Laura M. Browning is a Chicago-based freelance writer and copy editor. She has written for online publications Contrary Magazine and Is Greater Than, and developed a popular series on Chicago street murals for Chicagoist.com. Laura has written for print publications like Sheridan Road, Outdoor Illinois, and Green Building + Design. She is currently working on a book about her love of factory tours around America.
Laura graduated with honors from College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts, with a degree in philosophy; spent a year studying art history at Oxford University in England; and earned her master’s degree in the humanities from the University of Chicago, where she focused on non-fiction creative writing and art history. She’s worked for non-profits for ten years in a variety of roles, from Assistant Curator of Western Art at the Eiteljorg Museum in Indianapolis to Senior Conservation Writer at The Nature Conservancy in Chicago. She spent a year copy editing for Encyclopaedia Britannica, where she learned how to properly use the word comprise and developed an appreciation for ligatures. She has been known to copy edit just for fun.
When she isn’t distracted by super-cats Monte and Clarabelle, she runs half marathons, searches for new places to eat brunch, and complains about Chicago weather. Her favorite punctuation mark is the serial comma, and her favorite factory tour is Sechler's Pickles in St. Joe, Indiana.
The phrase Art Can’t Hurt You comes from a 2005 work of graffiti-art at the Eiteljorg Museum in Indianapolis. These words were meant to reassure museum visitors—who had come to ponder more traditional art—that edgy installations were also worth their time. The message was unmistakable: experience something new. Stretch your horizons. Come in. Similarly, Laura believes that good writing opens up even the most challenging subjects, making them clear, exciting, and inspiring.