Artist Eli Halpin is known for her lavish depictions of animals and their wild appetites. The Texas-based painter creates her art on recycled hollow-core doors that have been sliced, sanded and prepared. We caught up with her recently:
GB: What inspires the primal subject-matter you often choose?
EH: I grew up in Alaska. There were bears that could eat you and eagles that could take little babies away. There was just lots of danger—everything could kill you there.
GB: How would you describe your art?
EH: Cheeks, paws, claws, and whiskers. I paint a lot of more innocent paintings, too. It’s all the same idea, really: I like to paint about eating, living together, working together.
GB: Do you ever face artist’s block?
EH: (laughing) I have the opposite of that! There’s an infinite amount of inspiration. I have a 110-pound Rottweiler [Cashius] who eats raw meat—working and eating are all around me. I have so many ideas of things to paint that I could never paint them all.
GB: That must make being a full-time working artist a little easier.
EH: Yes. I have to paint all the time and have new work all the time to keep people’s interest. I owe that to people who are interested in my art.