I’m not sure how many of you are aware of painter and film storyboard artist Elizabeth Colomba; I sure wasn’t, and in case you weren’t either, I wanted to profile and share some of her fascinating work. What’s worth noting is that Colomba has done extensive storyboard and visual consulting work for many films including Romeo and Juliet, Beloved, Slums of Beverly Hill, Waist Deep, Next Friday, The Wood, A Single Man, Catwoman, Amelia and more.
For those of you not familiar with storyboard work, Colomba is hired by film production companies as a professional illustrator; she creates comic-book like drawings or sketches, which filmmakers use in order to help visualize the story’s narration.
Although she may be hired to sketch individual or particular scenes in films, according to a 1998 interview by tipjar.com, her work for a film like Rick Famuyiwa‘s The Wood demanded her to draw almost every frame. Colomba says, “My partner Kasia Adamik and I had to storyboard the whole movie. They had the money for a month, so we did everything we could. We didn’t finish it, but there was a lot of work. There were action scenes. Even simple scenes were drawn. You could read the whole story from the storyboards.”
Colomba is of Caribbean heritage (Martinique); she was born in Epinay Sur Seine, a suburb in Paris. Her passion for painting started at the age of six. She achieved a first class high honors degree upon graduating from college in Paris. She obtained work in the late nineties at an advertising company. However, she was disappointed with the lack of creativity and control over her work, so she moved to L.A. to pursue a career in painting and storyboarding.
Colomba credits Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio, Edgar Degas, Johannes Vermeer and Diego Velazquez‘ works as inspiration and influence over her works.
We rarely celebrate the work of those behind the scenes, especially Black artists. I love her Victorian-age paintings and the artists’ works she has been influenced by. I’ve always wished I had the talent for painting like this. Oh well. :)
Visit her official site at www.elizabethcolomba.net to see some more of her works and to read their very interesting back stories.
While you’re at it, check out her imdb for a full list of projects she has worked on as a professional illustrator.