Local Artist Series // Ebony Dew
Who are you and what do you create?
I am Ebony and I paint!
What materials and techniques do you use?
I have a big love for poly-cotton blend canvas' - the larger the better!
Favouring acrylics, I like the way they allow me to create quickly and add layers totally in the moment. They mix easy, remove and add with water and other mediums too which really opens up a platform for my creative exploration process which is often quick, intense and expressive.
As far as techniques, I favour layering - this creates so much depth to me and also adds unexpected surprises and textures you wouldn't normally achieve by painting a flat image on canvas. Normally I begin with a watered down wash, using towels and rags to create depth and texture, before adding patterns and colours and finishing finally as an abstract work or overlaying with a subject matter. It's also interesting to me to paint over old work - again finding unexpected textures and compositions I wouldn't have achieved without the other painting underneath.
What kind of inspirations go into your work?
I paint what I feel. My emotional responses to a place, a person, my own internal journey. I often say that you can tell what's going on for me in my life by looking at my work. Often exploring concepts in polarity, I love to pair and contrast masculine and feminine energies. Coupled with an overwhelming love for nature and the beautiful place that I call home, it lands me somewhere in the middle of internal and externals worlds combined on canvas.
In what space do you like to create most?
I have a beautiful little home studio that I whipped up in my rental property's double garage. Here I have been able to create some of my most favourite pieces, along with all the work for my first solo and group shows. I like to practice ritual in my space before getting to work - my ritual looks a little something like:
- Open all the doors, let the fresh air clear out the space
- Burn sage or palo santo
- Light my candle (studio always have to have a candle and nice smells!)
- Music on!
- Tidy up work space and prep jars with water and then
As well as this, I adore packing a sketchpad and some paints and painting out in the sun at the beach, using the salt water to paint also creates unexpected results which I think is so interesting and inspiring (along with geo-stamping the location by using the locations own materials, this is my favourite thing about painting with wild waters - the sense of a place is all but woven into the piece, how magical!
What has been your favourite or most important work to date?
There are 3 pieces in particular which are my all time favs - and come to think of it, all have a similar colour palettes and themes, but made at 3 different times and for 3 different reasons!
- Sentiments d'eau profonde
Which means 'deep water feelings'. This piece was the first of its kind, and the first time I ever saw one of my pieces with a frame. I remember feeling so proud and excited seeing a frame on this, I felt like the real deal. This piece stayed with me and still hangs in my room proudly.
Something special I made for someone, this piece was something I'd never done before. It pushed me so far from my usual comforts and in return developed into one of my favourite pieces. It is a painting of water, from a local beach, painted with the saltwater from that beach. Given as a gift, this piece was a game changer for me in proving to myself that I had not only creative skills, but also technical ability to create anything I could imagine
One of the pieces from my first solo show and the first of them to sell, this big beauty celebrated a combination of the sea, whale sharks and the bubbles blown from whales and dolphins (I think you can see my ocean influences coming through now). This was a crowd favourite amongst us all at the shows and sold to such a perfect couple who love her and have given her a new life in a beautiful home! This means a lot to me, my paintings are my babies and seeing the joy they bring to others is something I will cherish forever.