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The Essence of Realism | Alyson Martin

The Essence of Realism | Alyson Martin

While most sixteen-year-old's would be likely to spend an afternoon at a local boutique shopping, Alyson Martin spent a recent visit to The Chameleon’s Closet fulfilling a different purpose. The boutique has highlighted the works of local artists each month. On this particular Saturday in November of 2020, a reception was being held for the up-and-coming talent that we are sure to hear more from, Alyson Martin.

Describing herself as a strictly self-taught, trial and error artist, the works that she displayed showed a level of maturity and developing talent that is almost preternatural in appearance.

Alyson comes from an artistically inclined family who has always encouraged her to see the beauty in the world, much of it found in their appreciation of the Indiana environs they call home. She gives credit to her grandparents and parents for surrounding her with a variety of art mediums. The influence of oils, crochet, and photography shaped the artist within and gave her the confidence to display that art for others to see.

“I cannot remember a time when I wasn’t holding something to draw with,” Alyson says, referring to her formative beginnings under the influence of creativity. Drawing with crayons opened doors to charcoals and paints, and her subjects evolved from simple doodles to animated characters to landscapes and beyond.

While many children come to regard art as an activity that diminishes in importance as they grow older, Alyson seemed to realize early in life that it was a means of expressing herself and a way of outwardly showing who she is.

Though she enjoys depicting fictional things like hobbits and elvish landscapes with beautiful gates, it is the essence of realism that stands out in her work.

“My focus is on portraiture, and I feel blessed to have the ability to depict a real face,” she says. “I also like to create images of celebrities, but twist their features a bit so [that] it doesn’t look exactly like them,” she adds, citing famous names like Avril Lavigne, Anna Kendrick, and Mandy Moore as examples.

Her burgeoning abilities began to get attention, leading to her first commissioned piece, a Day of the Dead face from a photograph as an oil painting.

Alyson says she spends as much time as possible creating, usually while listening to music. Her work depicts images of what is going through her mind: her thoughts, her imagination, her feelings. She finds that she has been favoring oil painting because it allows for opportunities to fix errors while it is drying.

Despite having a featured exhibit plus being profiled in two local newspapers, Martin is not resting on her laurels or hesitant about what she wants from future involvement in arts. “I want to be an artist forever and ever,” Alyson says with a childish grin, echoing the answer she gave as a youngster when asked what she wanted to be when she grew up. “My goal has always been to be a great artist.” Alyson Martin is well on her way.

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