Lauri Novak

I feel like photography has always been part of my life. It defines a large part of who I am. I was the one always taking photos in school and tried my hand at the usual yearbook and school newspaper photographer roles. They weren’t for me. I learned things along the way and consider it all part of my journey of seeing. 

My photography reflects my perspective and personality. I have always had a bit of a different way of looking at the world. I feel fortunate to not have gone along with the crowd, follow trends and even though it wasn’t always seen as ‘right’, my viewpoints and way of being have pushed through in my work. 

I am blessed with a wandering spirit that was developed throughout my life and something I honor to this day. I grew up traveling the United States with my family. We went to a different destination every year. Being able to see beyond our own town and the local area is how I first started telling photographic stories. Different landscapes, cities, life on farms, driving across America and camping along the way, really opened my eyes to so much of what else was out there to see. I continue to travel, explore the world and capture what I see along the way.

Architecture was always a part of what I saw, was drawn to and continues to be the main subject for my work. Considering I live near Chicago it makes it relatively easy. Shape, form, lines, shadows and reflections continue to draw my eye. Finding unique ways of photographing buildings and creating art with them is how I challenge myself in my work. I see nature in the same way. Mother Nature is the original architect and an incredible one at that. My images of landscapes, leaves, streams, and mountains also reflect my love of architecture.   

How can I see this and photograph it differently? What is a way no one has photographed this before? Both questions I ask myself as I approach not only architecture but almost any subject I photograph.

I love to create images that make others look at them, wonder what they are or how I saw what I saw. I’m continually learning new techniques, relying on my sense of play and childlike wonder in order to create and grow in my art. I feel a sense of accomplishment and know I’ve reached my goal when a viewer stops, thinks and experiences wonder and curiosity when seeing my work.