Interview w/ Connor Lawson

Artist, Connor Lawson creates trippy glitch aesthetic art. Connor is based in Santa Rosa, Ca.

What does art mean to you?

Art, to me, is a window into the soul of the creator, as well as for the viewers. Not only does the creator expose themselves in the process, but the viewer also infuses their own self onto what they are viewing.

What does your work aim to say?

There is more to the world than what the naked eye is showing you. There are entire worlds of existence beyond the edges of our imagination.

Who are your biggest influences?

Matt Mills, Ras Al Hague, and Teyleen. All 3 are digital artists, and all three I have become friends with.

Ras initiated my appreciation and desire to make glitch aesthetic art.

Matt Mills was the first and largest artist I looked up to, and was an absolute gem when I contacted him, asking for advice or pointers, and his style definitely influenced mine.

Teyleen also helped me out a lot when I was first starting out, and we share a similar ocular condition.

What work do you enjoy doing the most?

That’s a really hard choice! But I would say that I enjoy Glitch Aesthetic Art more. Experimenting with the different styles and looks available feels a lot more free form and wild.

How did you get into digital art?

I have been interested in digital art for a while, but I only recently started really trying to learn it and advance my skills in it as a career. I was nearing the end of a very toxic relationship when I found it, and making it really helped me cope with it and ultimately led to me ending it.

What programs do you use?

Glitch Lab, Mirror Lab, and Chroma Lab on the Android OS

Photoshop and After Effects CC

Filter Forge and Reactor plugins for PS

What has inspired your trippy art style?

When I was around 19-21, I actually got pretty deep into addiction to a psychedelic stimulant called 2C-E. It was a very impactful period of my life, and since then, I have had permanent HPPD, or Hyper Persisting Psychedelic Disorder, in which I experience moments of lucid, albeit subtle, open eyed visuals, and experience closed eye visuals most of the time. I lucked out in that my case isn’t too serious, but it has been as much a distraction as it has been an inspiration.

Do you do any traditional art?

Yes, I’m also a classically trained black & white film photographer, although I use digital cameras nowadays to shoot events for my friends.

What is your artistic process right now?

Well, it is a bit varied sometimes. As I’m still learning a fair amount, and with so many different styles at my disposal, I find myself engaging in art and starting a piece in different ways. Sometimes I use a generated image, sometimes I start with a photograph. Then from there, I will either work on it in the Lab apps and bounce an image between them multiple times to layer effects, then to Photoshop where I will enhance the resolution and make further edits using Filter Forge and Photoshop features. Sometimes, If I’m feeling up to it, I will make a visual loop of pieces in After Effects, and have recently learned how to make audio reactive loops in After Effects.

How do you seek out opportunities?

I talk to people about art. I go out to events and try to get in contact with organizers about having a table for vending, or make posts about having open space for commissions. You have to take the initiative, not every opportunity will land in your lap.

How do you put yourself in a creative mood when you need it?

Personally, I like to listen to music to get the juices flowing, but nothing, for me, beats a low dose psychedelic experience. I have always enjoyed them (too much in the past but I’ve gained self control since), and they show me things that really inspire me to keep creating

What advice would you give digital artists who are just starting out?

Keep it up. If you ever get stuck, look up a youtube video. Use the filters available in photoshop, they make workflow so much easier and faster. Don’t be afraid to experiment. you might stumble into a technique that looks good and is easy for you to use.

What inspires you?

Music, psychedelics, community, and art itself.

Describe a real life situation that inspired you.

Coming to terms with the fact that Love isn’t the same as compatibility, and the day I abandoned the regret I had held onto for a year, birthed one of my favorite pieces.

Any last words you would like to say to the world today?

Thank you Aim Hover for the interview!

To anyone reading this, know that you are loved, you are appreciated, and that you are capable of greatness.

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