Art & Creativity from Lara: Johnsonville Library @ Waitohi Community Hub

I wanted to take a moment to applaud the amazing creativity and hard work done by Lara van der Raaij at Johnsonville Library @ Waitohi Community Hub recently. Lara is one of the staff that works at my library, but most importantly she is an amazingly talented and very creative artist. Over the last few months she’s been kind enough to share her amazing talents with the library and has made a lot of great art that shines in the library space with the help of the tools in our library’s makerspace. Let’s cut to the chase and see that art now!

PICTURE BOOK SIGNS: I love love love love these. Lara drew these and then use the makerspace’s laser cutter to make the signs. Our children’s area was really lacking in signage around picture books, and Lara’s great artwork combined with very simple signs made in the library really liven up the place. It’s amazing what simple, creative, and beautiful signage can do for a library. I am a huge fan of signage that also shows off the creativity and talent of the staff, and these picture book signs by Lara do not disappoint. If I were a kid, I’d be so drawn to these signs and the art on them. Great work!


BEAUTIFUL BIRDS: There are these grey panels up around our library that came as part of the space. We haven’t done much with them as we’ve cut down on the amount of paper signage that we put up, but without something to put on them these panels are a bit dull and uninviting. Lara drew up some amazing birds (New Zealand is a land full of amazing birds!) and then cut them out onto paper using the library laser cutter. These beautiful birds now liven up the space and I’m always so very happy when I see them in the library.


I’m really thankful that Lara shared her creativity with the library and the community. These additions to the library mean a lot and really do a lot to give the space personality and a welcoming feeling to everyone that uses the library. Thank you for your art Lara!

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