Meet Lizzie Christie, the British born artist who began her career in the fashion industry as a designer and illustrator, found success there and then moved into arts, to satiate her soul. Today, she is a celebrity painter. A member of The Wolverhampton Society of Artists, she also teaches art and portraiture.
My relationship with colour started when I began my first job after graduation from Fashion College. I worked in the costume department of The Birmingham Reparatory Theatre. My charge was the dying of fabrics to be made into costumes for the various stage productions. This gave me a fabulous knowledge of colour range and mixing.
Colour is a big issue, I am trying to write a book on it. What would the world be like without colour? How would it affect our brains? Colour and its importance in Healing? Can we see smell and taste colour? When I teach colour mixing, I do not support using green only blue and yellow mixed or black only blue and amber mixed.
When I look at my paintings I get a warm sense of achievement. I often felt sad when I sold them but it is ok now as I have them all on disc and sell them as prints, as well. So I now have the deep desire to sell them all and move to France. This is not as wishful as it sounds as I have a chance to tutor painting holidays in The La Rochelle Area .Please watch this space.
Studying Fashion has given me the grounding for my glamorous paintings and portraits. Having done life drawings for 37 years and fashion illustration as a speciality I have found it easy to progress to being a figurative artist.
My second job after graduation was that of a Fashion Coordinator, putting together outfits for the catwalk, which taught me how to proportion colour and form.
A garment is a sculpture in fabric drawn 2 dimensionally then transformed from flat to 3 dimension on a body. It also must be the right shape, colour, appropriate in subject and pleasing to the eye.
When you are young at primary stage the school teacher always asks ‘what would you like to be when you grow up’. For me there was no question, I always wanted to be an artist! However at eighteen, my father was not pleased when he saw me dressed as a 70s hippie, smelling of patchouli oil, covered in acrylic paint and smoking flowers. I was told an artist was not the right career option for a lady to follow.
My grandma had taught me to knit and sew, I made all of my own clothes and the next minute I was accepted for a 4 year degree course at Newcastle Upon Tyne in Fashion and Textile Design.
I consider my paintings are in the style of figurative modern realism. The Inspiration for my paintings comes from everywhere mainly people, dancers, fashion shoots and history of art.
My motto is ‘ She believed she could …so she did’
I have had quite a few exhibitions in the early part of my career and I may have another soon. Most of my work and commissions come by word of mouth. When I create work for someone I get excited as I love a challenge. It is also good to have a direction or a brief to follow as an artist. For example a colour scheme or subject. I think having too much scope can be time consuming. One needs to be in touch, mentally with your client to do a good job.
Art is so personal to the onlooker. I can’t say I have had any complaints so far as I am quite versatile in my subject and style. However again I say Art is so subjective
‘Beauty is in the eye of the beholder’ so one must think maybe my work is just not there cup of tea, so ok don’t take it! I have my favourite paintings and surely they have sold immediately. An artist paints and every now and then, boom the masterpiece happens.
Lizzie can be contacted at- www.christiearts.co.uk or