Growing up, Lawrence Gregorek never let cliques define who he was or prevent him from participating in the activities he enjoyed. As a 2006 Cornwall graduate, Gregorek was in the unique position of being able to express himself as both an athlete and an artist.
Gregorek was quarterback of the football team, but he also played baseball and was a member of the swimming and diving team. He’d practice like any other athlete, but then he’d hit the art room to work on a project. He often fielded questions from both cliques – are you really an athlete/artist? – but everyone accepted him for who he was. Ever since he was a kid, he had an interest in both arts and athletics.
“I’ve always been an adventurous person and I love sports,” Gregorek said. “I think everyone knew that growing up. I was always outside, running around.”
Gregorek also learned he had the ability to see certain things.
“If there’s a blank canvas, I’m able to see the image before I paint. I enjoy being expressive. Art was just another way for me to express my love with color, composition, and design. Drawing and painting gave me an outlet and I was pretty good at it. I wanted to continue with it and see where art could take me.”
Gregorek took the usual art classes in high school and then went on to major in fine arts in college. Following graduation he transitioned into the film industry, helping to build sets on movies like “La La Land.”
As Gregorek continues to work on his craft as an artist, he remains active in sports.
“In my life I’ve always tried to stay in that creative atmosphere whether it was in art, sculpture, set decoration. I’m still climbing mountains, going to beaches, and going through caves. I’m still very adventurous and play sports all the time, but I’ll always have art because it’s a part of me. I’ve always found ways to create.”
Gregorek participated in ArtFest, earlier this month, and walked away with the “Best in Show” award for an abstract painting of a lion.
“I always try to find outlets to create and show my work. I want people to connect with my emotions, with my work. If they feel certain things, good or bad, that’s what I want. I want them to have a reaction to what I do in a positive way. The fact I’m able to motivate someone’s emotions I think is the whole point of being an artist. Even as an athlete, you want to score the touchdown, you want to hit the home run. The feeling I got when I would crush a home run is the same feeling I had when I won the art festival.”
Gregorek’s painting started out very abstract. He described being in a good mood as he was throwing paint, of various colors, on canvas, creating a drip effect. As he was looking at his creation he noticed what looked like a lion’s face, so he decided to add it.
News of the ArtFest honor came as a shock to Gregorek. He was congratulating some of the day’s other winners when he heard his name.
“The fact I was able to have the judge go on my level and experience the same thing I felt is exactly what I want to do as an artist. I influenced him enough to want to give me the award. He felt my art really touched him in a certain way. I was appreciative of the award and was very happy.”
Gregorek prefers to paint with oils and acrylics, but not always on canvas. Sometimes he’ll use whatever he can find be it a door or a piece of shelving. He also dabbles in creating sculptures. He’s participated in random art shows and has even had some gallery showings. Besides creating from the visions in his mind, Gregorek will also do custom pieces. Samples of his work can be found by visiting lawrence-gregorek.squarespace.com.