I was recently interviewed by Artists Uncovered – an impressive, juried showcase for international artists you might want to consider for your own submissions.  Here is the result:

1. How long have you been an artist?Ellen Palestrant artist

Ever since I was a child, I have created in different forms, generally propelled by a desire to explore an idea and discover what it might become. I still continue to do so in many diverse yet interconnected areas. Although I had illustrated a number of my books in black and white, I only started actually painting about eight years ago and immediately fell in love with the process.

2. What is your preferred medium and roughly what is the process for creating your work?

Acrylics and inks are my preferred mediums. It is all a journey of discovery for me as I layer, texturize, and develop density and depth. I do this rapidly and in quite a haphazard fashion. And then, I move into stillness as I look for – and discover – glimpses of possibility to develop in often intricate ways. My art is abstract. I love bright, luminescent color, but there are also times, when painting a book I have written, that I introduce characters and landscape into the layers of paint.

3. Describe your life as an artist in 3 words?

Stillness… Discovery… Exuberance (although the order might vary)

4. Where do you draw your inspiration from and how does it affect your creative process?

Inspiration comes to me from those fleeting flashes of possibility which unexpectedly appear from seemingly nowhere – and I quickly capture them, lest I lose them. It doesn’t come from without but from within and that I find very exciting. One of the books I wrote and painted, is called THE WORLD OF GLIMPSE and it is those glimpses that inspires me to embark on journeys of discovery without any clear destination. Anything might be.

5. Who or what has had the greatest influence on your art and career so far?

Language and art all meld for me into a variety of creative forms. I have been influenced by the literature, and poetry I have read, as well as the abundance of glorious colors around me. All of this, I have subconsciously imbibed. Many people have inspired me in different and valuable ways over the years, but there is one person, Jill Glenn, an artist and writer herself (as well as an exceptional friend) to whom I will always be grateful.  She kept prodding me to paint the book I was writing, THE WORLD OF GLIMPSE, myself  – and I finally did – and have never stopped painting. I had been painting in language all these years and visualizing images in brilliant color – so painting was a natural extension of my imaginative writing.

6. What is the one piece of advice you would give to a new artist?

Trust your instincts and take chances. Be open to learning from others but respect your own originality. Finally, experiment and practice … and practice … and practice. The more you do, the better you become.

7. What is the one item in the studio you couldn’t live without?

To me, my bright studio itself is that one, entire item. As soon as I enter that space, I am stimulated to create.

8. Do you listen to music when working in the studio, if so what?

I used to listen to music and then realized that I had so disappeared into what I was painting, that I was hearing nothing. I had moved into another realm. So I now paint in silence.

9. What are the best and worst things about being an artist?

The best is the challenge of it all and the accompanying curiosity. The worst is when you have to stop what you are doing because it is suddenly evening – and you hadn’t even noticed.

10. Technology is a growing presence in the life of an artist, what are your favourite apps or software to assist your work and promotion?

I do use social media and video but for me, I enjoy the actual feel of the paint itself. Technology, however, helps me to realize the multi-media potential of what I am creating. I also design my own books, each page containing what I feel is just the right language, rhythm and visual choices. Without the help of technology, though, I could not bring the final products into being.