Elizabeth Cox – The Artist’s Interview
Elizabeth Cox’s amazing paintings and drawings reveal Elizabeth’s passion and attention to detail to her art. Just from a momentary viewing the viewer can see delightful, intricate brushstrokes that come together to produce sumptuously detailed artwork that assaults the senses.
Her ‘Water Collection’ has an ethereal depth, displaying vivid and varying colours, elegant shapes (water lilies), and beautifully painting koi carp, that come together in gorgeous oil painted tapestries.
Elizabeth’s animal drawings, so detailed and beautifully toned are well and truly jaw dropping, photo realistic.
You can view Elizabeth’s work and contact her on her website www.elizabethcoxfineart.com
Connect with Elizabeth on Instagram
She is also on Facebook
Please talk a bit about where you are from and where you live now….
I was born just outside of Toronto, Ontario. I was one of four children; two brothers and a sister. We lived in the city until I was in my early teens when we moved to a small farming town called Alliston, Ontario. This is where I attended high school and had the most amazing art teachers. I now reside in Wasaga Beach, Ontario which is about an hour and a half outside Toronto.
How would you describe your artwork?
Growing up I would have described my artwork as realism or expressionism/realism. However, a huge shift occurred a few years ago personally and I found myself wanting more color and freedom in my work. I explored inwardly and outwardly and my work moved to what would be classified or labelled as, impressionist. Presently I would describe my artwork as impressionist or realistic/impressionism. I am moving toward meshing a more realistic look to my impressionism.
How did you discover art?
From a very young age I knew I wanted to be an artist. It was probably the moment I stopped eating the crayons and starting making marks on a page. My mother always inspired creativity in our home. As young as 5 years old my mother can remember me telling her that when I grew up I was going to do “art” for a job. As I grew my art teachers and close friends encouraged me to continue practicing and developing my artistic skills. In my teenage years I created a business painting on classmates clothing and many long hours were dedicated to my art. Up to this day, it has been a journey committed to learning and practice. As an artist, I believe that journey does not end. I am always striving to level up
What kind of tools/paints do you use in creating your artwork and what do you like about them in particular?
I have fallen in love with oil paint. Especially water soluble oil paint (as I am not one for long messy clean-ups or harsh chemicals). The ones I use are Holbein Duo Aqua because they are vibrant, creamy and a dream to work with. Oils have a much slower drying time than acrylic and this means I can go back to a section and rework it or redo it. With oil paint I can blend and swirl and create more spontaneously. It is a really forgiving medium. I now paint predominantly with palette knives and with my fingers. Occasionally if my fingers are too big or a palette knife is too rigid, I will reach for a brush, but not often.
What do you love most about creating art and is there anything you dislike about the process?
I love the meditative quality that creating gives me. Sometimes I find it hard to start a piece, but I know once I do I will find the flow. Once I am in the flow I can work for hours on end and just be present with my work. As well, it is such a satisfying feeling when you have finished a piece and stand back to look at your work. Although, that is the very thing that is sometimes frustrating about the process. Sometimes I never feel finished, or that elements in the work need to be fixed. Usually I have to walk away and come back to look at it after several hours, or even the next day.
Who has been your greatest inspiration and why?
I think my greatest inspiration personally has been my mother. Artistically I have been greatly inspired by Van Gogh. My mother has inspired me my whole life. She is determined and tireless. I am so thankful to have been able to learn from her. She has always instilled in myself and my siblings that we can do anything we set our minds to. Throughout my life I have been immensely inspired by Van Gogh’s work and his artistic journey.
How does your personality affect your work?
I have a positive and upbeat personality. I am also an avid hiker and love to be out in nature. I need to be expressive and moving. I think that is why I sought out a medium that was vibrant, workable and more spontaneous. I always stand when I paint. I have changed a lot over the years. I used to sit and work on a piece for weeks, even months. Now however, I am more results driven. I like to have a painting done in a few days; or at least under a week.
How do you market your work?
Presently I market my art mainly through social media. It is a cost effective way to have your work seen by people from all over the world. I am also represented by Roam Gallery.
What advice would you give to an artist who has no idea how to exhibit their work?
I think that an artist starting out should make sure they are using the highest quality of supplies they can afford at the time. For example, the best paints and gallery style canvas. Research to me, is key. If you are an illustrator research the highest quality pencils, charcoal and papers. When your work is ready target, or have a goal in your mind where you would like to see your work. Do you want it in galleries, on-line galleries, craft shows, or pop up shows? Again I believe it is all about research. We are very fortunate now to have the world at our finger tips with the internet. So I would say; research galleries where you think your work would be a good fit. Then research how to present to that gallery. A resource that I found very helpful is, Starving To Successful, by J. Jason Horejs. As well there is a wealth of free information on how to get started on YouTube, Instagram and other social media platforms. Just take steps to move towards your goal everyday.
Which of your artworks is your favourite and why?
It is hard to say of my artwork, which is my favourite. I think the reason it’s a challenge to pick just one, is because I like certain features of various works. I’m rarely satisfied with one painting as a whole. However, if I had to choose one work that comes close, in my eyes, to being above the rest of my work, it would be, Midnight Crossing.