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Artist in Residence Lisa Leick kayaking on Lake Twelve

Lisa Leick: Artist in Residence at Biehl Nature Preserve / Lake Twelve

11:25 am  |  Topics: featured artist


The Natural Realm presents Lisa Leick, who is among 11 artists participating in a year-long residency program called ARTservancy, a collaboration between Gallery 224 in Port Washington and the Ozaukee Washington Land Trust, River Revitalization Foundation, Milwaukee Area Land Conservancy, Tall Pines Conservancy, and Milwaukee County Parks Department. The mission of ARTservancy is to promote the visionary work of both the artists and conservationists. Each artist has selected a preserve to spend time in and to engage with.

Artist Statement by Lisa Leick

I should start with a disclaimer: I find it difficult to justify to myself why I should create art. I am my own critical nemesis. Oftentimes my process is angst-ridden and drawn out. Perhaps this is the true nature of creation. Isn’t it? There must always be destruction; for there can’t be the one without the other. Art will always be a source of contention for me. But I couldn’t have it any other way.

Biehl Nature Preserve is located on Lake Twelve.
Biehl Nature Preserve is located on Lake Twelve. Photo by Eddee Daniel

I have been immersed in art since my first memories as a child. Creating was a prevalent theme in my family; playing with my siblings was full of imagination and wonder. Believing that there were no limits was just as crucial as learning that limits must be acknowledged. My mother taught art and thus I was graced with the opportunity to play in all types of mediums from clay to embroidery to paper arts. A dabble here and a dabble there.

Ink Process: Faber-Castell Drawing Ink, Watercolor Paper, Translucent Paper

Now, I mostly work in the digital realm, often from concept to reality. Much of my work is commercial and part of a larger whole: packaging, branding, ephemeral materials, or maps. Whereas my personal work is more tangible and stands on its own in the form of paper sculpture or ink drawings.

Package Design with Octopus: Digital Illustration, Procreate & Photoshop

Research is a large part of my process as I like to understand my subject from every angle possible. From referencing white papers to anatomical drawings to perspectives, I try to visually represent with accuracy. This forms a well-rounded understanding that translates throughout my work. Not just to visually communicate fact from fiction, but to bring forth new ways to think and to spur one’s imagination. For example, how can we address threats like climate change in unconventional ways? Let’s start our conversations with “why,” and end them with unconventional solutions that challenge, “why not?”.

The artist kayaking on Lake Twelve.
The artist kayaking on Lake Twelve. Photo by Eddee Daniel

My latest body of work has been inspired by my time at Biehl Nature Preserve on Lake Twelve. Though now only a jumble of thoughts, sketches, photographs, and ideas, the scope is narrowly focusing on this theme: what you don’t see. The plan for this project is to create dimensional paper pieces accompanied by a journal documenting my time exploring this remote haven.

Gallery

Work in progress from Biehl Nature Preserve: digital photography proofs.
Work in progress from Biehl Nature Preserve: digital photography proofs.
Skull, Curves: Digital Photography, iPhone 12 Pro.
Skull, Curves: Digital Photography, iPhone 12 Pro.
Skull, Spine: Digital Photography, iPhone 12 Pro.
Skull, Spine: Digital Photography, iPhone 12 Pro.
Skull, Abstract: Digital Photography, iPhone 12 Pro.
Skull, Abstract: Digital Photography, iPhone 12 Pro.
Coffee Plant: Digital Illustration, Photoshop
Coffee Plant: Digital Illustration, Photoshop
Apple Study: Digital Illustration, Procreate.
Apple Study: Digital Illustration, Procreate.
223 N Franklin: Digital Illustration, Procreate.
223 N Franklin: Digital Illustration, Procreate.
Work in progress from Biehl Nature Preserve: digital photography proofs.
Work in progress from Biehl Nature Preserve: digital photography proofs.
Direct Mail Targeted Campaign: Digital Illustration, Procreate & Photoshop.
Direct Mail Targeted Campaign: Graphic Design, Photoshop and InDesign.
Frog: Digital Illustration, Procreate.
Frog: Digital Illustration, Procreate.
Pele Kamapuaa (Including hand drawn text): Digital Illustration, Procreate.
Pele Kamapuaa (Including hand drawn text): Digital Illustration, Procreate.
Work in progress from Biehl Nature Preserve: digital photography proofs.
Work in progress from Biehl Nature Preserve: digital photography proofs.
Whitfield Farm Map: Digital Illustration, Procreate.
Whitfield Farm Map: Digital Illustration, Procreate.
Ozaukee Washington Land Trust Information: Data Visualization, Procreate & Illustrator.
Ozaukee Washington Land Trust Information: Data Visualization, Procreate & Illustrator.
Paper Cat: Paper, Cardboard
Paper Cat: Paper, Cardboard
Paper Lion: Paper, Cardboard.
Paper Lion: Paper, Cardboard.
Ozaukee Cat: Digital Illustration, Procreate.
Ozaukee Cat: Digital Illustration, Procreate.
Wagon Ride: Digital Illustration, Procreate.
Wagon Ride: Digital Illustration, Procreate.

Bio

Lisa Leick (last name is pronounced, “Like”). I was raised on a farm—not in a barn—in central Wisconsin. Art was always a part of my life. Professionally, I started in the world of classic photography—before digital was an option. From there I meandered and studied in diverse places, such as Missoula, Montana and Florence, Italy. I earned my Bachelor of Fine Arts in Communication Design at the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design.

As my career in design kicked off, I worked for a start-up chocolate company that spurred my passion for the world of cacao. After a stint as an Art Director for an ad agency specializing in the food industry, I focused on furthering my breadth of skills and freelance work. I earned my Master of Science degree in Information Design and Strategy at Northwestern University.

Lisa Leick at Biehl Nature Preserve.
Lisa Leick at Biehl Nature Preserve. Photo by Eddee Daniel

My work has been exhibited at the Museum of Wisconsin Art and featured at both the Puna Chocolate Company in Hawaii and the Dream Harvest Market in Port Washington, Wisconsin. I have expanded into scientific illustration and mixed media sculptural work. Currently, I am an artist-in-residence at Biehl Nature Preserve on Lake Twelve, represented by Gallery 224 in Port Washington, Wisconsin. An exhibition of my work inspired by this time will be held in 2023 (date tbd) at Gallery 224. My portfolio can be viewed online: https://lisaleick.myportfolio.com/

To learn more about Lake Twelve/Biehl Nature Preserve go to our Find-a-Park page.

This residency is sponsored by Ozaukee Washington Land Trust.

This is the latest in our series of featured artists, which is intended to showcase the work of photographers, artists, writers and other creative individuals in our community whose subjects or themes relate in some broad sense to nature, urban nature, people in nature, etc. To see a list of previously featured artists, click here. The work of the 2019-2020 ARTservancy artists in residence is currently being exhibited monthly at Gallery 224. To meet the other ARTservancy artists in residence, click here.

All images courtesy of the artist, except as noted. The featured image at the top of the page of Lisa Leick kayaking on Lake Twelve is by Eddee Daniel. Ozaukee Washington Land Trust is a project partner of A Wealth of Nature.