Jim McElvaney

Sheffield Based Artist & Creative

The world has brought such a vast space for interconnectivity and opportunity.

I had the pleasure of finding Jim McElvaney while on instagram and felt he would make a great feature for the site. I appreciate the bold ephemarality in his works.

McElvaney is a Sheffield based painter who can be seen on occassion painting outside of his studio.

Did your family support your passions or try and urge you elsewhere?

My family have always been very supportive. I come from a large family with 5 brothers and sisters and we were always encouraged to try our best at whatever it is we wanted to do.

How would you describe your evolution as an artist?

I’d describe it as natural.

Your work depicts inner conflicts, thoughts, and various emotions I can feel in relationship. Are there things you have not yet dared to draw?

The inner conflicts, thoughts and emotions you refer to aren’t directly my own, they are my depictions of what I see in other people and can relate to. I wouldn’t say there are things I daren’t draw when it comes to human emotion as emotions aren’t things to

be scared of. We are all human and we all experience highs and lows.

What do you hate about Creating?

Nothing…I’m an artist

What are you working on currently?

I’m currently working on a drawing for a summer group exhibition in Sheffield with APG print studios.

What do you find you struggle with most as an artist and as a human being?

I struggle with my mental health on and off and quite often that is triggered by my creative output, the pressure I put on myself and the anxieties that come with showing

your work. It’s not always easy.

Does having a presence online help you secure more stability?

It helps people access your work but I don’t think it provides stability. It was easier before social media when people would actually take time to do their research and

not just expect nice images to be provided for them to flick through.

What frustrates you about the art world?

Social media, and it frustrates me that I’m part of it.

Creatively where do you see yourself progressing?

I just hope to progress…I don’t know where and I don’t think it matters.

If not drawing & illustration what medium?

Mixed media painting. I’d describe myself as a painter and drawer.

What are 3 things you can’t live without?

My family and friends, is that 1 or 2? and Pen and Paper.. is that 4?

Do you think the art world is full of posers (Fake artists)?

Not just the art world!

How do you manage to stay inspired?

I’m not always inspired but I work in a way where I find the breaks from creating useful so that when I am in the studio I know what I want to do.

What were the early years like starting out?

They were a steep learning curve. Nobody can prepare you for the expectation of preparing a body of work for an exhibition. You will experience every emotion possible and

question everything you do.

Favourite book, sound & smell

Sex and Violence, Death and Silence by Gordon Burn. My favourite sound recently was the heartbeat of my soon to be born child. For smell…It’s got to be the smell of paint.

Why art?  

I could never understand why not.

Who is your creative crush?

Creative crush haha it changes a lot but a constant would have to be Marlene Dumas. Her work always amazes and inspires me.

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