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Dragonfly Art and Change

Illustration of black and white papercut collage dragonfly flying over lily pads and lotus flowers

On one of my trips to Wisconsin I laid on a hammock and looked up at many dragonflies zipping around at a fast pace to catch insects.  I see them on ponds and watched them gliding over the water and resting on lily pads while canoeing in northern Wisconsin.

The dragonfly is a symbol of changing direction in your life.  This piece was commissioned by someone who’s mother was going through a major life change.  Here is the finished commission piece I completed in 2015.

dragonfly papercut collage with green lily pads and pink lotus flowers over blue water
Dragonfly, Mixed Media, 2015

Clients responded to this piece so much that I went on to edit it and change the colors and composition digitally to create two more pieces:


To purchase prints, please visit my shop.

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Alley Art Festival 2017 Poster Design

Alley Art Festival Poster Design by Laura Lynne Art based on Paramount Theater's Art Deco Building in Aurora Illinois

This was one of the most challenging commissions yet.  Honestly, I got a bit of artist’s block at first, mainly due to thinking of all of the amazing Alley Art Fest posters of the past.  I had a very tough act to follow doing a poster after artists like Chris Hodge (@chodgeart), Joanna Goss (@jowayseeker), Jaime Torraco (@kittensofindustry), and Don Picton (@friendprices)!  The poster by Kittens of Industry last year, I felt, perfectly illustrated the bohemian charm of Aurora’s grassroots art fair.

So, I started looking for inspiration by researching past and present poster design, like the elaborate borders and symmetrical designs of Justin Helton (@statusserigraph).  The Art Nouveau poster designs of Edward Penfield and Alphonse Mucha have long been some of my favorites. Then, as I was looking on Instagram one night, I happened to see Greta Bell’s (@gretabellart) beautiful interpretation of the Paramount Theatre’s ceiling light.  I’ve often marveled at theater design and have taken photos of the decorative lights and murals.  When I saw Greta’s painting, I knew I wanted to use the same subject for inspiration in my poster design (without copying it, of course).  See Greta Bell’s beautiful Paramount Theatre light painting and other artwork here:

It’s been so great to meet and learn from the artists in my community.  I’m so grateful to have met so many talented people!  Thank you so much, Marissa Amoni, for asking me to do the poster for this year’s event!

Here is my 2017 Alley Art Festival Poster Design:

Alley Art Fest Poster Design 2017 based on Paramount Theater Light by Laura Lynne Art

Have Laura Lynne Art design your next gig poster.  Message me here for pricing and package information.




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Murals, Portraits, and Illustrations

oil on canvas portrait painting by chicago aurora artist Laura Lynne

You know that I can do collage, but did you know that I can also paint?  My degree is a BFA with a concentration in painting and drawing.  Here are some examples of new and old paintings:

family tree mural
Family Tree Mural in Progress, 2015

Above is a large scale mural I did for my sister.  It went from floor to ceiling on their high, Victorian era home walls, and wrapped around half the room.

Below is a commission for a cute holiday festival poster I did for a Waldorf school using gouache paint.  Gouache paint is lovely because it can be thinned to a watercolor consistency or used without much water, like acrylics.

painting of Santa gnome bringing snow to village before winter Christmas Holiday
Let it Snow, Gouache on Wood, 2015

This is an oil portrait painting I did using a photograph that I took of my grandma.  She meant a lot to me and shared her love of plants and gardening.

oil on canvas portrait painting by chicago aurora artist Laura Lynne
Grandma, Oil on Canvas, 2001

Below is an owl illustration commission, painted on a puzzle.  This was done for a pastor’s church sermon.  Everyone got a piece of the puzzle to assemble as a group.

hand painted puzzle with owls on a branch and a rainbow behind
Always Room for One More, Gouache on Puzzle, 2017

If you are interested in commissioning a painting, mural or a portrait, please contact me.


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Finding Bighorn Sheep

In 2015 I was asked to create a bighorn sheep collage for a baby boy’s nursery room by my cousin who grew up in Colorado.  We took many trips to Colorado in the summers to visit and I never saw a bighorn sheep.  My family was huge on spending time outside and visiting National and State Parks growing up.  Even on those trips, I never saw a bighorn.

bighorn sheep climbing mountain with wildflowers
Bighorn Sheep Illustration with Wildflowers, Paper Collage, 2016, SOLD

Finally, in May of 2016, I went on a trip to South Dakota with two friends.  We saw so much wildlife at Custer State Park, but no sheep.  Every time we ventured out from the hotel, we saw a sign that read “Bighorn Sheep Crossing,” but no herds were to be seen.

Ram and Magpie, 2016, Paper Collage, 11×14″, $650

On the last day of the trip, we went to the Badlands on our way home.  Our plan was to go hiking through the hills.  We drove around a bit and that’s when we stopped to see an overlook.  There on the steep cliffs were the sheep, soaking up the sun!  It was so exciting to see some in nature after studying them for the collage art.  It was spring so they didn’t have the horns yet, however.  Next time I want to visit in the fall to see the beautiful horns!

Visit my shop to purchase prints of the sheep and see other woodland and mountain animal art.

I also have a digitally altered color set of prints too.

Ram and magpie in the mountains with wildflowers
Ram and Magpie with Wildflowers


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Preschoolers Collaborate on Art for Auction

Blue flower collage collaboration with preschoolers with monarch butterfly

Objects that we create seem to have some of our own inner magic infused.  I wish you could see this flower still life in person because you can feel how magical it is with 15 flowers made by the cutest preschoolers in Aurora, Illinois (and 2 by their teachers).  Here is one of them:  dsc_0494It was so much fun talking to the kids about art and the shapes they saw in the flowers.  They cut out shapes and used some of the shapes I provided too.  Then, used gloss medium with paintbrushes to create their flowers with minimal direction.

When I first took the flowers to my studio after working with the kids in their classroom, I was a little nervous about how I was going to make the collage look like a cohesive design.  All the flowers looked so different, and some were so abstract it was hard to make out a flower shape, which I loved about them, but also felt challenged.  Something else that I love about the flowers is that they are unpredictable, beautifully textured and layered.

blue flower collages made by 4 and 5 year olds
Individual Flowers Made by Preschool Class

I didn’t want to add too much to the kids’ flowers for a few reasons.  1.) I wanted them to recognize their flower art and be proud of it. 2.) I feel like changing someone’s art may make them feel as if their art/they aren’t good enough.  In the end, I did add to a few of them for design and composition purposes to make a more cohesive piece that may draw more money for the auction. They are all so beautiful!

Here is the finished piece:

monarch butterfly and still life blue flower collage with painted vase
Still Life Flower Collage Collaboration, Mixed Media, 2017

If you are interested in a flower collage workshop for kids or adults, please contact me. See more of my work here.



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“You’re My Lobster!” Custom Friends TV Show Inspired Art

Happy Valentine’s Day!  Here is my latest, silliest collage based on Pheobe’s, of the show Friends, lobster love idea.  Pheobe says to Ross regarding Rachel when he gets sad about her possibly dating another guy: “She’s your lobster…. It’s a known fact that lobsters fall in love and mate for life.  You know you can actually see old lobster couples walking around their tank and holding claws!”  Aw, Friends.

lobster playing trombone and lobster playing guitar in boat
You’re My Lobster, Paper Collage, 2017

This collage was made for two musicians in Milwaukee, Michael Clobes of Cold Sweat and The Brew City Horns, and Chrissy Dzioba of The Whiskeybelles (I’m a huge fan!).  My good friend, Chrissy, commissioned the illustration art as a Valentine’s Day gift and wanted to represent the cities where they are from in the collage.  Santiago, Chile is on the left and Milwaukee is on the right.  Michael plays an Edwards trombone and the guitar in the art is Chrissy’s custom Gibson SJ-200 Bob Dylan Player’s Edition.  They are just two cute lobster musicians floating around in their row boat, and so in love.

guitar collage with cowgirl boots handpainted details
Collage Detail, Guitar and Cowgirl Boots, 2017

Check out The Whiskeybelles here:

Cold Sweat and The Brew City Horns:

If you’d like a custom collage with your lobster for an anniversary gift (paper year, perhaps?), engagement present, or any other occasion, please contact me.  And, don’t worry if you haven’t found your lobster yet.  I never thought I’d find mine, but it happened.  Love to you all!

Here is a link to purchase this lobster print.




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Fire Trucks for the Aurora Regional Fire Museum

Vintage firetruck with dalmation squirrel cardinal and sun

At the Alley Art Festival in Aurora, Illinois in August of 2016, I met the new Executive Director of the Aurora Regional Fire Museum, Brian Failing.  He asked me to do a project for the museum – a series of prints to sell in the museum shop.

I started doing research at the Aurora Historical Society, digging up old photos of Aurora.  It was really amazing to see what Aurora looked like in the 1800’s and early 1900’s.  Seeing the photos of the beautiful buildings and crowded streets made me appreciate the city where I live more.  I’m so thankful for that.

Vintage firetruck with dalmation squirrel cardinal and sun
Vintage Fire Truck with Dalmation, Digitally Altered Paper Collage Print, 2017

Next, I went to the museum to do more research on the fire history and vintage fire trucks.  Their library was so nicely organized.  I collected a lot of material, including photographs of their fully restored fire trucks.  Then I went to work creating three original collages, which will be for sale in the Aurora Regional Fire Museum until the end of 2017. (Prints are for sale in the museum store.)

This museum is a unique gem in Aurora.  The architecture is beautiful.  If you have kids they have a very nice play area within the museum, including books, a fire house, fire gear to wear, and lots of toy firetrucks.

Aurora Regional Fire Museum Illustration
Aurora Regional Fire Museum Illustration, Paper Collage, 2017
Vintage Fire Truck, Paper Collage Art, 2017

I am so grateful to have been able to help a non-profit in my community.  If you would like me to do a project for your non-profit, please contact me at  View more of my work here.

Thank you to all of the firefighters in Aurora and everywhere!!


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Commissioned Art Process

dragonfly paper cut collage process

If you’ve asked me to commission a piece of art, you can bet I am super excited!  (If you are interested in commissioning art for your nursery or any other room, please contact me at to see if I can meet your deadline this year.)  Here is some information about the process of a commissioned collage.

black and white dragonfly illustration with lily pads and lotus
Black and White Dragonfly Over Pond

Step One: Research (1 week)

-We’ll converse about your likes and dislikes, ideas for the piece.

-Please send any photos of the room, favorite items in it, favorite places, artists, animals, quotes, hobbies, favorite books, etc… The more I know about your life inspirations, the more I can draw from when it comes to creating the art.

-Please answer the following questions:

-Have you commissioned art before? If so, please let me know how many pieces and what you liked or didn’t like about the process.

-What size do you want the piece? Please allow for a mat and frame.

-What do you want to see in your art?

-What is the main emotion or attitude you would like to feel from the art?

-Is there anything you don’t like about my art or don’t want to see in your piece?

-Will you be the only one approving the art? If not, please let me know the email address or phone number of the others involved.

-Do you have any other questions or requests?

-If you have a preference on any of the following, please let me know:



-Actions of the animals


-Favorite quotes

-Specific papers. These would need to be mailed prior to step 3.


Contract and Payment:

-Once I know the scope of the project, we can arrange a contract (written for public commissions or email conversation for friends and family)

-We’ll agree on a timeline, deadline and budget.

-A portion (usually one third) of the total cost of the piece is due at the start for supplies, research and sketching. The vast majority of the creative work happens in the first few weeks of planning even though the paper collage hasn’t even started yet. This is non-refundable.

Dragonfly Process - Rough Sketch
For example, the design chosen for the dragonfly collage was the one on the bottom right.

Step Two: Rough Sketches and Palette (3 days – 2 weeks)

-I’ll create 6-8 very rough sketches to figure out the placement of the design and objects (composition). This is very basic and doesn’t show color or detail.

-We’ll talk about any changes, if necessary.

-Please feel free to send me back to the drawing board if it’s not quite right yet, but remember this is just a very, very rough drawing.

-The paper color palette will be chosen

Dragonfly Process - Colors
The palette for this project was jewel tones and metallic gold.

Step Three: Final Sketch (2 days – 3 weeks)

-We’ll pick the final sketch design

-For an extra fee, I can create a small rough paper collage to show color relationships

-After we agree on the basic colors and design, any changes to colors and design may require an additional fee. The reason is because it may take many extra hours to redo work in the following steps. Please don’t let this deter you from telling me your opinions, however, as I may be able to make easy changes.

Step Four: Collage (1 – 5 weeks)

-After I start on the collage, I will send you updates via text, or email frequently.

-Please give me input along the way.

My client, Alison, gave me a lot of autonomy for this piece.  I originally was going to make the background green, but then decided that the dark blue made the lily pads pop better.  Alison agreed.
Step Four Example: My client, Alison, gave me a lot of autonomy for this piece. I originally was going to make the background green, but then decided that the dark blue made the lily pads pop better. Alison agreed! A major change like this at the start of the process is better than at the end.

-This is the time where I work out color and design challenges on the paper.

Dragonfly Process - Research and Collage
You can see (very faintly on the sketchbook) that I did a more detailed study of the dragonfly when it was time to start paper cutting.
Wing details are added.
Wing details are added.
A lot of extra detail was added here - darker paper under the lily pads, for example.  At this point I was undecided about whether I should do the solid gold, the lilac, the sparkly gold, or a combination, under the wings.
A lot of extra detail was added here – darker paper under the lily pads, for example. At this point I was undecided about whether I should do the solid gold, the lilac, the sparkly gold, or a combination, under the wings.
Many more hours of work and it is almost done.  I decided to do a combination of lilac and sparkly gold under the wings, blue paper in parts of the body.  Details have been added to all the lily pads.  Note when using tissue paper (the blue/green in the water) it looks much different before it's glued.
Many more hours of work and it is almost done. I decided to do a combination of lilac and sparkly gold under the wings, blue paper in parts of the body. Details have been added to all the lily pads. Note: when using tissue paper (the blue/green in the water) it looks much different before it’s glued.

Step Five: Final Collage

-Before gluing, I’ll send a picture of the final collage.

-This is the last call for any changes.

Step Six: Gluing and Sealing (3 days – 2 weeks)

-Your collage will be glued down and sealed for its protection

I dropped water on the tissue paper to create an effect.
I dropped water on the tissue paper to create an effect. The background is glued and finished here.

-Please note the final collage will have some bumps and/or bubbles in the paper due to overlapping thicker paper with thin, or gluing a large piece. I will do my best to avoid any bumps and bubbles.

Step Seven: Caring for Your Collage

-Please store the collage flat until framed and matted.

-Please display your collage away from direct light and humidity

-Matting the collage keeps the paper off the glass and helps with moisture control

-It is best to purchase UV glass for your frame

*Copyright of the finished piece belongs to Laura Lynne of Laura Lynne Art.

Thank you so much for working with me.

Enjoy your art!



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Astronomy Paper Cut Art

Turtle looking through a vintage telescope with stars
Astronomer Turtle, Hand Cut Paper Collage Illustration, 2014

The idea for the astronomy series was inspired by my astronomer cousin, Dr. Rachel Osten.  These pieces were done as a gift for her youngest son’s room.

Be humble for you are made of Earth Be noble for you are made of stars.
“Be Noble for You are Made of Stars, Be Humble for You are Made of Earth,” Serbian Proverb, Paper Collage Illustration, 2014

This is how the quote should read:  “Be humble for you are made of earth. Be noble for you are made of stars.” It’s a Serbian proverb.  My astronomy quote paper cut art displays the words backwards because I wanted the words and pictures to correspond.  The Earth part is written in the earth and the stars part of the quote is written in the sky.

Here, I imagined a deer and turtle visiting an observatory late at night when all of the other astronomers have gone to sleep.  They will gaze at the stars until the morning hours.

A butterfly flies by the mountain observatory while the starry sky lights dance above.

These blue, astronomy animal art prints are for sale in my shop.