No matter what happens in the world, we will always have art.

Our creativity can console us, motivate us, heal us and empower us. That is what we were feeling when piecing together our Top 10 Artists to Watch in October. There are so many talented artists in the world, so we wanted to share some of our favorites with you!

1Ella Nilsson

it must be awful when i talk about my dreams
isn’t it boring when i talk about my dreams

Painter Ella Nilsson found her inspiration for her newest series while she was asleep.

Her Dream Series plays with juxtaposition. She explores the “subconscious and conscious, inside and outside oneself.” Just as dreams are unpredictable, she wanted her artwork to take the viewer along for the ride in an effort to inspire empathy and question perception.

@handybitches | Website

2Nick McCann

Bienvenidos al Desierto
Rebirth from Above

Nick McCann’s minimal style and vibrant use of color is at the forefront of his series entitled Desert of the Soul.

Nick, a born and raised Austinite, combines the many “states” of his being throughout each piece. Elements of his dream state, living state and home state all blend together. As Nick continues to create art, he encourages others to do the same. His pay-it-forward attitude towards living out a life of creativity is something we can definitely get behind.

@nickmctrickartwork | Website

3Paulina Fricke

Females are Strong

Paulina’s quirky catchphrases are what first caught our attention.

She combines a variety of techniques including watercolor and hand lettering to bring her thoughts, however silly, into fruition. It is her take on “sassy inspirational quotes.”

@theladyderp | Website

4Juan Villegas

Systematic Adaptation

Austin artist Juan Villegas combines surreal elements to his paintings and murals that can be seen all over town.

His paintings serve as experiences, inviting viewers in to “step into a higher consciousness” and escape from reality. Typically, Juan incorporates birds, female figures and large eyes into his work. His style is shaped by his combination of juxtaposing elements, giving a visual to the place where fantasy and reality collide.

@villegasartist | Website

5Elizabeth Carrington

Never Trust a Hippie

Color, pop art, graffiti, collage, screen printing. Elizabeth Carrington can do it all.

Within her work, she combines these mediums, often commenting on pop culture and “paying homage to times of revolution and upheaval that move the needle of society’s moral compass.”

Her recent work explores identity and nostalgia for “the idealized days of youth.” Every piece she creates is informed from her past experiences, and she often adds elements of whimsy and fun to engage the viewer.


6Shannon Boxell

I was first introduced to Shannon’s work when we featured her illustrations in Issue 09: Dream State.

Her signature bright colors and humor find their way into all of her work, creating art that doesn’t take itself too seriously. Along with illustrations, Shannon also hand-embroiders patches with characters of all kinds. My personal favorite is the Grumpy Gumdrop patch.


7Daniel de Leon

Bite Me

“Art to me defines my life. I would not be who I am without my art!”

Self-taught artist Daniel de Leon has been creating work for over two decades. During the past year and a half, he finally took the very vulnerable step forward to share and sell his art.

For Daniel, art is therapeutic and simply sharing it with the world is enough. He uses his craft to keep him from his “unhealthy vices.”

@dzulworks | Website

8Erika Leal

Austin artist Erika Leal creates delicate illustrations that border on the surreal.

At times, the thick outlining contrasts the soft pastels, and incorporates some of Erika’s talents as a tattoo artist within the illustrations. Luckily, you have the chance to wear Erika’s artwork permanently if you’re in Austin. She works at Shanghai Kate’s Tattoo Parlor.

9Cierra Rowe

The Hopeless Man
Tell Me That You Love Me

Painter, illustrator and experimental artist Cierra Rowe expresses her gratitude for the craft and shows it in her creations.

“Art is a reminder that we are never alone.”

She never forgets that as she uses colors and shapes to “confess” and express her point of view.

@cierrarowepaintings | Website

10Vince Fraser

Woman Warrior

London based freelance illustrator and designer Vince Fraser creates innovative and evocative artwork with vibrant colors that you just can’t miss.

His art is a combination of photography, vector illustration and typography that all seamlessly work together. Vince has described his unique style as “contemporary with a twist of retro.”

@vincefraser | Website

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