Meet the Artist – Lori Bentley

Inspired by Karin Panino’s Friend meet Friend series on Facebook (thank you Karin), this is the first in a series of Meet the Creatives posts.

It was only when I decided to try my hand at painting that I realised how exposed you feel when sharing your creative work. It’s very personal and quite often there’s a degree of emotional investment in the project. The creative people in this series have one thing in common – they have inspired me, taught me, or fuelled my creativity in some way.

Lori Bentley – illustrator and graphic designer.
(and sometime set designer, past actress, and word craft expert)

I have no idea how Lori gets her inspiration. From the outside it seems like magic. She just seems to see the world in a different way. She does this with pictures and with words. I’ve had the experience of telling Lori I’m looking for a name for a blog and, sometimes within minutes, she pings back a list of good ideas – at least one of which will be truly inspired. I’ve described what attributes I want in a business logo and she produces a first draft that fits the bill perfectly. I’ve sometimes wondered if that’s partly because she knows me so well, but I think there’s far more to it. She just has an amazing way of being able to articulate – in words and in images.

I’ve watched pictures emerge from the end of her pencil within minutes as she sketches out an idea. When we were in our teens on holiday, she would create fantastic cartoon pictures of us all. I can still see the mad mop of curls that represented me. Perhaps I should use that as the picture on my Facebook profile.

She’s the first person I turn to if I want an honest evaluation of one of my paintings. And she always gives me great advice. I know that she’ll see something in it that I haven’t noticed, or make a suggestion for something that will either improve the picture she’s reviewing for me, or make me try something different the next time around. I am enormously grateful the generosity of her insights – they are so valuable.

I am thrilled by the fact that Lori’s first book illustration commission has led on to more of these sort of projects – it’s just the perfect job for her. It ticks all the right boxes:

  • Fantastic imagination – tick.
  • Love of books – tick. (She reads books faster than just about anyone I know).
  • Ability to visualise a scene – tick.
  • A bucketload of artistic talent – tick.

I can see I’m going to have to spend more time shopping on Amazon for books that have been illustrated by Lori Bentley. I think it’s time Amazon included illustrators in their search criteria. But, given that you can’t do a search by book illustrator – Here’s the link to The Secret of the Sacred Scarab on Jacket flap, on Amazon.com, and on Amazon.co.uk.

And here’s the new book cover Lori has designed.

Lori’s blog can be found at Lori Bentley’s Art
Follow Lori on Twitter at @LoriBeeArt

I must now declare an interest – Lori is my sister. I think that probably just means I am uniquely qualified to write about her creativity. I’ve seen it develop over Lori’s lifetime.

Meet my fabulously creative sister.

 

 

4 thoughts on “Meet the Artist – Lori Bentley

  1. What a heartfelt piece – thanks for sharing that V – hope that MY kids will share such sibling pride one day. Yes, Lori is a spontaneous creative which I admire more than a thoughtful, studied, seventy visual diaries sort of artist. Her mind, which I am re-discovering (again, thank you Facebook) is a treasure of Jack Out-of-the-Box moments. Creative Vitamin B shots. I think this is going to be a metaphor morning…

    1. Thanks Karin, I am very very grateful for Facebook – and the chance to reconnect… I read your posts and visualise you as a wandering scribe – you seem to have so many projects on the go. I will attempt to live up to the jack-in-the-box moments : )

  2. Love you too, sis! I am sitting here with a massive lump in my throat, blinking back the tears. I love that black and white photo – pretty much exemplifies our relationship. Vandy was the big sister who probably saved me from being run-over or abducted as a child when my wierd brain was on Planet Lori and nowhere near connected to the world. She offers the best advice, is always able to supply the answer to website questions and can be relied on to provided a refreshing dose of reality when I need it most (I call them ‘virtual slaps’).
    And I wish we lived closer to each other : (
    Oh yes – I am in awe of Vandy’s particular brand of creativity – so the feelings are mutual!

    1. I thought I would hold off including the bit about you driving me nuts when you got lost in dream world with one sock half on, and 5 minutes to get out of the door to get to school. ;-D

      I’m looking forward to the next book!

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