Author: Michele Ellison
I am an Artist. I discovered this while living at a fishing lake, high in the mountains of British Columbia. Being immersed in the forest is an experience you want to communicate to others, so I found paint and paper. My recent series about women are expressionistic and explore our lives. I found a wonderful Farmer's Market where I have a pop-up Art Gallery every weekend. It's a great place to experience connections to community and beyond.
The Woman in Red is stretched tall and thin. It is more of an expression of her being, than a body type. She is in the fishbowl on display to the world and keeping her head above water. All the issues of life are at her feet and her head is clear of the waves.
I wanted to speak about the pressures and opinions that we face every day – in a visual way. In the transparent water of my collage is the floating city where she works, her home and the school where she sends her children. Everyone can see her vulnerabilities.
When I look at the results of my ideas on paper, I see myself and hope to engage with other women. How do you feel about your life?
I decided last week to make a collage art piece that could speak about girls who have been victims of violence – sexual or otherwise. The result is "Girls – No More" (14" X 16" mixed media).
The Black Car is the central point of interest. The ominous windows are obscured. The inferno at the bottom represents secrets buried and the violence that girls and women have experienced. Smoke vapour and dust clouds reflect how quickly "everything we are" can change or disappear. Truth tumbles from the woman's hand as it reaches out from the cloud behind the car.
“Soaring” over difficulties in real life is the theme of my new collage (20×26” mixed media). We all have luggage or stuff we drag around in our heads and hearts that we should just off-load. Engaging in new ideas or liberties is so freeing.
It's a feeling like no other when you take a leap to new places or spaces in life. The harbor setting is dark and the water below is murky. She is daring to fly over the city all by herself, reaching for stars and freedom from the captivity of Terra firma. She is dropping her possessions or past – as her bags fall to the water. I want to say, “try something new…no matter how small it may seem at first, you will learn about yourself and the world out there.”
Grasping hold of an idea or a fleeting image is like capturing a shadow. You can just see it in your mind and then it is gone. Expressing that inner experience or thought is what keeps me at my art table. I keep lots of notes about stuff and sometimes those notes turn into an art piece.
The "Stormy" girl is really my niece Tamara, with beautiful black hair, who is training to become a police officer. When I showed her my finished collage, she said, "I LOVE IT!!!! She reminds me of a Super Hero, ( Wonder Woman Type ) with REAL LIFE problems on one side of the door, and a peaceful happiness inside the door.