ALYSSA JUDLO

Written by Erin Weinger, Co-Founder of StyleSectionLA whose work has also appeared in The LA Times, InStyle.com, Elle.com, Time Out Chicago, Angeleno, HollywoodLife.com, PAPER, Antenna, Palm Springs Life and Riviera.

“What makes me happy about art,” says artist Alyssa Judlo, “is that I love the energy of creating.”

Energy is something that the 30 year-old creative powerhouse has never been short on. Whether making art, designing jewelry or interior spaces, Judlo is constantly exploring new, imaginative ways to foster her artistic talents.

After high school Judlo attended the University of Arizona, where she intended to double major in psychology and art. But a car accident with a drunk driver severely injured her arm and derailed her plans, taking her to Indiana University to be close to one of the nation’s leading hand specialists. It also made her realize just how much that hand — and its ability to create the technical, movement-heavy images for which she’s now known— meant to her.

In between classes, Judlo would stretch out on the living room floor of her tiny apartment and spend hours experimenting with mediums such as charcoal, drawing influence from the likes of figurative realists Robert Longo, Caravaggio and Antonio Lopez.

During a summer break Judlo took classes at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago’s prestigious summer program.“I fell in love with it,” she says of the experience. And the school fell in love with Judlo, too, giving her a grant to stay and complete her undergraduate degree — an opportunity which she immediately accepted. While there, Judlo explored various artistic mediums, including painting, sculpture, fashion, architecture and jewelry design. She even explored accessory design, creating a line of hand made purses that were displayed at famed Chicago department store Marshall Fields. But fashion didn’t satisfy her in the same way as traditional drawing. Yet upon graduation from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Judlo was still apprehensive about what medium she wanted to make her own.

So she explored the possibility of a career in interior design, which would have led her down the same road as her grandmother, famed Chicago interior designer Cyrna Field. The day after she graduated from art school she began an internship with interior design firm Nate Berkus Associates.

“What I loved was making the architectural drawings and floor plans,” she says of her time in the interiors world, which also included obtaining an associate’s degree from Chicago’s Harrington College of Design. Soon Judlo began designing jewelry, followed by a sales job in an interiors showroom.

Today Judlo is busy drawing the technical figures that incorporate movement, emotion and an edgy, avant-garde sensibility that mirrors her own personality. She keeps things old-school, avoiding modern day technology in favor of the traditional, skill-based methods she has loved for so long.

“I’m an artist,” she says. “ That’s who I am and I embrace that.”

WASIO Photography