Born and raised on the Bayou, Laura Cooper began life surrounded by water. Her childhood home was on the banks of the Vermilion Bayou in Lafayette, Louisiana. She has fond memories of waking in the middle of the night to the distant rumble of tugboats pushing barges from the Gulf of Mexico. While lying in bed, she could see the bright lights of the vessels pass by her bedroom window. This early exposure to the maritime world led her to capture the beauty of sailing on canvas. Her work combines a unique relationship between atmosphere and light while maintaining a painterly feel.
After graduating from high school, Laura moved to Boston in 1984 to earn her degree in English. While at Northeastern University, she would spend hours at different museums and sketch what she observed. She would often walk to Boston Harbor and draw the scenes in front of her. She graduated from Northeastern University and worked in publishing where she co-wrote a weekly column for a computer trade newspaper. When the recession hit in the late 1980’s, Laura decided to become recession proof and was accepted to Simmons College and earned her Nursing degree. After graduating from Simmons, she worked at Boston Children’s Hospital in Cardiology and Boston City Hospital in Labor and Delivery. The whole time she was trying to establish herself in her publishing and nursing careers, she was taking art classes. Working from life, plein air painting became a way to release stress. As time went on, it became apparent that all she wanted to do was paint. She began to take her art more seriously and sought out well-known Bostonian artists including Robert Cormier. Currently, she paints with marine artist, Richard Loud, Post Managing Fellow of the American Society of Marine Artists and who is the Managing Director of Maritime Art, Ltd.
Her accomplishments include: 2006 Rockport Art Association Contributing Members Show Mary James and Slater-Brown Memorial Award; 2008 Duxbury Art Association Winter Juried Show-Second Place; South Shore Art Center Arts Festival-Best in Show; Quincy Art Association Arts Fest-Honorable Mention; Plymouth Guild Forty First Annual Juried Art Show-Honorable Mention; 2012 South Shore Art Center Arts Festival,Third Prize Oil, 2015 Rudolph J. Schaefer III Emerging Artist Award and 2016 Maritime Gallery Yachting Award in the International Marine Art Exhibition at the Maritime Gallery at Mystic Seaport, Mystic CT. She is a Signature Member of the American Society of Marine Artists (ASMA).