Elke Foltz moved to Berlin all by herself five years ago. For her, it was new, challenging, but not something she was scared about. It felt fine, and it was the right step for her. With great excitement and a healthy dose of a little stress, Elke made this life-changing step. In today’s story, we talk about the journey and work of Elke Foltz!
For as long as I can remember, I have always loved to draw and create things. When I was about six years old, I used to draw my characters with different facial expressions: happy, angry, sad, amazed. I remember my mother asked me how I could draw all these different expressions, and I answered that I could draw them because I mimed them on my face. I didn’t need to look at myself in a mirror. I would do it by moving my face and drawing at the same time. I think it’s funny that I was using another sense than sight to be able to draw what I wanted.
At the age of 15, I went to a school of applied arts in France, which is more related to design in general. Then I specialised myself in graphic design. But I knew that I was more interested in art than design, so after graduating, I decided to work as an illustrator.
In Berlin, I took the time to extend my creativity to abstract art, and to develop my work on colours, textures and composition. This allowed me to collaborate with creative people from different artistic fields, such as photographers, graphic designers, art directors and musicians. My last collaboration was with the experimental music band “Pain Perdu” from Berlin. I created their visual mood and album cover.
At the moment, I am working on a series of canvases focusing on harmony and renewal through colours, shapes and fragments of canvases collected from previous visual experiences.
My work is focused on harmony and renewal. I create my paintings like a musical composition, but instead of sounds, I use colours and shapes. I like to paint all the elements to create a Universe in balance. Each of these forms, lines and colours cannot live without each other. This composition and coloured forms aim to represent my vision of life. Life should be in balance. All these must be in harmony and create positive circular energy.
I use multiple media such as acrylic, oil, pastel and ink. I love the combination of colours, simple lines and textures. I like to create a space where people can let themselves go into the painting. With the work I create, I try to give the viewer the opportunity to be guided by my colours and moving shapes, but also by feelings. It is my mission to create a joyful and meaningful encounter. This meaning encounter is based on the perception of a moment, a feeling or a situation.
With the use of a “meaningful encounter”, I refer to the fact that my art is also about being shared. The aim of my work is not only to make beautiful things, but it is also to create a moment, to capture someone’s attention and perhaps to provoke an emotion or a questioning. I present my vision of the world through my paintings and illustrations, but the interpretations and perspectives can be multiple. It is an exchange, an encounter.
A lot of work defines my lifestyle. I try to keep some time to see my friends, call my family and enjoy myself. Painting is undoubtedly my great passion, but I also love music and travelling.
I have to say that being an independent artist can be stressful because it’s an uncertain path. It’s essential to know how to evaluate your work and not to have doubts about deserving an income from it.
Therefore, it’s essential for me to be positive and to be surrounded by positive people who believe in me and that I believe in them. You feel better when you have lovely and honest people that you can share with, take care and support each other.
Society tends to make creatives believe that if you love what you do, it doesn’t deserve to be paid well or be respected. That puts all the sacrifices and hard work that went into working as an artist on the back burner. So I want to live and focus on getting the deserved compensation. Because I believe that when art and creativity would be more appreciated and the world would be less thoughtful and sadder than it is now.
I want to take my work into the realm of art installation, to share my work all over the world and to have the opportunity to collaborate with talented and honest people because I think it allows creation to grow. I hope that my work provokes a positive experience in all the instability and violence that surrounds us. In 10 years, I think and hope that I will continue to create and share my work because it is essential for me, but in general, I prefer to let life surprise me!