[powr-image-slider label="Elli Merkis"]
All chalk drawings were made for the Atomic Rooster in Ottawa.
Elli Merkis is originally from Ottawa but has travelled across the country, living in a few different cities in British Columbia, as well as in Montréal for a couple of years. She was brought up in a very German household, where everything, from the language spoken to the food eaten, was in line with a typical German lifestyle. She has been drawing ever since she could hold a pencil, and recalls drawing a lot of with her grandfather as a child, at the grandparents’ old farm, where nature and birds were common subjects. She has been in and out of art classes throughout her life, and has also spent time studying nursing and design in college, learning a great deal from teachers in a Pre-Design program there.
Elli prefers working with a dry medium, most often with graphite, though she is interested in painting and wants to try other mediums outside of her comfort zone. With her pencils she tends to draw a lot of realism, possessing exceptional skills of reproduction. The line of artists in her family, her grandfather and mother, were great inspirations to her in her early life. In her later life, Elli finds herself drawn to tattoos, pinups and old movie stars. At the Atomic Rooster in Ottawa, a bar very involved in the local arts scene, she would often decorate promotional blackboards with colourful, eye-catching chalk drawings. There she also had her work put up for an art show and has participated in the Rooster’s live art sessions, sketching live models. She wants to continue making and selling her art, and hopes to acquire a dedicated studio space to carry it out. She knows that making, collecting and observing art will always be a part of her life.
Elli is currently living in Ottawa. She has recently developed an interest in making homemade jams and jellies, sauces and soaps. Other interests include making puzzles and playing board games, and you can often catch her at the Mayfair theatre or at music shows in town, especially those of the rockabilly sort.