The Independent
Shallow Breath Exhibit - June 2021
It was in therapy when Elizabeth Selby heard the phrase “shallow breath.” Her therapist was explaining to her that breath is often an indicator of how you’re feeling. “And if you’re ‘shallow breathing,’” says Selby, “that’s your body’s stress response to something.” 

Her most recent collection, the title of which borrows from this therapy session, includes artwork from the past two years, spanning pre- and mid-COVID. According to Selby’s therapist, paying attention to our breathing patterns is important: “Just check in with yourself and ask, ‘"What am I anxious about or worried about that I’m possibly ignoring or numbing by looking on Instagram or watching something?’” This “checking in” aspect is a major element of her show. The painting titled “Shallow Breath” is the only one in the collection with a male subject — the man to whom she happens to be married. “I noticed I am so tethered to him,” says Selby, a realization that came during the pandemic, a year that was particularly difficult for her husband. “I am so tethered to this person that when he’s anxious, I have a stress response.  I get anxious and have shallow breathing symptoms. When he’s sad, I’m devastated.” “It’s annoying and magical at the same time,” she says. 

With COVID also came a shift in Selby’s creative process. Initially, the way she approached art was procedural and lengthy. “Once my energy levels were so low, I [felt] like I just didn’t have the energy for all that,” she says.“I was just like: OK, we’re just going to do the raw, bare minimum to get it out of me and onto a canvas.” Self-portraits make up the bulk of Selby’s work. “I’ve had models who are like amazing models, but I’m not the best at communicating, like, this is what I’m going for,” she says. “And you know, sometimes you’ll get lucky and get the image that you want, but it’s just so much easier working with myself in that way.” However, Selby does note the following: “Someone [once] said, ‘Every painting is a self-portrait of the artist.’” 

She hopes her exhibit is an emotionally liberating space. “I want people to be able to maybe feel empathy for where they’ve been at emotionally,” says Selby. “Like just feel that they’re not alone. That it’s OK to let yourself feel these things. You kind of need to let yourself feel these things so that you can keep going.”



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303 Magazine
A Self-Taught Colorado Springs Artist Creates Mesmerizing Hyper-Realistic Portraits - Jan 2020

In historic Old Colorado City, in a cottage built in 1909, hangs a painting of a Mexican artist on a living room wall. From the home’s entryway, you wonder if your eyes are playing tricks: the subject’s face is photo-realistic, appearing as a cutout pasted on canvas. From the tones to the recreation of light, the depiction is deceptive. “She has the most beautiful, perfect skin,” said Elizabeth Selby, the magician behind the portrait. Selby lives and works in a West neighborhood of Colorado Springs as an artist, specializing in oil painting. “I’d done acrylic, but it never clicked,” she admitted. “I was repeatedly discouraged; I couldn’t get a handle on it. When I took an oil painting class, it made sense. More than any other medium, I’m able to communicate with oil.”

After only a couple oil painting courses, Selby was quickly offered the opportunity to showcase in Colorado Springs, inside Ivywild – the historic elementary school turned marketplace. This first show featured a series of food images. “Food provides all colors … and every texture,” Selby explains. “I began with doughnuts … then more junk food: cake, gummy bears … Ring Pops.” 

Outside just a few formal classes, Selby is self-taught. Born and raised in Spanish Fort, Alabama – on the shore of Mobile Bay – she was homeschooled until ninth grade, then attending public high school through graduation. While in secondary school, she would often skip classes, explaining: “There were some I didn’t need to be in. I’d leave during the day and come back later. Some of my best memories are from my teenage years – being rowdy, no responsibilities … living in the present.” 

During her childhood, while homeschooled, Selby sought crafts to entertain herself. “My mom let me try any creative endeavor: pottery, sewing, woodworking, mosaic, sketching, painting, and metalworking,” says Selby. “My dad had his own HVAC, plumbing and electrical business, and he let me use his shop to cut metal.”

Since moving to Colorado, and focusing on oil painting, her work has now been showcased in the Springs, Boulder and Pasadena CA. She’s also been featured in both notable and popular publications, like New American Paintings, Fine Art Connoisseur, and Buzzfeed 

Moving past food, she now primarily creates portraits and figurative work, explaining: “I crave authentic moments, when people actually see one another … when you and a stranger lock eyes, laughing about something you both happened to witness. My hope is for my work to be a nod to the viewer as they recognize a familiar emotion … something commonly human, even if they can’t put it into words. I want to create connection.”

Before a painting is started, she only has a concept. After an initial idea, Selby takes photographs. She sometimes tasks professional photographers to take pictures of her or models – but she prefers snapping images herself. Often, a hundred photos are taken for a single painting. “It’s an intimate, vulnerable process. It’s the most subtle differences that narrows it down to 12 images.” 

She carefully chooses the final image based upon composition, light, and details that capture her imagination, adding: “Most of all, I choose what I’m emotionally drawn towards. This part is mysterious … where words aren’t welcome. My original idea may remain … but maybe not.” 

Once the final photo is chosen, Selby modifies it towards her original concept using paper, tape, scissors, and stickers, preferring a collage of tactile materials over technology. “A lot of times, when I’m trying to convey something deeply personal, I don’t have words,” she says. “Often, months later, I realize why I was compelled to paint. Sometimes, the end result is exactly my original interpretation, and other times it’s entirely different. I allow for happy accidents. Holding too tightly can stifle the process.”

Holding warm coffee between her hands, she reflects upon her career as an artist, revealing: “In the last year, I’ve had to decide what success is. For me, I want to communicate emotion and make honest, authentic work. I feel a release through painting; I have no other way to communicate certain things … I’m still honing my voice.”

 Selby had a solo show at S.P.Q.R. Gallery in downtown Colorado Springs in mid-2019 and was also part of a group exhibit last year at The Kreuser Gallery, called Gratitude.

Create! Magazine
Elizabeth Selby Interview
Elizabeth Selby's work is predominately female portraiture and deeply personal, exploring the idea of self and those around her. 

Most recently, Selby has seen how an ancient personality chart, the enneagram, has changed the way those around her see themselves and the world around them. The enneagram shows nine approaches to observing the patterns of archetypal human character structures--nine beautifully flawed ways of being. The inspiration from this chart has influenced her most recent body of work. Reflecting upon her own type, type four, comes much self-discovery in a series of self-portraits, specifically exploring the shadow side of being a type four. The four's intense fasciation with aesthetics, passion, romanticism, and the contemplation of their inner worlds can sometimes be nothing more than escapism. If they spend enough time in such rarified air, they might be able to convince themselves that those are the things that really matter rather than the mundane things everyone else is concerned with. This not only distances them from other people, it actually from themselves-- at least from the parts of themselves they don't want to acknowledge. 


The Independent
Artist Spotlight
Where has Elizabeth Selby been all our lives? We first got a glimpse of her artwork at Ivywild last year; she's the master behind large-scale, up-close images of melting ice cream, spongy donuts, and light shining through sticky Ring Pops, which leave you hungry and entranced at the same time. Her solo show opening tonight at S.P.Q.R., Food Porn, will only up the ante, filling the cozy gallery with images of comfort food gleaned from her upbringing in southern Alabama. Judging by the peak at some fried eggs, complete with crispy edges, oily yolks, and a spray of pepper, it should be delicious in every sense of the word. 

Our family-run business company has a long tradition in the industry. It was founded in 1982 by Joey Lord, who passed the business onto his son, Roberto, in 2005. We pride ourselves on providing outstanding customer service to order to guarantee that all of our clients are 100% satisfied.








Artist Spotlight
May 2018
New American Paintings
West, Issue #120
Fine Art Connoisseur 
Vol 16, Issue 3
June 2019
Art Post
Create! Magazine
Artist Interview
100 Portrait Paintings

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