Canadian Artist Paints Famous Landscapes With Geometric Patterns

Hawkeye Island, acrylic painting
'Hawkeye Island', acrylic painting | © and courtesy of Elyse Dodge

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The mountains of Canada evoke nothing if not immensity, but this artist is showing us another way to see them, reimagining the country’s majestic landscapes as tiny, geometric shapes coming together to create the whole.

Artist, designer and art director Elyse Dodge paints both by hand and digitally, pulling inspiration for her unique landscape paintings from the nature she sees around her daily.

‘Vermillion Lakes’, acrylic painting

Her aim with the work, which feels like a seamless blend of the freedom of Impressionism and the precision of geometry, is to ‘capture the vibrant beauty of the landscapes that we call home’.

‘Hawkeye Island’, acrylic painting

Based in Vancouver, Elyse’s oeuvre works in part because of this clear contrast. The mountains she paints cut in their jagged angles, whereas her waterways and trees almost bleed colour, as the tones turn inward to each other likes waves lapping onto the shore. In this way, just as rough cliffs are in a sense the opposite of rolling hills, polygons become the opposite of spherical shapes and her textures serve to allow the viewer to delve more deeply into how nature makes them feel.

‘Cleveland Dam’, acrylic painting

Her paintings hence serve two purposes: to present a scene and to present the physical sensations that scene evokes. The work also acts as a reminder that things are not always what they seem and that a whole exists only as the sum of its parts; each part is therefore as beautiful and integral as the full puzzle.

In her own words: ‘I see the world in colour, in shapes and in light. The process of discovering, simplifying and recreating iconic landscapes has become my therapy. Through this journey, I have realised that even when you deconstruct natural beauty down to its most simple of forms, it remains beautiful.’

‘The Lions’, digital sketch

Elyse chooses her natural subjects with the help of Instagram, where she partners with various photographers, using their images of British Columbia as inspiration for her pieces.

‘Ayers Rock’, digital sketch

She then creates digital mock-ups of her ideas and begins to put brush to canvas, whether that’s a real canvas or a digital one depends on the individual artwork itself.

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