[Artist Statement – Eva Maclean (she/her)]
Eva McLean recently graduated from the University of Glasgow with a Master of Arts degree in English Literature. She is now continuing her academic journey on the MLitt Fantasy programme. Her passion for both literature and art drive her to create illustrations that enhance her own writing. She dreams of one day having a novel of her own on the shelves. When she does not have her head stuck in a book, she can be found drawing for her art Instagram.
This piece is inspired by George MacDonald’s Scottish fairy tale ‘The Light Princess’ in which a princess is cursed with weightlessness. The illustration depicts the titular princess drifting to the top of a tall tree, while a long golden ribbon keeps her grounded. The falling blossoms indicate that while gravity is still in effect for everyone else, the Light Princess will float away if she does not have a physical, earthly tether.
The illustration is reminiscent of Arthur Rackham’s fairy tale work, as Eva uses traditional media to add detail with biro in a similar vein to Rackham’s ink. The hand-drawn mixed media of coloured pencil, pen, and watercolour lends itself to Eva’s style of creating enchanting images that tell a story. The inclusion of the gold background gives a rich feel to the piece which ties into the princess’ regal upbringing. Eva is drawn to creating imagery that has an enchanted feel to it like the illustrative work paired with Grimm’s fairy tales. The theme of Eva’s artwork usually depicts a journey into the natural world and adds a little bit of sparkle to the mundane. Eva works part-time in designer fashion when she is not studying literature and as a result loves incorporating flowing dresses into her work.
If you would like to see more of Eva Maclean’s work check out her Instagram @evacat_art.