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Meet Katie Shapiro in Jefferson Park

Today we’d like to introduce you to Katie Shapiro.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I was born and raised in Los Angeles and got introduced to darkroom photography in middle school. I never really stopped photographing. After graduating high school I attended CalArts and received my undergraduate degree in Photography and Media. I spent the next 6 years working for the artist Allan Sekula and eventually attending the University of California Irvine to receive my MFA in art. Grad school really opened my eyes up to different mediums and expanded my practice to include sculptural aspects with my photography. It was a huge time of growth for me.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
It’s been a bumpy road as I think most artist paths are. I’ve often questioned being an artist since it’s not the easiest life to live, but I always come back to it so I don’t question it as much anymore. I think the biggest struggle is finding a job that gives you flexibility to have studio time, which are often jobs like teaching or artist assistants. I currently teach and that gives me a great schedule to work other things around.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Katie Shapiro story. Tell us more about the business.
I work mainly in photography, but in the past few years have moved from making straight photographs into collaging over my photographs in a way that is unique to me. I use lighting gels to apply different colors and shapes to my images, which are mostly landscape photographs of locations that are known (through my research) to have strong energies. The gels then stand in for the energy, or what I like to think of the things we can’t see, but only sense.

Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
I feel I’ve had great luck. I met my husband early on in undergrad when we were both studying photography at CalArts and we’ve been huge supports to one another over the past years as two photographers in the city. I was also lucky to get an artist assistant position right out of undergrad for an incredible artist which I felt was also very fortuitous. I’m also extremely lucky to have a teaching job at an incredibly arts heavy high school (which I actually attended) and be able to continue to pursue my art practice and career.

Contact Info:


Image Credit:
Jeff McLane

Getting in touch: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

1 Comment

  1. michele shapiro

    September 19, 2018 at 01:58

    Love the article and the art work!!!

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