Artist's Profile
by Sieannen Bell, Editor of The Divine Animal: A Journal of Literary Erotica

           Imagine finding Maxfield Parrish working as postman in an Appalachian village—then imagine he’s married to a woman so gentle she can catch and hold hummingbirds in her bare hands. Fred and Lara Ellis are an artistic team as unlikely as this. They create homemade surrealism, photographic provocation planned and executed with million dollar imaginations and a five-dollar bill. -Allan Johnson, Poet and Teacher

          Fred and Lara Ellis are a husband and wife team who live and work in the Blue Ridge Mountains of northern Virginia. They create individual pieces of art while working collaboratively in some way on every project. Their work has been exhibited throughout northern Virginia and parts of the Mid-Atlantic region and has been featured numerous times in literary erotica journal, The Divine Animal.

          Fred and Lara's work is infused with light and shadow, with myth, fairy tales and a deep reverence for the natural world. While the subject matter is at times distinctively surrealistic the style is consistently down-to-earth, accessible and human. Their elegant use of  imagery evokes nuances of Maxfield Parrish, Michael Parks, Dali, Botticelli and the Pre-Raphaelites. Archetypal figures reach out to the viewer from the surface of the paper; in one picture a lithe woman wears a white mask as she arches against the surf on an eastern shore, in another a woman dances wildly across the hot sands of Death Valley. 

           Fred and Lara are storytellers and visionaries who explore the beauty of the human form with skill and a practiced grace. Fred has been refining his art for more than thirty years while Lara is newer to the form (although one would never gather that she is anything less than a veteran from viewing her work). Fred and Lara's grace and power are a breath of fresh air into the typically stale arena of fine art nudes. The viewer's eye will be seduced back time and time again to seek out the subtler details of each deceptively simple photograph.


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