After looking at Renderosity vendor EllerslieArt's digital creations, it's not surprising to learn she hails from the same hometown as legendary filmmaker Federico Fellini.
Like Fellini, EllerslieArt calls the shores of the Adriatic Sea and the town of Rimini in Italy her home.
"It's the Federico Fellini's hometown; we are proud about this," Ellerslie said.
But that isn't where their similarities end. Both exhibit a surrealist quality of dream come to life in their art. Where Fellini does it with film, EllerslieArt does it with a computer and paint brush to create mixed-media masterpieces.
She began as a 2D illustrator, working with mixed media. The Italian artist only started making digital art about six years ago, starting with Blender. When she found Photoshop, she really began to express herself.
"I really love it because it gives me all the tools I need to realize what is in my mind, usually bizarre, unusual things," Ellerslie said. Over the years, she has worked hard to master Photoshop, Illustrator, Blender and ZBrush, which she called her favorite 3D program. "It's different from other 3D programs I tried. I love it because it isn't a real 'technical' program. It's more like a sculpt program."
Knowing how to use different programs, as well as knowing how to frame a photograph and art theories, have allowed Ellerslie to create art from the ether.
"I'm a dreamer, first of all I'm inspired by my unconscious. Every time I close my eyes I see an illustration sketch and then I try to make it real," she said, adding she is inspired by "everything that isn't exactly real: dreams, mythology, legends, fairytales and, of course, surrealism."
She makes dreams into reality using her own photographs, vectors and 3D elements, like environments, characters and vegetation, and marrying them with traditional painting.
"Sometimes I use 3D characters as a reference or a sketch and then I work all around them to make a digital painting as in my favourite illustration at this moment," she said.
"I love this work because it really seems a traditional painting but it is totally digital: the model is Genesis 3 female rendered in DAZ and painted in Photoshop," she said, adding she developed a new technique for the painting, but she's not ready to share it yet.
She draws inspiration from Romanticist English painters like Caspar David Friederich and JMW Turner, as well as surreal artists. She also finds inspiration in contemporary artists like Niccoletta Ceccoli, Mark Ryden, Benjamin Lacombe, and Natalie Shau.
On the digital side, she said she loves Maddelirium's renders and characters.
"I think she has a great imagination," Ellerslie said, adding she's a fan of Biscuits, Swan, Rhiannon, Sveva, P3D, Cybertenko, DM, 1971s and RPublishing.
Another of her current favorites is a surreal illustration of a woman with poppies around her and in her hands. She used Maddelirium's Victoria 4.2, DM's pose and Moonbeam1212's butterflies to create a masterpiece rendered in DAZ Studio and finished in Photoshop.
"Most times I have a couple of concepts that I want to transmit with my art," she said.
The first translates roughly to "be yourself" or "stand out in the crowd," "because you are wonderful in your diversity. You and your life are a unique and wonderful living artwork, be proud of it," she said.
"The second one is about Nature, my goal is to show how we are influenced and deeply connected with what's around us," she said.
She combines these concepts into surreal and emotional art, much like her hometown hero, Oscar winner Federico Fellini.
"Everything that isn't real but fabulous and dreamy, sometimes gothic and scary" is what makes her dreams into reality.