Laraine Wade's journey into the world of art began during her junior year as an undergraduate, where she initially pursued a major in home economics and a minor in art. After immersing herself in drawing and design classes for a year, Laraine made the decision to switch her major to art. Following her relocation to California, she discovered a profound passion for ceramics, which became her primary focus for several years. It was during this time that Laraine found inspiration in the works of notable artists belonging to the school of Funk Art, including David Gilhooly, Robert Arneson, and Clayton Bailey. Their ability to infuse humor into well-known objects resonated deeply with her artistic sensibilities. Drawing on this influence, Laraine frequently created whimsical sculptures of food, animals, and clothing. She delved into research on historical shoes and gloves, exploring ornate fabrics, ribbons, and stitching, which eventually led her to participate in several art shows for the first time. Throughout this period of artistic exploration, Laraine obtained a Bachelor's Degree in Art, earned a Teacher's Certification for Art and Home Economics in grades K-12, and attained a Master's Degree in Art with an Emphasis in Ceramics.
In 1998, Laraine relocated to Olympia and embarked on a new artistic venture, delving into the realm of collage using watercolors, gold threads, and metallic powders. She also found herself drawn to creating designer quilts and incorporating the fabric scraps from these quilts into her collages. Over the following years, Laraine's artistic repertoire expanded to include ink paintings and increasingly abstract collages. During this period, she also dedicated 13 years to teaching high-school art, where she guided students in the exploration of drawing, painting, and ceramics. Laraine's own focus at the time shifted towards oil paintings, finding inspiration in influential painters such as Wassily Kandinsky and Wayne Thiebaud. It was during this period that Laraine's love for the abstract solidified, embracing the captivating interplay of color, movement, and the elegance of line and shadow.
After retiring from teaching in 2011, Laraine became a member of The Artists' Gallery. Since then, she has continued her artistic journey, engaging in ink paintings, oil paintings, collages, and the creation of designer pillows and quilts. Laraine particularly enjoys the process of creating abstract quilts, relishing the challenge of working with lines, triangles, and curves. For her, it is akin to painting with fabric, a form of artistic expression that brings her immense joy and satisfaction.