In the studio with Elaine Green

Favourite material to work with?

I work predominately with oil paint as I enjoy its buttery texture and blendability, usually on masonite using liquin as medium and soft brushes to give a smooth finish to the painting interrupted sometimes by heavier palette Knifing.

What themes do you pursue?

My work is always about expressing an emotion. No matter what the subject I endeavour to convey a feeling rather than spelling out the whole picture. If I achieve that then hopefully the viewer will come to draw their own interpretation.

How many years an artist?

Although I have always been creative I did not take up painting until about 12 years ago.

What should people know about your art that they can't tell from looking at it?

Probably that my paintings are not really planned I just begin painting, blurring and moving the paint around until a story is revealed to me, then I try to push it as far as I can. People often think I use spray paint and other similar techniques but really I only use brushes and palette knife and lots of stepping back and looking.

Which living or dead artist would you most like to meet?

I would love to meet Vincent Van Gogh, give him a hug and tell him that I get what he was trying to say.

Tell us about your studio. Location, clean, cluttered, big, small, etc?

I moved into a big house last year and intended to use the garage for my studio, but the views are all from the other side so after setting up the dining room which has magnificent views I thought to myself one day "Who really needs a dining room?" So I promptly did some rearranging and now it is my studio. I get pretty messy when I am painting but am getting a bit more organised with fabulous storage racks my partner has made me.

Art school or self-taught?

I did a few workshops and some oil painting classes then just began experimenting with paint constantly. I then went to TAFE and did a Diploma in Fine Arts followed by a Degree in Visual Arts.

Do you prefer to work with music or in silence?

Music is important when I work, mostly classical guitar or meditation music. I find the music that is playing will directly affect my work so I don't like anything too fast unless I am wanting to express that sort of a mood!

Favourite brush?

I love my 4 inch wide soft brushes from the hardware store, they give me just the right blur I am looking for.

Where can we find you outside of the studio?

For a day out I love to go into the bush and draw, taking a gourmet picnic along.

If you couldn't be an artist, what would you do?

Go back to living only half a life - art completes me.

Interests other than art?

One way or another pretty much everything I do revolves around art.

What do you collect?

I am a bit of a hoarder collecting all sorts of bits and pieces that I think will come in handy one day, especially for collage (which I never really do anymore). I have a large collection of shells and bric-a-brac from the beach as well as pieces of rock from wherever I visit.

What was the best advice given to you as an artist?

Not to fall in love with your painting or parts of it. I take this on board a lot these days as there is often one part of a painting that works really well but if it doesn't work as a whole I know I have to lose it.

Are there messages within your work?


What does your art process entail?

Lots of looking, thinking and experimenting.

What are your inspirations?

Other artists and everything the light hits in a certain way, clouds, rocks, water, trees, a bench top, a glass, skin.......

Which art materials could you not live without?

Soft brushes, liquin, oil paints - ultramarine blue, burnt sienna, cadmium yellow and titanium white (lots of titanium white!) soft rags, and chroma incredible brush cleaner.