When did you first become interested in art?
I have been drawing all my life. It is my personal expression of myself, and how I see and feel about the world.
What style of art do you use most?
I like to draw. I use pencils, colored pencils, and pens. It is my most comfortable medium. Some have described my style as line art, as I like to add finer details by using various patterned lines. It adds a tribal feel to all I do.
Has your style changed from when you first began as an artist?
Yes, and no. I have continued to develop my style, but the main form of detail work has remained the same. Each piece has it’s own feel.
What medium do you use?
Pencils, colored, and lead. I also like to use pens, especially gel inks. They give a painted feel to my work.
What made you choose that medium?
I love the details this medium affords me. Each pencil stroke is carefully considered. I feel a great deal of accomplishment from the effort and time that goes into it.
Do your ideas come from life or imagination?
Definitely from both. I love nature, all all that is in it. I blend both what I see in nature, but my imagination takes over, and creates how I see the things nature has already created.
How do you choose your images and colours?
They are somewhat chosen by me before a piece begins. I have a general idea at first, but I allow the picture to come through as I go. Sometimes the colours seem to chose themselves.
Who is your favourite artist?
What is your favourite piece of work by yourself?
Hard to say. For sure “Hunters”, “Life Cycle”, and “Mother Earth”.
How much time (on average) does it take to complete a work?
It takes anywhere from a day to many weeks. Sometimes I cannot stop working on a piece until it is done, other times I need to put it down and come back to it.
How well do you take criticism?
Criticism can be hard to take, however, it is always appreciated. It has helped me to continue my development as an artist.
What do you do to overcome a ‘block’?
Blocks come and go. Usually, if a piece has me blocked, I put it away for a time, then come back to it when the feel is “right”. I use these times to walk away for a bit and allow my imagination to take over again. When this has happened, the piece usually turns out better than I had hoped for.
How do you know something is ‘finished’? Is it easy to walk away?
That is hard to say. I am not sure I look at any of my pieces and say “finished”. Sometimes a “finished” piece becomes inspiration for another work.
Have you had exhibits in galleries?
I do exhibit my work at a local bookstore. The owners have been especially encouraging, and have continually requested more. The support they have given me has been incredible. The store is called Lots-a-Books, located in Cold Lake, Alberta. I am also working on opening my own art gallery, located on my own property. There I will exhibit my own work, and also work towards promoting the art of other Aboriginal artists from Canada.
Have you any exhibits in galleries planned for the future?
At this time, just my own.
What are your plans for the future?
My plans include opening my own gallery, continuing my artistic pursuits, and living life to the fullest with my family. I am moving from Cold Lake, AB to Manitoba in a few weeks. It is in Manitoba that I plan to open my gallery, however, I will continue to show my work in Cold Lake, AB as well.
What advice would you give new artists?
Keep at it! You need to create, create, create! And don’t stop promoting your work. It is time consuming, but worth it. Great artists were unknown at one time as well. You have to show your work to get noticed.
Have you done any courses to help you?
Not really. I consider myself to be self-taught. Good advice along the way is invaluable.
What do you do to market your work?
I use the internet, print on demand sites, show my art to galleries.
Do you use social networking in your day to day life?
Yes I do! I use Facebook (under my wife’s account) http://www.facebook.com/home.php?sk=group_194722463879517&ap=1
Fine Art America: http://fineartamerica.com/profiles/elliot-janvier.html
Red Bubble: http://www.redbubble.com/people/elliotjanvier
My Blog: http://aazeraart.blogspot.com/
Are you available for work (commissions)?
Have you got hobbies?
Yes, reading, and writing are my favourites. I love to write both stories and poetry.
Where are you based?
Currently, Cold Lake, Alberta, Canada. I will be moving to Manitoba, Canada in the coming weeks.