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Even if she started art later than most artists, we can’t deny the talent of Esther Griffith. She got bitten by the art bug around 2006 and fully embarked on her fine arts journey since then. Esther’s portraits are full of positivity, each piece is an intimate meeting with the model. Esther was born and raised on the twin-isle of Trinidad & Tobago, she explores the visual language of colour and form and is drawn to earth’s landforms and geomorphology, which inspires her expressive mark making and unconventional application of media, in order to obtain unpredictable and exciting results. 

C – Portraits and hyper realism, your style is quite unique. Through your magic and colorful art, we see the beauty and the joy of the people you painted. What inspires you? What is your main art inspiration ?

E – I am inspired by nature. Nature is full of colour, pattern and texture. I particularly love plant life, like flowers and colourful non flowering plants. I love how light affects objects in an environment. I grew up in a very green environment, so I’ve had the privilege of being surrounded by colour most of my life.

I’m also inspired by the human figure, particularly the face. Human beings are beautiful, no matter the race, or ethnicity. I love observing and painting the features that make us unique as individuals.

« Human beings are beautiful, no matter the race, or ethnicity. I love observing and painting the features that make us unique as individuals. »

C –  How the caribbean culture influences your artwork ? 

E – I find that the Caribbean environment has influenced my work more than the culture. Sunlight pours through most of the time throughout the year and that allows for a beautiful brightness, a vividness in colour due to the light on objects. I’ve been influenced by the light.

C – What are your main creative tools ? Brush, knife, oil, watercolor,  pencil…

E – My preferred medium is actually oil paints. I usually use a combination of palette knife and brushes; palette for the more loose areas and brushes for the realistically rendered parts. A key tool is colour though. It’s important to know which colours and paints works well together when mixed and how they react when poured. Is it transparent or opaque? That would inform my layering process.

I also do watercolors as well. I really like the unpredictability of watercolour as a medium It’s hard to control, which is good because it’s very exciting when art is expressive.

C – Have you ever had exhibitions ? If yes, where, when ? Is there any upcoming exhibitions ? 

E – I’m planning my first solo exhibition for later this year (if things work out, lol!). Thus far I’ve done group exhibitions both in Trinidad and in Canada.

« On the horizon is a body of work that is largely high key in nature. »

C – Can you explain to me your career path ? What is your job currently? What are your future projects ?  

E – I was actually a digital artist first; I made a living for years designing websites, posters and ads for print. I currently am a full time painter, although I at times do digital design on request. On the horizon is a body of work that is largely high key in nature. I’m really looking forward to this because for the most part I’ve painted with start contrasts (intermediate to low key) prior to this.

C – What is the favorite artwork you’ve made ? Why ?

E – My favourite piece thus far is one of my first, “The Girl with the Thousand Yard Stare”. It was a breakthrough painting for me, both technique-wise and emotionally. I’ve learned a lot since that piece though, because as a practicing artist growth is inevitable.

You learn what to embrace and what to leave behind throughout the years. It was the first painting that helped me to be a bit more free in my mark-making and mental approach.

Esther is a wonderful discover (and person), you can feel her sensibility in this interview. Everything stops, for an instant, during the reading of the article, for discover this colorful world. Now, keep your feet on the ground, and let us a like/comment bellow !

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