We spoke with artist Carina Liebmann, New York native, current LA resident, and our August 2017 Artist of the Month. When Carina is not being a jack-of-all-trades at the current beauty company she works for, she is off creating stunning visual pieces that are sure to catch anyone’s eye. Read on to learn more about Carina’s work and her aspirations below!
Who are you and what do you do?
Hi! I’m Carina. I grew up outside of New York City.
I am a graphic designer at a beauty product company in Los Angeles. I work on packaging design, web content, marketing strategy, and I run social media for the brand. In my free time I take the photos which you can find on my Instagram, often with the help of my art director boyfriend who shares my aesthetic. (See his portfolio, here). I started taking the photos because I wanted an excuse to retouch more, and it’s a good outlet to do whatever I want. I love balancing marketing with creativity at work.
What’s your background?
My dad is a PhD carrying computer engineer, my mom is a fine artist who studied art restoration in Italy. I grew up with equal parts computer programs and art supplies.
By 11 I was editing my shaky home videos with bad cuts, confusing soundtracks and random animation overlays. In high school I took graphic design courses. At the same time I was taking fine art classes outside of school. I went to Pratt Institute in Brooklyn for the Advertising/Art Direction program. After college I started working as a junior art director at an ad agency in San Diego. I eventually moved to Los Angeles where I became an in-house designer at a beauty product company.
I love being an in-house designer because it allows me to really immerse myself in the brands, do the research, and have my ideas heard. If I am passionate about an idea, and present it with some research, then the company supports me in executing it.
Where are you currently located?
Los Angeles. I do best in around 80 degree weather.
Who are your favorite artist(s) or inspirations?
Salvador Dali was the first artist I got into as a kid. Now I usually look at photographers; Miles Aldridge, David LaChapelle, Terry Richardson, Arthur Belebeau, Helmut Newton, and Mario Testino are some of my favorites.
What kinds of message(s) to you want to send to your viewers?
With my personal work I get the most enjoyment out of making uncomfortable things visually pleasing. I like when someone wants to hate one of my photos, but can’t. Pretty is just pretty and nice to look at, pretty but uncomfortable lets you learn something about yourself. I also think my interest in brand positioning and marketing plays a role too. If I can make what should be ugly into something pretty, and get you to like it, that’s fun to me.
What is your most important artist tool? Is there something you can’t live without?
Photoshop. I was 13 when I was first introduced to Photoshop and I literally started tearing up from excitement. I still use Photoshop daily and I love it. LOVE it.
Where is your favorite place to create?
At home, which is currently a tiny studio apartment I share with my boyfriend. Good thing we get along. I am a major homebody.
What are your artistic pet peeves?
Every time I thought I had a good answer for this I started feeling so hypocritical! I guess an appropriate cop out answer would be over thinking things.
How long have you been pursuing your art?
My entire life, once basic motor skills were developed. In my diaper-wearing-years, my mom would spread out giant sheets of paper on the kitchen floor and let me finger paint, which usually meant I would end up covered in paint. That was the start.
What are your short term and long terms goals?
Short term, I want to develop more skills in UX and web development. Long term I am pretty boring; it’d be nice to have a family, have a decent home, have time to do some personal projects, and have a stable way to afford that life. The skills expected of a designer are constantly changing and growing, so I try to stay open to the path my career could take and want to learn new skills as they become more relevant.
To view more of Carina’s work, check out her website and follow her instagram to keep up to date with her artistry!
Want to purchase items from Carina’s feed? Shop her work, here.