19 East Toole Avenue
Tucson, AZ 85705
Lauri Marks Kaye has worked professionally as an artist since graduating from Parsons School of Design, NYC, in 1992. She first landed a job as assistant art director at Rolling Stone Magazine and eventually moved on to become art director at NSI Design, NY, producing art and design projects for local and corporate clients, including AT&T, Fodor’s and Scientific American. Eventually, Kaye began freelancing, building up a client list that would enable her to launch her own design firm, Sun Design, Inc. The artists at Kaye’s new design studio worked on a wide range of creative design projects, the favorite being a host of collateral material, art and design for two large theme restaurants in Manhattan: Jekyll & Hyde and Night Gallery.
During these years of fulfilling, passionate endeavors, Kaye was inspired to work on a business plan for a restaurant where she could incorporate her creative skills with her joy of cooking, and inventing delicious, healthy meals. In the spring of 1998, Kaye packed up and headed southwest after discovering that Tucson, AZ had the most restaurants per capita. Her professional intention was to open a restaurant that served creative American fare, where artists could exhibit and sell their work. She established Create Cafe & Catering, Inc. in Tucson in 1999, fulfilling these dreams and so much more for 13 years. This is where she not only sold her first sandwiches and salads, but also pieces from her portfolio of photography,
Now on Exhibit at the
Tucson International Airport
prints and hand painted furniture. Having a platform to sell artwork quickly exceeded her expectations.
Kaye had steadily been building her fine arts portfolio in through pen and ink drawings as well as photography. With a hectic lifestyle working, raising a family and maintaining a hand in the arts, Kaye decided to simplify her artistic approach by choosing a medium that was easily portable and could be applied at a moment’s notice or surge of inspiration. And so it was that .03 mm archival pen and a hardcover sketchbook became the heart and soul for her creative expression. A volume of journalistic portraiture line drawings began to fill the pages. They included people of various cultures and lifestyles, news stories, local entrepreneurs, celebrities and social issues. They all evolved from textual information, observations and images, each becoming a unique portrait story.
In 2015, Kaye launched Create For The People Ventures creating original and commissioned pieces where the profits would be donated to charity, literally "creating for the people". Kaye provides hand-drawn customized portraits with subjects ranging from people, social issues, politics, pets and businesses to current events. Clients complete a questionnaire in order to provide interesting and relevant information about the subject. Kaye weaves the information together to create a truly unique piece of art that tells a story. These black and white continuous line drawings feature immense, intricate detail. Words, quotes, facts and images are integrated to make for a striking and entertaining piece. After the drawings are complete Kaye integrates color using photography and digital art. Kaye loves working with her clients and collaborating on their masterpiece and its final application. Finished pieces have been printed on a wide range of materials, from metal, wood and acrylic to apparel and skateboards.
Kaye is currently working on a portrait series, "A Tucson Portrait Story" showcasing people, places, businesses, "that's sooo Tucson" moments, and others that will be ready for exhibition and publication.