Artist Ellie Baker is inspired by our UNESCO Biosphere's land and seascapes, its light and its ever-changing weather. We asked her about her distinctive work:
What is your background?
I have a Foundation Diploma in Fine Art from Central Saint Martin's College of Art and Design and I have exhibited widely across the Island over the past few years including at Studio 42, the Isle Contemporary and Hodgson Loom Gallery.
How would you describe your art?
I am a landscape painter, working mainly with acrylics in vivid colours. My work features the Isle of Man's patchwork fields, rocky beaches, dramatic skies, ragged gorse and dry stone walls. I work in layers and wash or rub back to reveal contrasting colours and textures. My finished pieces are bold, colourful and atmospheric.
How do the Island’s land and seascapes and skies inspire you?
When I notice that a field has been cut and is now lime green and then my eye follows its edge to the sky and that turns out to be mauve and such a beautiful contrast with the field. Or I see a dark rock that is pimpled with yellow lichen and then the sea washes in and the rock’s rough texture becomes glossy. I store all of these snapshots in my mind and then work them into pieces later on.
Do you work on location, from photos, or from memory?
I rarely use preparatory studies or photographs to create my work. Instead, I work from memory and imagination, combining many remembered elements from the rural land and seascapes. I work in my study at home rather than on location. Some work emerges as recognisable spots, others are simply inspired by them.
What advice would you have for someone attempting to capture the Island creatively?
Scribble and scratch and mix and match! Try out materials you have never tried before. Forget detail to start with and just experiment again and again until you see results that you love. Vary how you use materials. Try using them lightly, or very heavily, try them dry or with a wash underneath or over the top – and notice the differences.
Where can we see and buy your work?
Studio 42 in Port St Mary always has pieces on display or available and I take part in the Island-wide Art Festival each year in May. And I can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
Main image: Windy.