|The Cambrian staff in the 1970's|
Shown in the newspaper article is photograph of the artist in her studio - the only one I have seen of her working at her craft.
|Bogardus at work in her studio|
|Artist with her painting|
The Cambrian, August 18, 1983 – Page 13
Life’s episodes on canvas
Ellie’s paintings depict fat cats, dancing friends and more…
Story and photos by Shirley Howell
Ellie Bogardus pulls her acrylic painting right out of life’s most impressionable episodes.
Plucked from daily experiences in the kitchen or in her garden, with fat cats, dancing friends, at gourmet picnics or parties, her characters burst from the canvas in bold, simple designs and electrifying purples, oranges, reds, blues and greens.
Each with a story to tell, the images convey Ellie’s excitement with life.
“I’m just a born wacko – that’s all!” the Park Hill artist explained with a subtle smile. With a tongue-in-cheek, child-like quality evident, Ellie appears to relish the idea of unfolding a story.
“They’re like my children,” she said. “They’re something that come from me. And they do have a story behind them.”
One enormous painting call “The Streaker,” currently on exhibit at the Cambria Coast Gallery, paints the story of a naked man about to job through a park full of people. The viewer observes that, upon his jaunt down the winding path, the streaker will encounter a nun with some children, three old men, a woman eating a sandwich, a mother pushing a baby stroller and more, with a good possibility that he may upset all of them.
Another painting, depicting a sleeping cat (a favorite subject), a burning table lamp and a bird stepping out of a cage in the background, is aptly named “Impending Disaster.”
“You know something is going to happen,” Ellie says with a twinkle in her eyes.
A native of Long Beach, Ellie attended Chouinard Art School in Lost Angeles and has a long list of illustration credits, including the designing of background for the animated “Fractured Fairy Tales” and “Crusader Rabbit” and more recent Charlie Brown specials.
Following a six-month world tour during the 1960”s, Ellie settled in Paris, where she designed several award-winnings films for Les Cinemastes.
Although she insists that other artists have not influenced her work and that she has never had to “search around to find a style,” Ellie became familiar with the work of Henri Matisse after friends pointed out the resemblance between her work and the impressionist painter’s.
“I did some research one day and found out that he was born in Cateau, France, and didn’t live far from a town called Cambrai,” she disclosed. “And he also died the same year I went into school. I thought that was sort of strange – I don’t know if there is such a thing as split souls.”
When Ellie is not working in her enormous seaside garden or concocting a gourmet meal with husband Mike (lovingly portrayed as a pleasantly-plump television watcher in her painting, “The Man, His Dog and His Woman”), she is creating detailed backdrops for Garfield the cat and his friends to [gallivant] about in their upcoming movie.
The artist also has ready for publishing two children’s books and a gourmet cookbook that she has written and illustrated.
Several of Ellie’s painting will be included in “Creatures – Wild and Otherwise,” a show opening on Saturday at the Cambria Coast Gallery. A wine and cheese reception for the show will be held from 4-7 p.m. (The public is invited).