Elena Johnston (1985-2023) transferred from Havertown, Pennsylvania to Baltimore in 2002 to pursue her BFA in illustration from Maryland Institute College of Art and, later, a BA in art education from Towson University and MA in art education at MICA—all while earning broad recognition for her industrious artistic process, near-continuous exhibiting and collaborating with fellow artists, the publication of her 2008 volume Paper Kingdom: A Collection of Baltimore Music Posters, and her work as a teacher in Baltimore City Public Schools (2014-2018).
A prolific and passionate artist, Elena poured her creativity into everything she did. Anyone who had the privilege of hearing her laugh will never forget it. She was thoughtful and generous, a deeply caring friend, and an active and beloved part of the Baltimore arts community. She is deeply missed.