Lisa Golightly - August Featured Artist

Lisa Golightly
Big Cartel

Portland, OR

Last time you ate a pancake?
last weekend (with blueberries and whipped cream, yum) hmmm now I want pancakes.

Favorite day of the week?
Friday, I go horseback riding.

Favorite website besides your own?
I'm hooked on Pinterest right now, I use it to jump start my inspiration in the morning.


Give us a brief description of you and your work.

I grew up with an artist father, who was always making, painting, carving. I always loved the medium of painting but it terrified me. It wasn't until after college that I decided that meant I had to do it. I received a BFA in studio art with an emphasis in photography, which still plays a huge part in my work. My paintings play with the idea of collective memory and how interchangable those memories can be.

What drew you to portraits?... sorry about the pun.

I started doing portraits of my own kids and it grew from there.

You do an amazing job of using 'white space' in your artwork. Can you describe what the space does for your art and how you fight the urge to 'fill' the space?

A lot of my work is based on photos, found photos or old family photos and I like to remove information from the background as it usually is not necessary for telling the story. At the same time it adds a little mystery to what is actually going on and allows the viewer to fill in the story a bit.

In many cases your portraits omit key facial features (IE: face, eyes, nose, etc) How did this become a reoccurring characteristic for your art?

I suppose it started as a reaction to my portrait work. I started working on personal paintings based on old family photos and noticed I was treating them as too precious, so obscuring faces was one way to get around that and it has just continued to evolve.

Does choosing to exclude these facial features make it more difficult to generate the emotion and energy or a subject?

It allows the viewer to relate more to the images, I think. They are able to put themselves in a piece or see someone they know, relate to the image more.

What's your goal as an artist?

I really want to continue to work. I can't imagine not painting, so I want to keep pushing myself to create work I'm proud of and challenges me.

Why do you chose to show your artwork on Plywerk?

I love the clean finish it gives a piece.

Where do you draw inspiration from?

I am inspired by my family memories and watching that process of creating those same memories with my kids.

Favorite living artist?

My dad

Favorite deceased artist?

gah, that's just too hard to pick...

Favorite type of melon?


Favorite Golden Girl?


Breakfast cereal of choice?

Cheerios with bananas

More about Lisa

Lisa has an incredible knack for creating beautiful artwork that is overflowing with emotion and history. Her art is an extension of her life, as life has grown to include children, so has her art. Inspired by her father's art, Lisa dreamed of being an artist since early childhood. Lisa studied photography in school and has a BFA in studio art. Her work explores the memory of childhood and how watching her own children influence the snapshots of these memories. The name of her website, Kiki and Polly, in fact is inspired by her daughter’s love of a bird she named Kiki, and for her imaginary friend Polly. I was well known in elementary school for nicknaming my string cheese and yogurt Polly. Probably that same Polly... just channeled though dairy products.

Win a Lisa Golightly print on Plywerk

Post a comment below and you will automatically be entered in a drawing to win a Lisa Golightly print mounted on 3/4" bamboo Plywerk!!! We'll select a winner at random at the end of the month so make sure you come back to the blog in early September to see if you won and to check out the new featured artist! We'll ship it anywhere in the continental US for free. If you win and need it shipped internationally, you're on the hook for shipping costs. Sorry to be so mean.

18 thoughts on “Lisa Golightly - August Featured Artist”

  • Susan

    This is the first time I was introduced to Lisa Golightly's work and guess what?

    I L.O.V.E. IT!!

    Now having anineedoneofherpieces!!

    i have nephews and nieces

  • Julia flynn

    I love how her art brings up memories of old (and new) pictures of my family. They remind me of pictures of my grandparents when they were young. We recently had a family reunion and viewed many old pictures of family, now I am inspired to try to create some of my own art from these pictures.. because of Lisa's art! Hope that is ok..Thanks Lisa.. J

  • Susan

    I forgot a word in that comment. . .if it doesn't make sense...there is a reason!

    obviously not in a commentwritingwell season

  • Amy Strickland

    I am in love love love with these pictures!!!!

    • Garrett

      Amy is the winner of the Lisa Golightly print mounted on Plywerk! Please email us at to claim your prize. Include your shipping address and a picture of you overflowing with joy when you found out you won!... just kidding about needing to include a pic, but we hope you're overjoyed about winning.

  • kristen

    lovely work! soooo inspiring!

  • Janie Hewson

    Wonderful, thoughtful and beautiful work. Delight to hear your story.

  • Meran

    She does "do" white space very well! I'm going to try to work on my own pieces, putting in white space, seeing how it works. Thanks for the inspiration!

  • Rebecca K

    I Think I LOVE her...seriously, her work is beautiful and we studied the same things in school. It's like we are art school twins!

  • Catherine

    As a big Plywerk fan, I was shocked and surprised to open the newsletter and find Lisa Golightly's amazing work highlighted. I had already eyed her talent and have been an avid follower of her "kikiandpolly" site. Two of my favorites in one place!! Thanks Plywerk crew and Lisa for your incredible work!! Just beautiful.

  • Mary Ann Machi

    Lovely and soft. The lack of detail makes your art all the more enchanting, allowing me to "fill in the blanks". Especially love the 2 little persons with the suspenders and red bow ties.

  • laura

    Big fan of Lisa's work- happy to see if featured here. Though I can't figure out how to order it mounted via Plywerk. Help please?


    • Garrett


      Thanks for the note and I'm so glad you are a big fan of Lisa's. Unfortunately, we don't have a super slick method for ordering Lisa's work on Plywerk. However, you can order any of her prints via her Etsy store: and we'll mount them for you. Or, I'm positive you could contact Lisa directly and figure out a price for a fully mounted piece.

  • Stephanie

    Kismet! I just found Lisa's work a couple of months ago and immediately bookmarked her site, I hope to collaborate someday soon! I love adding a handmade feeling to photographs, especially with images of kids. Beautiful work.

  • JD Santen

    What great pictures. Love the atmosphere that these conjure.

  • wanni

    love your work!

  • Byron Gates Jr

    Lisa...your work is so sincere, simple, it strikes a cord in the memories that we all share. Your 'less is more' style is beautifully executed, I am in love with your art...b

  • Cathie Carroll

    I hope I'm not too late to be a part of the drawing- I am simply in love with these works.
    So simple and so evocative.
    Gorgeous work.

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