“A Day in the Life” with Multi-Medium Artist Camryn Carnell

In a world that sneers at whimsy and the joy of silliness, Camryn Carnell dares to embrace it. Exploring themes of space, shape, and bodies, her work is viscerally playful and dreamy. Her soft sculptures, paintings, and drawings host organic shapes, fluorescent colours, and patterns.

Camryn is a multi-medium artist based in Edmonton, Alberta. She graduated from the Alberta University of the Arts in 2022 with her BFA in drawing. With an ever-expanding skillset, she is always ready and willing to try something new to further her practice. Having worked as a styrofoam prop carver and now as a print studio shop hand, her interesting day jobs reflect her ability to pick up new skills. You may have seen Camryn as a residence of Arts Commons’ Lightbox Studio in April of 2023, or at disco in the park for the Edmonton Mural Festival.

Camryn’s kindness and compassion drive her ability to create pieces that speak to the viewers’ inner world. This attitude does not restrict her from dissecting nuanced subjects. Instead, she uses it as a tool to tackle topics like embracing ADHD and neurodivergence. Through her unique visual vocabulary, Camryn illustrates contradictions and complexities of the mind and body in a way that is accessible and engaging.”

-Written by Emma Guido, friend and colleague

Camryn Carnell
This summer, I began selling my work at markets. It has been quite gratifying to connect with people through my work directly.
Camryn Carnell
My work is imbued with abstract shapes, reminiscent of organic forms I encounter in daily life. This image was taken on a walk in my neighbourhood. The dark pink edges of the seeds surprised and delighted me.
These sketches were made from a window seat of a cafe. The combination of a black pen and moving objects as my subject matter makes the sketches loose and fragmented.
Here is a photo from my recent live mural painting at Disco in the Park in Edmonton.
This is my painting in the festival grounds.
This image captures what my Saturday mornings often entail coffee, works in progress, and painting in precarious places.
Camryn Carnell
Toned paper and pencil crayons are a combination I have been revisiting this summer. I enjoy it when the paper appears under the pencil in some spots; it makes the colour appear to be glowing.
Camryn Carnell
In April and May, I created a body of work, mostly consisting of soft sculptures, at a residency at Lightbox Studio in Arts Commons. Since returning, I have kept two of those soft sculptures in my living room as pillows. They’re really interesting objects to live with in such a casual way. I like watching friends unconsciously start to play with the objects while sitting in the orange chair.


Which ‘hood are you in?

I am currently living in Edmonton, in the neighbourhood of Inglewood.

What do you do?

During the day, I work as a shop hand. The evenings and weekends are when I make time for my artistic practice. I work in a variety of mediums depending on the physical space I have available to me, and what processes I am particularly engaged with at the moment. I always find myself returning to drawing, painting, sewing, and soft sculpture. Currently, I most enjoy experimenting with pencil crayons and wax pastels on toned paper.

What are you currently working on?

During April and May, I had the privilege to be an artist in residence at Lightbox Studio in Arts Commons. While there, I made soft sculptures using sewing and quilting techniques. Since then, I have participated in the Whyte Ave Art Walk and also did live mural painting at Disco in the Park through the Edmonton Mural Fest. It was a really fun collaboration to get to take part in, and I loved getting to watch what the other artists had come up with for their murals!

Where can we find your work?

You can find my work on Instagram.