1984 - 1987
Art Center College of Design, Pasadena, CA
BFA, with Honors
1980 - 1983
San Joaquin Delta College, Stockton, CA
AA , Honor roll
2004 - 2017
2004 - present
2007 - 2008
Palomar College, San Marcos, CA. Drawing and Composition
Athenaeum, La Jolla, CA. Pen and Ink, Watercolor and Mixed Media
UCSD Extension, La Jolla, CA. Pen and Ink, and Animal Illustration. Illustration Certificate Program.
One week teaching urban sketching on location in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.
One week teaching urban sketching on location in Nice, France.
LINK, a free once-a-month program for at-risk teens sponsored by the AIGA.
Canyon Crest Academy, San Diego, CA. High school conservatory program.
Children’s Book Illustration, Pen and Ink and Mosaic
National Watercolor Society and The Royal Scottish Society of Painters in Watercolour, “2024 International Exchange Exhibition," juried by Carolyn Latanision (“Place des Vosges")
San Diego Watercolor Society, Member Exhibition, “The Element of Surprise," juried by
Liz Walker (“Goth Girls”)
Urban Sketchers, Gallery 21, Spanish Village, Balboa Park, San Diego , CA (San Francisco buildings, San Francisco Buildings 2, Say Cheese, Man reading news with dog.)
San Diego Watercolor Society, Member Exhibition, "Grey Matters," juried by Drew Brandish ("Training Day")
San Diego Watercolor Society, Member Exhibition, "Visual Dialogues," juried by Ken Goldman ("Main Street Fantasy," Honorable Mention)
San Diego Watercolor Society, Member Exhibition, "Break for Soup," juried by Edward Abrams ("The Hug," Honorable Mention)
San Diego Watercolor Society, Member Exhibition, "Simple Pleasures," juried by Thomas Franco ("Mama I can't Breathe")
San Diego Watercolor Society, Member Exhibition, "I Got Rhythm," juried by Ralph Kingery ("Phoebe")
San Diego Watercolor Society, Member Exhibition, "Go Paint," juried by Pierre Guidetti ("Coffee with Dan")
San Diego Watercolor Society, Member Exhibition, “Beyond Rules” ("Good Kids" AKA "Summer")
San Diego Watercolor Society, Member Exhibition, “My Life, My Story," juried by Graeme Stevenson ("Saturday", and "Sunday")
Athenaeum, Annual Juried Show, La Jolla, CA, 2 pieces ("US1" and "US3", now called "Family")
Art on 30th, Juried Show "Double Trouble", San Diego, CA, 2 pieces ("US1" and "US3")
Oceanside Museum of Art, Sparks Gallery, Juried Show, San Diego, CA ("10 Women")
Athenaeum, Annual Juried Show, La Jolla, CA ("10 Women")
Cannon Gallery, Annual Juried Show, Carlsbad, CA ("10 Women")
Athenaeum, Annual Juried Show, La Jolla, CA ("Little People")
Girard Gourmet, La Jolla, CA, “From the Archives”
Girard Gourmet, La Jolla, CA, "20 Years of Different Just Like Me"
Athenaeum, Bread & Salt, Barrio Logan, CA, "10 Women," for Women’s History Month.
Athenaeum, La Jolla, CA, “The Super Secret Show”
Girard Gourmet, La Jolla, CA, “Coffee Shops”
Girard Gourmet, La Jolla, CA, “People & Places”
Girard Gourmet, La Jolla, CA, “The Art of Lori Mitchell”
Girard Gourmet, La Jolla, CA, “Illustrations by Lori Mitchell"
“Athenaeum Faculty Show," San Diego, CA
“Synchronicity,” Sips Gallery, with *TWA, San Marcos, CA
"Black and White," Fallbrook Library, Fallbrook, CA
“Turning Tides,” with TWA, BFree Gallery, La Jolla, CA
“Metamorphosis of a Coffee Shop,” Flower Pot Cafe, La Jolla, CA
"NOW" with TWA, Oceanside Museum of Art, Oceanside, CA
"20/20" with TWA, Fresh Paint, La Jolla, CA.
San Diego Art Institute, "A Tribute to Pam Whidden: Models are to Artists Like Flowers are to Bees," San Diego CA.
Cannon Gallery, “Prom Show” with TWA, Carlsbad, CA
Inspiration Gallery, “San Diego and Beyond,” Exhibit with the Art Posse, Liberty Station, San Diego, CA.
Fallbrook Library, Exhibit with TWA, 10 Women, Fallbrook, CA.
Helmuth Projects, “Nasty Women” Juried exhibit, San Diego, CA,
Girard Gourmet, "Three Generations," La Jolla, CA,
California Center for the Arts Museum, "Writing with Pictures,” Escondido, CA.
Art Walk, Liberty Station, San Diego, CA
Cannon ArtGallery, “Original Art: Celebrating the Fine Art of Children’s Books,” Carlsbad, CA
2004 - 2015
Boehm Gallery, Annual Faculty Exhibit, Palomar College, Escondido, CA.
*TWA, Time For Women Artists
Baldessari, Athenaeum Music and Art Library, La Jolla CA. Acquired 2019
Warwick’s 125 year Anniversary. La Jolla, CA.
Three panel timeline of the family-owned bookstore from 1896 to 2021.
Otay Mesa Fire Station 38, San Diego, CA. "Tranquil/Tranquila"
The mural is a polyptych consisting of 8 panels, each 8 feet high and 2 feet wide. They are black and white watercolor transferred to panels, depicting the landscape of Otay Mesa.
Warwick’s 125 year Anniversary Mural. La Jolla, CA.
The mural covers the second floor of the Warwick's bookstore with portraits of 20 authors that have visited the store to sign books.
2014 - present
Time for Women Artists (TWA), San Diego, CA
2013 - present
Art Posse: AKA Sisterhood of the Traveling Paints, San Diego, CA
2005 - present
San Diego Urban Sketchers, San Diego, CA 2005 – present
2004 - present
The Athenaeum Music and Art Library, San Diego, CA
Art and diverse cultures have always interested me. As a kid, my mom often took my two sisters and me to different cultural events and art happenings. She once took us to a street fair in the Los Angeles community of Watts. Neighborhood kids and I colored side-by-side on the street with chalk, fast becoming friends in the way small children do. We ate food together that afternoon, with flavors and varieties I had never experienced before.
A few days later, the Watts riots erupted. As I watched with a child’s eyes the scenes of protests and destruction on television, I worried about my new friends. Were they safe? Were their homes on fire? Would they be able to go to school? I felt a bond with my friends, an unbreakable link created through art and innocence no matter how fleeting the moment. Little did I know how this sense of kinship, of empathy for others and their struggles, would become foundational to my creativity.
As I became older, art became my passion and I came to firmly believe art can change the world. I completed my education at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, where I would graduate with honors. I went on to work as an illustrator and college art instructor.
In 1991 my daughter April was born. She was eight months old when I first noticed the small pale patch on her skin. Over the years, she and I came to learn quite a bit about vitiligo, a medical condition that causes white skin patches that often grow bigger over time.
It inspired me to write and illustrate Different Just Like Me, a children’s book that showed how we are all different, yet so much alike. This led over the next 20 years to making presentations about diversity and acceptance at schools, bringing together communities to create public murals, and even an appearance on The Oprah Winfrey Show, in between teaching art and creating my own art (learn more at differentjustlikeme.com, and https://www.differentjustlikeme.com/get-creative- for more about the murals).
Recently I began creating pieces for shows and exhibits that focus on social issues and current events. I consider it part of a lineage that began with that little girl drawing in the street with chalk, a lineage with waypoints marked by travel, college, motherhood, teaching, and writing. Empathy and kinship have remained ever present along the way, a notation of sorts that we all need a little of both as we deal with life’s challenges. It will always be a part of my art. I hope it shows our similarities and differences in a new way. I hope it stirs a conversation. I hope it helps people consider a different point of view.
To see more about Different Just Like Me and related projects go to:
Shoutout Socal article https://shoutoutsocal.com/lori-mitchell-artist-art-instructor/
SD Voyager article http://sdvoyager.com/interview/meet-lori-mitchell/