Raised in Louisiana with two artistic parents, it’s no surprise that Laura Bellone developed a passion for art and painting at an early age. Trained as a landscape architect, Laura continued to paint as a hobby until she felt inspired to open Petite Louisiane – small, affordable art that can fit anywhere in a home or office. Laura paints what she feels is the most nostalgic connection for her and her clients: the sights and sounds of beautiful Southern Louisiana. From boiled seafood to swamps and cypress trees, Laura’s art evokes what it feel’s like to be a part of the rich culture of southern Louisiana. We are excited to introduce you to her and hope that you will pick up a copy of the updated RRR III and one of Laura’s prints at Hollydays.
A little Q & A with Laura:
Where did you attend college and what did you study?
LSU, College of Landscape Architecture, BLA 2006
How did you get started as an artist?
I started taking art classes in high school but have always had a passion for drawing and painting even at a young age. Both of my parents are teachers but also have an artistic side, so I grew up around the arts. Petite Louisiane was created a few years ago when I started painting miniature paintings as gifts. My friends encouraged me to sell them at a local Mid-city event and it just took off from there.
What inspires you?
My surroundings: nature and the sights of everyday Louisiana life. The illustrations for the cookbook depict iconic landmarks or scenes from southern Louisiana. Everyone has a nostalgic connection to at least one of those places, so I wanted to help bring those memories to life. I love to hear the stories clients tell me as they are buying or ordering a piece. They will walk up and pick up a painting and tell me how it reminds them of a family home, grandparent, or just a great childhood memory. I also keep affordability in mind; I want everyone to be able to enjoy the paintings so the majority of my original works ranges from $25- $50. It’s bright pop of color that fits on a desk or shelf!
How did you decide you wanted to partner with the Junior League to provide the artwork for RRR?
A friend approached me with the idea for the project and I thought it would be a good way to challenge myself as an artist. Once I spoke to League members about the theme they wanted to portray, I instantly knew the style of sketches I wanted to create for the book
Do you have a favorite piece of art from the cookbook? If so, what is it and why?
It is hard to pick just one. I feel like every time I finished one if became my favorite until I completed the next one. I pushed myself a little further with each image.
What are some of your favorite dishes to make?
My favorite dish, is one that I am still trying to perfect, my great grandmother’s Spaghetti and Meatballs. She taught my grandmother, and my grandmother taught my mom and her sister, and then taught me and my sister. I haven’t quite gotten it just right yet, but I’m close. All of my favorite dishes are ones from my childhood, from homemade baked macaroni to roast and daube.
Who taught you to cook and what are some of your favorite memories around the kitchen?
My mom, dad and grandmother taught me how to to cook. My grandmother taught us the recipes passed down from her mother. My dad liked to create dishes on the fly. He rarely followed a recipe and went with his gut on what went into the dish, it was always delicious and sometimes rather creative in presentation.
What is your favorite River Road Recipe?
We hope you have enjoyed reading more about Laura and viewing some of her incredible works of art. Visit her website and Instagram to see more. Don’t forget Hollydays is just around the corner!