It is difficult not to be amazed in the colourful world of Elyse Dodge, where geometry and organic rounded shapes are linked. The Canadian painter brings us to the heart of reinvented and voluptuous reliefs, on top of astonishing summits where the multiplicity of colours is a synonym of harmony. The artist from Vancouver manages to sublimate the art of immortalizing landscapes by sailing on the thin line between realism and imagination. We’ve asked her a few questions.
Hello Elyse! Which path led you to become a visual artist?
I was raised by an artist and a builder who taught me from a young age what creativity looked like. The kitchen table in the house that my father had built was always covered with fabrics, paints and jewels for all my mothers’ creative projects. Being homeschooled in a creative environment like that allowed both my brothers and I to use our imaginations and experiment with different mediums every day. In short, I would say my mother paved the way for me to become a visual artist.
How would you define your art, and what are your main inspirations?
I would define my art as contemporary landscapes which use elements of deconstruction, low poly and stylized details. Travelling and seeing new vistas inspires me to create new work. I also find a lot of inspiration from contemporary design in all of its forms – looking at the colour palettes and mediums used in graphic design, industrial design, architecture and modern interiors. Ironically, I don’t turn to art to find my inspiration very often, I have a deep appreciation for it, but it’s the views around me that push me to create.
We can discover a lot of majestic mountains in your artwork. Why do you like mountains so much?
Growing up in British Columbia, Canada, meant that I was always surrounded by towering mountains, rolling hills, blue lakes and ocean coastlines. Being immersed in the outdoors from the very start has helped me realize that it’s the mountains that make me feel safe and at home. There is so much natural beauty to be found across the Pacific, and it is an endless source of inspiration for me. When I look at the natural jagged form of mountains, all I can imagine now is how to transform them into polygonal diamond-like shapes.
What is your favourite illustration or painting among the ones that you have done?
It’s hard for me to have a favourite, but if I had to, there are two tied at the top. One of the ones that challenged me to step out of my typical colour palette and landscape is «Mirage» [picture above], which is of the desert mountains located in Rancho Mirage near Palm Springs, California. I painted this piece while I was pregnant with my son and I think it’s interesting because at the time I had no idea we would all be moving to California 11 months later. The other painting that I love is titled «Garibaldi» [picture below]. I love the composition of this painting and how the reflection is only in the blue and green tones. I also have fond memories of hiking up to that incredible view and diving into the turquoise glacier water at Garibaldi Lakes only a few years ago.
What’s next for you?
A lot. I just moved to LA 3 days ago! I am so excited about this next sun-filled chapter of my life and all of the work that it will inspire me to create. This city is so active, and the Californian energy and warmth are already flooding my mind with fresh ideas.
I just finished creating a 3000 square foot mural and a 120′ wide vinyl mural in Vancouver, Canada and loved seeing my work at such a big scale. I would love to work on more large scale fully immersive pieces down the road. Maybe even pair up with a digital or projection mapping company so guests can experience what it’s like to walk through my landscapes.
The last project I just finished was a collaboration with a developer combining illustrations of architecture and low poly mountains together. I would love to continue playing around with contemporary home illustrations paired with low poly landscapes, which there is a lot of inspiration to draw from in California. There are a few commissioned paintings lined up that will keep me busy for the next few months so now I just need to find a studio space in LA!
I also have a trip to Europe coming up in the Fall to tour some epic scenery in Switzerland and Italy. I am pretty certain that the photos I take from that trip will turn into a collection of paintings. Between globe-trotting, painting, and having a 1-year-old baby, my hands are pretty full these days!
Follow Elyse Dodge on Instagram.