About the Artist

Hi, my name is Evie Spades.

I grew up in the small town of Westport, Wisconsin, located between Waunakee and Madison. I went to Waunakee for school, but I spent little free time there other than to visit my best friend, Jenna Norris. After receiving my driver’s license, I gravitated toward hanging out downtown or in the Middleton area, and I made sure to avoid The Kee, which held few pleasant memories, other than the amazing art teachers I had over the years. After graduating high school, I relocated to Madison, which offered numerous artistic opportunities and introduced me to a number of incredible fellow creators.

 I am currently a graduate of The University of Wisconsin Madison. Since graduation, I hope to use both my Bachelor of Arts in Communications and personal experience with art marketing to continue to grow my brand, name, website, and collections. My dream is to influence people across the state, country, and eventually the world to embrace and celebrate the body they’re in by providing them with a colorful new perspective on beauty.

As a child, one of my favorite days of the year was back to school shopping. I wasn’t looking forward to a new backpack, I wasn’t running to pick out that year’s school clothes, and I definitely wasn’t ready to go back and see the other kids (I was, and to this day still am, somewhat shy and nervous around the majority of people). The entire back to school experience was actually nerve racking for me…but amidst all that dread, I was excited to pick out a new set of colored pencils, crayons, or markers. Whichever package offered the largest color variety that year, that was the set I chose. They made my heart soar. Having access to art materials as a child kept me connected to the aspects of myself that made me happy, calm, and more comfortable around other kids, and I will forever be grateful for having learned that at such a young age.

As of today, a large portion of the people in my life are aware I have a history with a rather severe eating disorder that developed at a very young age. A number of factors led to drastic changes in my lifestyle, physical appearance, and mental stability. I became depressed and increasingly more pessimistic towards my own life and those around me. I constantly felt inadequate and imperfect, and I grew accustomed to living underweight and with chronic pain. While I have chosen to keep the more intimate portions of that period of my life private, I know some may benefit from hearing my story. 

From the age of 10 to the age of 20, I grew increasingly discontent with my image. My mental health deteriorated alongside my confidence, and my views on life became darker as the years progressed. I slowly learned how to effectively starve my body, shaping its figure using extreme measures and dangerous methods. While I didn’t see extreme results until years into the process, following the addition of vigorous exercise, I did experience health complications relatively early on. I “achieved” a thigh gap and flattened my stomach, but for over 8 years, I needed dietary supplements to keep my body running somewhat comfortably. I constantly struggled to maintain a safe and stable weight. At the age of 20, a combination of chronic joint pain, constant fatigue, numerous trips to the hospital, and the growing concern of my friends and family led me to make drastic changes to my life.

During my junior year of college, I started weight training to attempt to strengthen not only my body, but my confidence. Over the course of a few months, I developed a new routine, learned dozens of exercises, techniques, and machines, and began to see a positive change in my mood, appearance, and overall outlook on life. The hospital visits stopped, and the chronic pain has decreased significantly over the years. 

Today, I am 24 years old, and a successful graduate  of The University of Wisconsin, Madison.  Over the past few years, channeling the internal pain and confusion I experienced as I was growing up, I developed a collection of work designed to shed light on the beauty of the human image. While the concept of body positivity has existed for hundreds if not thousands (MAYBE millions) of years, in one form or another, there is always room to expand on acceptance and appreciation. 

There are still days I wake up hating the skin I’m in. There are still days I view my body in a negative light. There are still days I avoid eating as much as I should, and there are still days when I have no appetite at all. There are still days I break down in tears, afraid to leave my home, because the mirror is reflecting an image I believe to be imperfect...these are the days I choose to celebrate my past work and all the beautiful individuals The Colorfield of the Spade is dedicated to. These are the days I reevaluate what it is to be strong, confident, and beautiful. These are the days I start new projects, finish old ones, or brainstorm for the future. These are the days I choose to make brighter, because we all deserve to be content with the body we have.

To those who know the pain of this journey: You are NEVER alone.

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Photograph Courtesy of Dan

Bradley Photography

https://danbradleyphotography.com/