When inspiration strikes, you have to go for it. And if artist Elaine Dilay had ignored that urgent voice nudging her to get creative, her talent may have never been discovered.
It was 13 years ago that Dilay had to stay home from work due to an illness. While she wasn’t well enough to go into work that day, she couldn’t just sit around either. Something inside her urged her to pick up paint supplies and start creating art. Satisfied with what she had conjured up using acrylic paints on canvas, she built up the nerve to show her hidden talent to her co-workers.
“I don’t even know where the idea came from,” she recalls. “I created two pieces of art that day and brought them to work the following day and my colleagues wanted to buy them. That’s how it all started.”
From there, she brought in more pieces to work and more people purchased them. Eventually she started taking custom orders and with that, the size of her pieces also increased. Dilay and her husband own Home Scene Renovations, a home renovations company, so she has a real eye for home décor and is able to understand trends when working on her pieces.
“Starting with acrylic pieces was a good foundation, I started with textured acrylics and then in November 2015 I began working with resin,” she says. “As soon as I finished my first piece using resin I thought ‘wow, this is something.’ I knew I needed to continue using it, I just felt it. I was desiring a change and I knew this was going to take my art to the next level.”
For the first few months, Dilay was using extremely toxic resins she found on the market but that changed when she got asked what resin she was using one day.
“I eventually got an email from a family member who asked if I was getting my resin from EcoPoxy. And I said ‘who are they?’ And they said, ‘you have to know them, you’re related to the owner of the company!’”
She immediately contacted EcoPoxy and switched from her hazardous resin to UVPoxy. The differences between EcoPoxy and the products she was using before were staggering.
“I feel like the differences are night and day,” she explains. “Obviously, with the toxic resins I was wearing gloves and having to use proper ventilation. I had to be away from my kids so I was working out of my basement studio so I could control the toxic fumes and scent. I had to open a window in the studio which was not easy in January and especially in Manitoba,” she says. “With EcoPoxy, I don’t need ventilation, I don’t have to wear gloves all the time and I can create it close to my boys without any concerns of them breathing in chemicals. My studio is now upstairs, only steps away from their bedrooms, and no one is affected. You can’t even tell I’m creating artwork in the house. That is an absolute joy.”
By moving her studio upstairs, she was able to double her workspace to accommodate her pieces which are getting larger. One of her most recent pieces was 8 feet by 6 feet. As homes are getting larger, the art she sells, whether custom or to retail stores, must also increase to ensure the scale is appropriate for the home.
In High Demand
Since she started working with resins, Dilay noticed a sharp increase in the demand for her artwork.
”In the fall of 2015 I decided to reached out to a few select interior design and home décor stores. I had my top five that I felt my acrylic pieces would suit best. I had just began selling in stores but it wasn’t until I started working with resin that things really started to pick up,” she says.
“I get inspiration everywhere: fashion, interior design, architecture, theatre… I take a zillion photos because I’m very visual,” she explains. “A lot of my work is based on colour schemes and movement I’ve captured in photos.”
Dilay works with acrylic paints, high quality interior paints like Benjamin Moore, mixed media and EcoPoxy pigments.
“I use many of the EcoPoxy pigments but the black and the white are my favourites because they are absolutely stunning! They are so rich and vivid,” she says.
Dilay has an exciting few months ahead of her. She has been preparing art for two show homes in the Fall Parade of Homes in Winnipeg. One home is by Arlt Homes and the other is by Artista Homes. There are 26 pieces between the two homes with a total value of $25,000.
“It was a big investment on my part but I truly believe the exposure will be worth it,” Dilay says.
On top of all of her professional endeavours, Dilay is also a mom to 3 boys ages 6, 5 and 2. But between art, bookkeeping and potty training, she makes it work.
“I’m juggling a lot of things. I do the books for our renovation company, I have three small boys and then I have my art. So a lot of times I’m creating art late at night, early in the morning – weird hours. I can get a lot done on the weekends as well because my husband is home to help with the kids.”
If you’d like to see more of Elaine Dilay’s work, you can visit her on Instagram.
When inspiration strikes, you have to go for it. And if artist Elaine Dilay had ignored that urgent voice nudging her to get creative, her talent may have never been discovered. – See more at: http://www.ecopoxy.com/a-profile-on-artist-elaine-dilay/#sthash.OqEBsBZx.dpuf. We revolutionized eco-friendly epoxy coatings and resins to provide a safe solution to manufacturers or users. Visit us online at www.ecopoxy.com and www.ecopoxycoatings.com. Check out our full page ad