Schoolhouse Art Studio: Eva Marie Magill-Oliver

Schoolhouse Art Studio was conceived from a desire to celebrate creative expression and the important role that art plays in the making of the home. In this new series, we handpicked five independent artists to create one-of-a-kind works of art that will be enjoyed for generations to come. Below, Eva shares with us her process, inspiration and the role art plays in her own home.

How would you describe your work and yourself as an artist?

"My work is often filled with contrast, but always inspired by natural elements. I use a lot of layering to build up interest and interaction while still maintaining a sense of light and openness. I like to keep my patterns and color palette consistent throughout my work while always leaning towards a loosely defined narrative. As an artist, my work has always been the best channel for me to effectively express myself. In that sense, I love to find new ways of allowing the work to tap into my own thoughts and reflections."

What does your creative process look like from start to finish?

"I approach my painting with a different process than I do my paper pieces. With painting, I begin by layering colors, textures, and patterns. From there, I discover the balance, shapes, and designs I want to keep. With paper pieces, they are more planned. I typically have a blueprint or image in my mind and I use gathered drawings and materials to create the narrative. For me, the objective is to create a finished product that is somewhat intentional yet loose and unstructured."

What do you hope to communicate, or have people experience, with your art and this series in particular?

"I always like to invite the audience in – keeping the work open and bright. Pops of color, pattern, and texture keep the viewer’s interest by allowing the eye to move seamlessly from one area to the next. This series, similar to much of my work, emanates nature and alludes to landscape, both rural and urban. My hope is to communicate calm while maintaining a playful energy and interest."

Are they any rituals or routines you follow while creating?

"Yes, routine helps to get my mind focused on the work. Mine typically starts by doing background work laying down colors and creating marks, patterns, and textural elements. While the initial work is drying, I tend to rely on my sketchbook as a way to keep the momentum and generate new ideas."

What role does art and design play in your own home? Do you have favorite artists; do you collect paintings or create special works for yourself or friends & family?

"Art and design play a huge and essential role in my life and in my home. It is a passion of mine to collect and surround myself with beautifully designed objects. I’m a big fan of paring down the living environment to the essentials so that each piece in the home has a purpose and its unique beauty can be appreciated.

Contemporary masters Richard Diebenkorn, Cy Twombly, and Agnes Martin are huge favorites and sources of inspiration for me. I am also loving the current work of artists like Stephanie Dotson, Gary Komarin, and Jody Fausett. I love to collect new work. When I purchase art, it’s solely based on feeling and emotion. What the work says to me and how it makes me feel is the only thing that matters when it comes to an investment in artwork.

My own personal style is modern and minimal with a touch of bohemian. I love the clean, intentional lines of modern furniture and design but love to see it contrasted with antique prints and color palettes. I cherish the personal and unique objects I have collected during my travels as well. My husband and I lived in France for several years and the treasures I found at local 'brocantes' and street markets are scattered throughout our home. I love the idea and sentiment that items like this will continue to be collected and cherished throughout our lives. They create a home and décor style that is beautiful, rich, and completely personal."


| Shop Eva's original work in Schoolhouse Art Studio |