Elly Smallwood is an artist based out of Toronto. I found her on instagram and instantly fell in love with her art. She reminds me a great deal of Jenny Saville and while she paints figures, her work feels very unique and current.
I connect a lot with her art. She paints figures and all their flaws which is what I am really interested in. I could not find an artist statement, but I feel like I get it. Her work is so raw and gestural but she is able to capture curves and a facial likeness that is really inspiring. Her sketches are stunning. I often feel like you either have a very sketchy, gestural, experimental sketching style, or one that is very clean and captures a likeness excellently. Somehow, I feel like Elly bridges this divide. Elly uses a thickness in her application of paint that gives her pieces a great deal of depth and complexity which I would love to emulate in my own work. Elly also uses color in a way that really inspires me. I wrestle with color a lot because I do not like it generally, but I like that it can be used to exaggerate and distort. I have been and am planning to continue to use color. I feel like Elly uses color, not for the sake of color, but for the associations it has on the viewer and the connection it has to its subjects. Color can set a mood, but that is an unintentional byproduct of her color choices. I love this aspect of her work and I hope to apply it to my future pieces.
I am an art student at Maggie Walker and this is the place where I talk about what we're making and what we're learning... Through this I can pour out my heart about my artistic experience.