Contemporary Statement Art: Boutique Animal Portraits by Amy Louise

May 29, 2018

Contemporary Statement Art: Boutique Animal Portraits by Amy Louise

Minimal and quirky, the highly stylised animal portraits of emerging artist Amy Louise have stalked into Wyecliffe Galleries and in most cases been carried back out again under the arms of delighted collectors. Singling out creatures with personality, the illustrative lines suspend the twitch of an ear and the chirp about to escape a beak with the deft touch of a confident painter.

Amy Louise: In the Beginning...

A day dreamer at heart; art and English classes were the only lessons in school to compel Amy Louise back to reality. Encouraged by her aunt whose years of experience as an art teacher had trained the eye to recognise young talent, she offered advice and support to nurture her creativity. With a close-knit family endearingly likened to the Blue Peter culture of making everything themselves, inventiveness is clearly in the soul.

Amy Louise's Inspirations

Inspired by a cornucopia of sources ranging from the arts and crafts movement pioneered by British textile designer and poet William Morris, to the exuberant markings of Quentin Blake’s lively illustration for Roald Dhal; Amy Louise injects charisma into every portrait. The artist works from images captured of creatures in their natural and protected habitats, caught personally or sourced from professional wildlife photographers. The material is the foundation of deconstructing every feather or fur coat to a series of suggestive strokes. The artist’s mood boards and sketchbooks are therefore an interesting blend of the study of realism, colour and personality.

International travel is also an essential influence; recent commission for Wyecliffe Galleries The Greatest Show, the largest work completed by the artist was born in the colourful celebrations of Indian legend.

“I went to India in 2014 for the festival of colour in Jaipur so I saw the decorated elephants there and it has been an idea in the making ever since. I recently watched The Greatest Showman and loved it and it inspired me to get my reference photos out from India again and also the title of the piece. Jaipur is home to a number of elephant sanctuaries and rescue missions, the elephant is truly loved and respected in this part of India.”

Creating the Masterwork...

Taking ownership of every aspect of the presentation, Amy Louise sourced the lengths of wood for the elegant hand carved frame especially from Italy, creating a cultural marriage made in artistic heaven. The next adventure the artist wishes to plan will be an African safari to discover the big 5 in the wild; a new zoology of creatures to interpret and animate.

With a series of smaller study works supporting the extravagant show pieces, it is easy to scatter Amy Louise’s work across the home. With a cast of flamingos, llamas, robins, hedgehogs, toucans and lovebirds to name but a few; all of the animal kingdom awaits as a willing troupe of muses. Supplementing the lavish tones of the plumage and pelts are the iconic paint shades of British Institution Farrow and Ball. Priming every board with a hand chosen block colour, ranging from the topically named Elephant’s Breath to the inky tones of Stiffkey Blue, these cool contemporary palettes are ideal for the design conscious. Daubs of metallic ink lick the soft tufts of fur and feather, highlighting whisker and eyelash. Coated with a final smooth layer of gloss resin, the colour is sealed and magnified, tonal wood frames are subsequently hand selected to suit the animal within.

A bright individual only at the very start of her path, Amy Louise is a breath of fresh air in the wildlife genre – follow her work by signing up to our mailing list here.


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