Grace Lynne Haynes

podcast / president
November 25, 2020
Produced by: Christine Spines

Change Lab Podcast Episode 40

Grace Lynne Haynes on painting to redefine darkness and light

Grace Lynne Haynes’ creative calling didn’t announce itself until she set foot in her first college painting class. But from that moment forward, Grace’s artistic destiny came through loud and clear, as unmistakable as a spiritual epiphany.  

Here’s how she describes it: “It almost reactivated my physical senses. I felt as if colors were brighter, senses were stronger. I just felt like my passion for life began to come back again.  I knew that I had to be doing this for a living.”

Grace Lynne Haynes

As artists and designers we should be promoting empathy. I believe art’s a great way to spread positive messages.

Grace Lynne Haynes


Grace Lynne Haynes

She poured that passion into her painting practice as an Illustration student at ArtCenter, where she cultivated the signature style that quickly translated into a thriving career as a professional painter and illustrator. 

Her works are striking and instantly recognizable, at least partially because you’ve probably seen them on the cover of The New Yorker, which has featured two of her illustrations in the past eight months. She’s also recently graced the pages of Vogue, ELLE and The Washington Post. 

The vibrancy of her bright color schemes and rich skin tones, which she describes as “pitch black,” offer a counter-narrative to the  negative connotations placed on the very idea of darkness. Grace’s brush strokes depict a better world, one where light and dark coexist harmoniously in brightly hued images that celebrate contrast.

Grace Lynne Haynes 

Grace’s career launched like a rocket the moment she graduated from ArtCenter. She was selected to be an inaugural member of Kehinde Wiley’s Black Rock Senegal residency and was included in Forbes “30 Under 30” list under Art and Style.

In many respects, Grace is now living her dream along with that of most every young artist. But perhaps most admirable is her commitment to pursuing a creative practice that reflects her deeply-held values.

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