Audrey De La Cruz, is the artist behind Annotated Audrey. Her vibrant work creates an inspiring view of the desert and sparks joy in the viewer.
Here she is in her own words:
My name is Audrey De La Cruz, and I am the artist and illustrator behind Annotated Audrey Art. I work with my partner, Larry, to create products using my colorful art, such as stickers, art prints, notecards, and more.
How did you get started creating your pieces?
Born and raised in Los Angeles, I moved to Tucson, Arizona in 2016. In my first year living in Tucson, I fell in love with the lush desert landscapes, animals, and unique plant life. My new surroundings inspired me to create a plethora of art, and eventually, I turned my practice of making art into a business.
What’s your favorite part of your work/what you make?
I like to make art that creates joy and brings happiness to the people who encounter it. I’m always happy to hear that someone enjoys my work or that it has impacted their life in some way.
How do you express your creativity through your work?
The reason I create is to express myself. I create as often as I can and I experiment with as many different mediums as I can.
I also love trying new art supplies and taking inspiration from the materials I use to create my art. Even if the subject remains the same, I always try to express myself through the process itself.
What brings you joy?
Creating is the thing that brings me the most joy in life, which is why I’m so happy to be able to create for a living. I love to get creative whether it's drawing a new illustration, playing with new art supplies, creating a fun video for social media, or even exploring new ideas through writing.
One of my favorite things to do is creative journaling because it combines so many of the things I love to do.
What challenge(s) have you overcome?When I moved from the city to a rural area of the desert in 2016, it was a huge shift for me in so many ways. As with anyone who moves to a new place, I didn’t really know anyone. I also didn’t have any formal training as an artist, so it really felt like I was starting from the ground up.
I devoted myself to improving my art by practicing for hours a day and then eventually started selling my work at farmer’s markets, doing upwards of 5 markets per week. It was a lot of work, but through that effort, I was able to refine my artistic style and build a growing community of people who enjoy my art.
After the pandemic hit in 2020, we transitioned to a primarily online business with a large focus on retail partnerships with local businesses. As an introvert who loves working from home, I am definitely happy with how our business has evolved through these challenges.
Is anything exciting in the works/coming up for you?
I really love journaling and stationery. I’m currently working on ways to expand our business to incorporate more stationery-related products.
What do you wish for the world?While there are many things I would wish for if I could, I would probably focus on creating more empathy in the world. I think empathy is the first step to building lasting positive change because it gets people to think about how their actions might impact others and start taking steps to improve the world around them.
You can catch up with Annotated Audrey online in the following places: