art. As a family, they would go and visit art museums multiple times a month, mainly when they lived in Europe. Jessi started creating art at a young age, painting small canvases and pieces of paper as gifts for friends and family and as decorations for her house. When she was a sophomore in university, Jessi realized that she wanted to pursue an education in fine arts rather than her previously planned path of biology.
For a while, Jessi did not know where she drew her inspiration. After thinking about it, she figured out that it came from the previous experiences from coping with anxiety and depression. Because Jessi is creating art as a means of anxiety control, not all of her art follows a central theme, and her two preferred mediums have vastly different subjects.
Jessi’s prints are based around photos taken on her family’s many adventures across the country and Europe. Her paintings are centered around the events that caused her major depressive states, and they give her a chance to let go of them. Once finished, she can take a step back and realize that there is so much more to life than the events that she was so caught up in. Other pieces that she creates use bright and fun colors that make her feel happier when she happens to be in a sad mood for long periods.
Jessi thinks that art should be expressive and unique to the artist and that no artist should feel pressured to create in the popular style. She believes that they should want to create their art in their own unique style that they create over time.