Liz Allen was born in Kent, England and studied her art foundation course at Croydon College of Art and Design and later went on to study Fine Art Painting at Bath Academy of Art. Following her studies, Liz took a break from painting, explaining that she had to make a living, working in London and Brighton but grew tired of the materialism she was seeing at the time and sought a different pace of life.
She moved to the Algarve in 2005, where she started painting full time and was able to develop her painting style. She also told me that she became a member of the Algarve Artists Network in which she was involved in exhibiting her work at many of their wonderful exhibitions all over the Algarve.
Liz paints still life, landscapes and places through the mediums of water colour, oils as well as her favourite medium, acrylics, and she loves to experiment but reveals that she always comes back to her own style and that her paintings perhaps capture a different side to her. Liz’s use of vibrant colours and attention to detail is definitely why her art stood out to me, I love the way in which she captures different places in the Algarve from different angles and with her own unique twist as well as using charming line and dot work. Her paintings are captivating and uplifting and, and in my opinion, her paintings transport you to a utopian version of different places in the Algarve, where we are able to see a glimpse of Liz’s imagination and creativity as it appears so freely through each painting.
Liz went on to tell me that her paintings are not completely accurate and that she sketches at different locations in the Algarve and then paints her sketches at home. She has a spontaneous approach to each subject she paints, adding that she has so many sketches that she has taken home and not painted yet. Liz finds the Algarve an inspiring place, affirming that the Algarve has the best light and that the nature surrounding her home is great inspiration. She added that "the depth of the mountainsides towering above me, filled with different shapes and textures of trees and vegetation; seeing the eagles soaring and gliding past while travelling on the roads, mists in the hills and valleys... clouds suspended over Foia and the hills. The scenery is dramatic and gives a sense of awe. "At first, I was more concerned with the buildings and towns, but over the recent years have been drawn more and more by the magnificence of the landscape. There are fewer people up here which makes for less distraction and stress, more peaceful and a feeling of getting away from it all.”
Liz also does commissions so if you are drawn to her artistic style then definitely reach out to her. She told me that her most popular commissions are the ones she does of people’s homes here in the Algarve and I can see why on her website as they are all unique and make for a special keepsake. Liz hopes to do more exhibitions in the future and is happy with how much her art has evolved over time.
If you would like to see Liz’s work in person, please check out her current exhibition at Ochala Casa da Cha on 12 Rua Dr. Samora Gil in Monchique where they are displayed in all their glory from Monday to Friday from 10am until 6pm. Similarly, Liz has an open studio where you can also see her work in person which is by appointment and you can book some time there on her website.
It is important to note that, Liz also does beautiful greetings cards which are perfect for this time of year and a great variety of hand painted prints in which she has reproduced some of her paintings and which come in various sizes, ready to transform any room they are in and leave you feeling uplifted! For more information about Liz Allen and to get in touch please see https://liz-allen.com/ where you can also receive regular updates by signing up to her newsletter or similarly, you can keep up to date with all her work on Facebook @LizAllenArt.
Following undertaking her university degree in English with American Literature in the UK, Cristina da Costa Brookes moved back to Portugal to pursue a career in Journalism, where she has worked at The Portugal News for 3 years. Cristina’s passion lies with Arts & Culture as well as sharing all important community-related news.