Images by Teal Thomsen



Courtney Heiser is a painter and visual artist based in Los Angeles. See Courtney’s work at her website, and as part of FA4Collective shows.

Teal Thomsen is a photographer living in LA. She works as Programs Coordinator at The Lucie Foundation, a non-profit charitable organization dedicated to championing photography. See her portraits, travel and lifestyle photography here.

T-shirts can be all things to people, from a status symbol to a memory trigger. What do they represent to you?
T-shirts represent neutrality to me in a good way: you can dress them up or down, express your tastes in music, design, color or even politics, or simply be comfortable. It might sound a bit cheesy, but I see the T-shirt as a blank canvas. A plain white tee can bring out a person’s natural features. Rather than focusing on their clothes or accessories, you see them.

Do you recall your first favorite T-shirt?
My favorite was a Batman T-shirt that I took from the lost and found of my high school locker room. Ironically, I lost it in the same place I found it.

How would you describe your stylxze?
I think my style can be considered a blend of ’50s pin-up, ’90s grunge and my mom’s closet. I love prints, shorts and pants with high waists, and my hair is almost always a mess.

What inspires you?
Artists inspire me, and the things they create: music, paintings and architecture. Even simple color relationships I see when I step outside. Human experience inspires me as well. I paint a lot of memories of my family, my old homes, my past struggles.

What do you most like about your line of work?
I love that I can go out and create something with my hands everyday. It’s one of the few things that I find to be truly gratifying. It’s great when I can get close to the vision I have in my head, but it can be difficult when things don’t quite come together.

What’s next?
To just keep painting. I’m having a few shows over the next few months, and I’m working on getting some more. Also I’m planning on applying to grad schools soon, but I don’t know where quite yet—maybe here in LA or maybe in Germany.

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