Eleanor Ward-Thompson

Earlier this year we visited artist Eleanor at her exceptionally well put together home. Originating from a background in fashion, Ellie now works between the two worlds. She is impeccably well dressed, but it is her Art work that has caught our eve. Merging the lines between her love of surrealism and the natural world, her paintings are of organic otherworldly forms. The combination of her natural forms against the surrealist checkerboard structures enables them to come alive.

Ellies home is very much a reflection of her work, with her colour pallets and block like shapes present through-out the rooms in her house. She sits on an oversized rounded pouffe and tells me about her work as I watch her organic checkerboard like structures float from frame to canvas behind her.

Hey Ellie, please can you tell us a little about yourself and your background?

I am a Yorkshire born artist currently living in London working within the fashion industry as a stylist and visual merchandiser. I completed my studies in 2018 at Central Saint Martins and suddenly experienced a fallow period of creative confusion and ennui. This is the point at which I began painting, hampered by a need to create but not entirely sure what. I began exploring abstraction and classical expressionism.

The delicate structures and shapes within your work are extremely beautiful, what inspires you when you're painting

I like to look at my paintings as illustrations of nature with a surrealist slant. For me theirs defiantly the delicacy of nature in there but alongside the jarring pop of cobalt blue or pyrrole red. This use of colour I find very pleasing. Honestly sometimes when I sit down to paint, I’m not sure where to start then I paint a giant circle of deep vermillion green or red and suddenly the ball is rolling (pardon the pun)

How do you know when a painting is finished?

Knowing when a painting is finished varies from piece to piece, with the smaller paintings I do on Indian cotton rag paper you have to know when to stop as layering up too much acrylic will end in a blobby overworked surface. Precision is something I’m quite particular about so on the larger canvas pieces I feel like I could keep painting and attempting to perfect forever, but ultimately every piece reaches its natural conclusion.

I know you make a lot of clothes yourself, who or what inspires your aesthetic?

When it comes to clothing, I’m driven to create garments from good fabrics that will last a long while. Once the Highstreet began to deteriorate and information on the devastating effects of fast fashion became more prevalent I found with the help of a degree in design I could be creative and more sustainable with how I dress.

What gives you the most joy in life?

My family, my constant companion, my dearest friend who is embarking on a huge adventure this month, and of course painting and all visual creativity.

Eleanor Ward-Thomson

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