THE ART PLUG EDITORIAL: LALO
Meet The Artist: LALO
by John Oldani
Cleveland-born artist LALO is a young visionary known for his authentic compositions and wild imagination. His standout flair is apparent the first time you lay eyes on his work, hitting psychedelic vibes reminiscent of trippy cartoons like Courage the Cowardly Dog and Aaahh!!! Real Monsters. Lalo doesn’t just illustrate or paint; he creates exotic worlds that beg to be explored.
Lalo found much of his inspiration from these beloved cartoons, often doodling in his notebooks and illustrating whatever came to mind as a kid.
“I’ve been creating art my entire life,” he said. “Growing up I watched a lot of cartoons like Scooby Doo, Spongebob, Dexter’s Laboratory, etc. I always wanted to be able to draw the cartoons I would watch.”
His finalized work perfectly hones in on everything a cartoon is meant to be; whimsical, mysterious, and distinct.
Lalo distances himself from the pack by constantly evolving his craft. Every illustration, painting, or photo edit looks different from the previous, but maintains the same themes. It is difficult for an artist to create a signature style while avoiding repetition, but Lalo bypasses that norm with a kaleidoscopic array of artwork.
“Instead of copying one certain illustrator or cartoonist’s style, I began mashing a bunch of different styles together in order to start creating my own unique characters,” he said.
Lalo is influenced by legendary artists like Kaws, Jean-Michel Basquiat, and Takashi Murakami (just to name a few), and like them he discovered the originality that so many people search their entire careers to find.
So, how does he visualize these outlandish creations?
“I tend to like being alone when I’m creating my art and just honing in on what I’m doing. Watching TV while I work is my version of reference material and it helps me sort through visual ideas that could be useful for the piece I am working on in that particular moment. I also need music playing,” he said.
Music and references also help Lalo sort through various emotions and ideas. Different tones and tempo in a song can change how the actual piece turns out.
“I create in an almost reactionary basis. Music is a stimuli that forces me to get what I’m thinking or feeling in the immediate moment out on the canvas.”
Though Lalo was born in Cleveland, he moved to Chicago to pursue artistic endeavours at Lake Forest College and Columbia College where he graduated as a Studio Art Major.
After networking with other creatives in Chicago, LA, and Miami, he started gaining traction.
“I had the opportunity to work with Marcel Katz for a campaign for Miami Music Week in collaboration with Brightline and Lyft to do some photo edits for his page. After the posts were uploaded I was shocked as they became the most liked posts on The Art Plug Instagram up until that point.”
Lalo received overwhelming support from the edits he made, and it grew his confidence allowing him to take things to the next level. After another opportunity working on a campaign with Virgin Voyages, he was signed by The Art Plug Agency.
When searching for new talent, The Art Plug looks for visionaries with a strong drive, unique personality, and influential work. Lalo is a prime example of a person and artist that perfectly reverberates that melody.
You can see much of Lalo’s impressive work on his instagram @laloartworld or at marcelkatz.net/lalo. Look for him at upcoming events with The Art Plug going forward. He and the team are hard at work putting projects together leading up to Powerhouse in December.
LaloArtWorld’s theme in the words of the artist
“Alpha and Omega for me was an idea derived from growing up in a Catholic home and having to go to Church. The one idea that stuck with me from that time was the Greek alphabet letters (Alpha, Omega) signifying dualities in human experiences and existence.
Examples could be: life and death, success and failure, beginning and end, etc.. I want people to take away my themes of Alpha and Omega as a balanced scale of human experience. This idea of balance and duality should not solely be a religious idea, rather an idea of life as a holistic experience.
That with certain things in life that there is an opposite reality that exists and maintains at the same time. I believe that these ideas hold true in our current social media age. What is presented on social media is only a glimpse of human life and experience and in most cases does not present the viewer with the full picture of what the individual is going through day to day.
Whether it be hard times, issues regarding mental health, etc. consumers of social media tend to only see the upside of human experiences rather than the full picture which could be the opposite of what is presented online. Alpha and Omega is taking the good in life with the bad, and understanding that all of these experiences make up our own individual life stories.”