Francois Nielly now lives in Paris, but was born in Marseille. Her father was an architect and is said to be where she received her sense of space and construction shown in her work. With over twenty years of artistic experience, her work screams with color, sensuality, movement, and freedom. Check out her site Françoise Nielly or a short vid here.
Francois Nielly paints large scale referencing only black and white photographs. She has an incredible eye for light and shadow. As well as the capability to bring bright and vivid color into each piece. Her huge broad strokes seem rough and far from realistic. But with a step back, you are much closer to the subject with her approach than with most other more photo realist approaches. She paints as large as 78 x 25 inches. I fell in love with her work at first sight. I was always taught when trying to put a figure onto paper that it must have a rough fluidity about it. The more overworked and detailed a figure is, the less it seems to be real. Her style is a prime example of that school of thought at work. It is hard to find the contour of a face or the bridge of a nose but it works so well that way.
These are paintings and I'm sure if Nelly was asked if she was an illustrator or a painter she would choose the latter. But that being said, I would totally include her work in the field of illustration. She uses paint, but she is still putting an image from life, to a photo, further into each carve of her knife, with her own perspective and vision. I'd say thats illustration.