Creative Spotlight: Emmalene Art

Emmalene ArtI’m a street artist, art teacher and graphic designer from Dublin. For as long as I can remember, I have had a keen interest in art. From the days as a young child sitting intently for hours drawing, it’s always just been something I’ve been drawn to, excuse the pun! In 2008 I went to Dublin Institute of Technology to study Fine Art, graduating in 2012.

Although I enjoyed the different mediums I got to use during my degree, I had always been curious and intrigued by the graffiti I saw painted around Dublin. So I started messing around with spraypaint and making stencils, I think it was in 2009 I made my first semi-decent stencil, which may have appeared on some walls around Dublin!

For a long time now I have primarily worked with stencils. I find the hours of drawing and cutting of stencils quite therapeutic. But I have recently been mixing freehand spraypainting with stencilling to try to achieve an outcome you can’t get with just one or the other. I love the control, precise line and small detail you get with stencilling, whereas I love the endless possibilities with scale and spontaneity when working freehand. I would never want to convert completely to freehand, but I feel lately I’m finding a happy medium with using both.

I suppose being an artist is a never ending progression, you’re always finding new methods of working. At the moment I’m happy with the combination I have going on, but I can’t say if it’s what I’ll be doing in a year’s time.

Someone in the creative industry that inspires you?

There are so many amazing creatives who inspire me, it’s hard to narrow it down to one. I have always loved the work of Keith Haring, it doesn’t matter that it was in the 80s, his work is timeless and I don’t think it will ever become outdated. I admire how he used his art as a platform for social activism, yet still managed to keep it fun and playful. I absolutely love C215’s work, he just nails it. The detail and the colour work brilliantly together. Smug One blows my mind. It baffles me how someone can be that talented. If we’re talking closer to home, Dublin is so full of culture and art, there are so many artists and creative minds. But I’m really loving Danleo’s work lately. I would get his work tattooed on me I love it that much. And I’ve always loved ADW’s work. I’ll be painting beside him at Waterford Walls so I’m looking forward to seeing what he comes up with for that. At the start of this year I joined the Minaw Collective, an Irish based all-female street art collective, and I have to say it’s really encouraging and inspiring to be able to work alongside such talented artists at different events and jams. I have a lot of respect for each of them in the collective.

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Instagram/Twitter: @emmaleneblake

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