Internationally-recognized Australian painter Britty Em creates bold large-scale acrylic pieces whose symbols and stories charm and challenge viewers through a combination of playfulness, nostalgia, and treatment of serious themes, including loneliness, consumerism, and the unseen facets of everyday life.
Painting with acrylic on canvas, Britty renders ordinary scenes in an extraordinary manner—through bold colour choices, working at large scale, and juxtaposing objects and patterns to free them from their seemingly mundane status.
Britty’s brilliantly colourful work clearly demonstrates her influences—from her formal education in both fine art and architectural studies, to her upbringing having a mother who was a designer, to her deep love of pop culture. Britty received her Bachelor of Architecture from Queensland University of Technology and her Bachelor of Fine Art from Griffith University. She also has a Diploma in Art Therapy.
- Having my first sold out solo show at the age of 16.
- Having my work represented in international galleries such as London and Paris and New York
- Being selected to have my work featured in Create Magazine.
What medium do you work with, and why have you chosen them?
I mainly work with Acrylic on canvas as well as works on paper that also include acrylic, marker and pencil. I love to work with Acrylic as it is one of the least toxic paints as artist can use. It is easily manipulated and watered down and can be fluid to work with. It also gives me the colour choices to work with for bright bold colours which usually are a signature style of my work.
How does your artwork get from initial concept to exhibition stage?
The work will always be centred around a theme for an upcoming show, whether that is a group or solo show. I will then work initially with a sketch process, which is then transferred to a digital artwork so that I can play with colour schemes and manipulate the image and composition before moving into the final phase of painting. From here, I will draw the artwork outlines onto the canvas in preparation for painting. It is simply a process of painting the work and if needed altering colours and details along the way. I tend to work very methodically and structured, which I feel is where my design background has had a large influence.
Can you tell us a little more about your creative working environment/studio?
The current studio I reside in, is located on the same property that I live on. In the past, I would paint at very random hours so having the luxury to be able to work late at night close to my home was always comforting. I have had this studio for 3 and a half years now. I tend to keep my space very clean and organized, which I find can help me to allow more of a chaotic space to unfold during the painting phases.