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Valerian: Dark Fashion Gothic Portrait Art by Elaine Foster  





Elaine Foster


Strongly influenced by the café painters of late 19th century Paris, modern fashion photography, and the nightlife of contemporary subcultures.



Primary: Acrylic and oil on canvas. Black acrylic is used to block in the image; thinned oil paint is then applied in washes.
Secondary: 2-D mixed-media pieces consist of digital art and/or broken mirror, magazine clippings, jewelry fragments and other found objects.


Group Shows

Oct. 2009  "Something Wicked This Way Comes (#10)"   (Vancouver, BC)
One night show at Club 23 West, upper level.

  Nov. 2008  "Decadence"   (Vancouver, BC)
One night show at Club 23 West, upper level.
  Sep./Oct. 2005   "Models"   (Port Moody, BC)
Juried exhibition, Blackberry Gallery.
  Sep. 2005   "Hive: A New Works Group Show"   (Vancouver, BC)
Juried exhibition, Blue Cobalt Studios.
  Aug. 2005  "Evolution"   (Vancouver, BC)
Juried alumni exhibition, Emily Carr Institute concourse gallery.
  Oct. 2004  "Emily Carr Institute Alumni Show"   (Vancouver, BC)
Juried exhibition, Queen Elizabeth Theatre Gallery mezzanine level.
  Apr. 2004   "Paradise - Resurrection"   (Vancouver, BC)
One-night show, Atlantis Night Club.
  Dec. 2002    "Gothic Art Show III"   (Vancouver, BC)
One-night show, Ironworks Studio.

Dec. 2001    "Gothic Art Show II"   (Vancouver, BC)
One-night show, The Cavern.


Apr.-May 1994    "Grand Opening"   (North Vancouver, BC)
Grand opening show, Level II Gallery.


Aug. 1992    "Images and Objects X"   (Vernon, BC)
Juried show, BC Festival of the Arts.


Jul. 1992    "Arts 1992"   (Surrey, BC)
Juried show, Surrey Art Gallery.


Mar. 1992    "Visions 92"   (South Delta, BC)
Juried show, Delta Arts Council gallery.


May 1992    "Grand Opening"   (Vancouver, BC)
Juried show, SoHo Café & Billards.

Jun.-Nov. 1991   "New Urban Street Art"   (Vancouver, BC)
Outdoor juried show sponsored by ArtReach, AIDS Vancouver and Vancouver Step Magazine, 900 block Denman St.

May 1991   "Grad Show"   (Vancouver, BC)
Emily Carr College of Art & Design graduation show.

  Sep. 1990   "Emily Carr College: Student Works"  (Vancouver, BC)
Arts Club Lounge.

Aug. 1984    "Student Show"   (Vancouver, BC)
Arts Umbrella gallery.


Solo Shows

Jun. 2006   "Artist of the Month"  (
Liquitex Artist Materials, monthly artist feature.

  Dec. 1999-Jan. 2000   "Grand Re-Opening"  (Vancouver, BC)
Inside Out Bistro.

Dec. 1997    "Urban Portraits"  (Vancouver, BC)
Over the Moon Chocolate Co.


Jun. 1995    "Featured Artist"  (Vancouver, BC)
Stages Cocktail Lounge.


Aug.-Sep. 1994    "Elaine Foster: Recent Works"  (Vancouver, BC)
Over the Moon Chocolate Co.


Mar.-May 1993    "Elaine Foster: Recent Works"   (North Vancouver, BC)
Spirals Cabaret.


Dec. 1991-Jan.1992    "Grand Opening"  (Vancouver, BC)
Over the Moon Chocolate Co.



1999   Professional Picture Framers Association   (Jackson, MI)
Certificate (CPF). The PPFA strives to further the preservation of art and elevate professional standards within the picture framing industry.


1987-1991   Emily Carr College of Art & Design   (Vancouver, BC)
Graduation from 4-year diploma program. Major in Painting, Minor in 3D/Studio. Focus on Art History (Western and Non-Western), Pre-Columbian and Northwest Coast Native Art.

  1987    North Delta Sr. Secondary   (Delta, BC)
Graduation from the High School Diploma program. Received several honours in English, Algebra and Fine Arts.

1984    Arts Umbrella (Scholarship Program)   (Vancouver, BC)
Juroed 8-week visual arts training program awarded in partnership with Buschlen Mowatt Gallery.


Private Collections


Jezz (Nightclub #3) - Buffy St. Amand
Starlet - Anna Reinholz
Bloody Valentine - Anthony Pugh
Skinny Fiend - Lisa Apfelbaum
Queen Valerian - Tiphanie Maturo
Wild Thing - Jimmy Turner
Batiste Girdle (Corset #6) - Craig Schar
Coffee, The Birthday Girl, Chiquita, Daevina, Shower Girl - Maria Lutz
Keane - Leslie Behrens
Lady MacBeth, Straight Front (Corset #4) - Tiffany Barnhill
Long Over Hips, Popular Style, Habit Hip (Corset #1 - #3)
- Allison Lynn
Tango Sandal, All Patent, Convincer (Vintage Shoes #1 - #3) - Beth Windham
Party Girl - Gordy Smith
Waiting For Marléne, Contemplation, The Model - Bill McWilliam
The Madonna - Doug Foster
The Predator - Anonymous (commissioned)
Bride, Groom - Nicholas and Sandi Goethals
Café Vanity II, Emma, I'm Sorry - Keane V.J. Keil
Emma II - Lucia Zabrieszach (commissioned)
Coffee (Panel), The Model (Panel) - AIDS Vancouver (commissioned)
Bob - Morey Altman
The Roundhouse Café - Spirals Café
Mood Swings, Performance Anxiety - Ron Giesbrecht
October, Chaz - Brian and Dolores Foster
Stonehenge, Zebra Door - Lynda J. Baker (commissioned)
Devotchka, Lennon - Andrew Roberts
Lennon II - Trish Holliday (commissioned)
Self-Portrait - Joanna Brailsford

Pandora - Hermione Carsten
Zombie - Aaron Harrison
Emerging, For Christine - Christine McAdam













Commercial Art

1987-1992   Collectible Prints   (Port Moody, BC)
Original pieces hand-painted on clothing, fabric dying, silk-screen designs. Mural painted on front door.

  1992    BARE Wetsuits   (Langley, BC)
8 large trade show display panels
  1991    Hags & Harpys Clothing Store   (South Delta, BC)
Interior mural, business card & promotional graphics, exterior signage
  1991   Olympic Yogurt   (Delta, BC)
Large trade show banner

1990    World Championship Handcar Races   (Port Moody, BC)
Poster graphic and logo

  1990   St. John's Fishing Lodge   (Bella Bella, BC)
Logo graphic design and exterior signage

Articles, Publications & Media


"Retrospective Show" The Vancouver Sun (Vancouver, BC), August 4-11, 2005. Vol. 120, Issue 75, p.C2.

"Dark Canada" Stuck In Time Productions (Toronto, ON), documentary film. Scheduled release: spring 2007.

"Fostering Talent: The Art of Elaine Foster" McCann Multimedia (Vancouver, BC), 2005. (Approx. 8 minute documentary film, *.wmv format)

"Trendsetters - Emerging Artists" Art Business News (New York, NY). January 2004, p.56.

"Dreams For Darkness" Daisy Raven Productions/Burning Effigy Press (Toronto, ON) 2000. Issue 3, p.17 & 18.

"Aiming To Make A Living As An Artist" The Delta Optimist (Delta, BC). June 20, 1991. Vol. 9, Issue 21, p.1.

"Taking Art To The Streets" Vancouver Step Magazine (Vancouver, BC). June 1991. Vol.2, Issue 4, p.10.








Other Information

Designer and moderator of an online arts community (Ars Gothica), as well as my own personal site and online stores. Currently moderating three online forums.

An active member of the Emily Carr Institute Alumni Society and the Professional Picture Framers' Association (PPFA).

Creator of unique hand-crafted Gothic and Victorian influenced jewelry and accessories, available online at Art of Adornment.