My name is Eli Shaw. I’ve been creating art for 10 years. I’m a disabled American veteran. I’ve used my art in the past 3 years to heal and to explore mental illness from a very personal place. I served in the military for 5 years and deployed once. I have seen first hand how mental illness affects soldiers. My goal in my work is to bridge the gap between people with mental illness and people without. I want to create a better understanding of what it means to have a mental illness and where that places you in the world. My passion is using my work as a form of therapy for myself, to move past, visualize, and solve my own problems.
I’m a self taught painter. My work is surreal, moody, and bold. I think that art needs to convey a message to the individual, and not the group. I think that deriving your own meaning to a piece is as intimate as the creator making the work. I’m always so glad to hear what people think a painting means.
My work often employs unconventional means to achieve the desired effect. I often use real world objects in my work. Some of my paintings have working lights, and others have different mediums, like wood stain incorporated in them to make each work unique, and long lasting in the minds of its viewers. My work can only be properly described and understood by seeing it first hand. I hope that my work can be seen and shared by many people who see its value.