My name is Christiane Shillito and I'm a British artist and illustrator currently based in Los Angeles, CA.
I was raised in a working-class family in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, England. The first in my family to go to University, I got my BSc (hons) Biology degree from Durham before taking time off to travel and have some fun exploring the world with my Ulorin Vex modeling persona. What began as a temporary short break from academia somehow turned into over a decade-long career as an alternative model, playing muse for other people's creativity while travelling the world, and giving me a flexible schedule to work on my own artwork in a way I'd never had time for while studying full-time. It also began to sink in that an artistic career was actually a realistic option; something I'd been talked out of in favour of the sciences previously.
I grew up with a nerdy love for anything fantastical, whether it be folklore and mythology or science-fiction, comic books and fairy tales. My other great love was nature and natural history and of course all of these things have shaped me and my work.
Much like I used to use my own body to express myself with dramatic dance-like gestures for the camera, I always find myself drawn to using more twisted and stylized figures in my artwork. I prefer to paint fierce female and/or gender variant characters with a dark surreal or erotic edge. I also enjoy experimenting with different media and have recently been working on a project that makes use of my personal collection of stamps and antique paper ephemera.
Much of what I create is quite personal and often cathartic, reflecting an amalgamation of my interests, personal experiences, emotions and dreams.
You can check out my latest news over on the What’s New page and have a look at my art portfolio in the various galleries. If you’re interested in my creative process and having a sneak preview of current works in progress, my Instagram is usually the best place for that sort of thing!
Thank you for taking the time to look!
Online interviews: Beautiful Bizarre magazine (2014)