I paint to connect you to the peace and tranquility of nature.
The British Columbia landscape is my muse, it's calm and beauty a sweet reward.
Happy sunflowers also make their way onto my easel from wandering walks through the neighbourhood :)
Nature calms & balances the soul...
Remember the last time you were surrounded by nature? How did you feel? What did you see and hear?
Maybe you noticed light streaming through the trees, spilling randomly onto the ground. Or clouds scattered against a brilliant blue sky. How about the sweet smell of Ponderosa pines wafting in the summer breeze?
My paintings are meant to transport you to moments like these, as you sink into a state of peace and daydream.
Why can't we stop staring at nature?
Patterns and textures grab our eye. Tree branches, leaves, clouds, striations in rocks - nature's patterns are everywhere. We may not realize but our brains love these patterns and look for them. Science has shown that they lower stress.
So we find ourselves staring at trees or mountains we've seen a million times before. Gazing intently... like it's the first time.
This is probably why I'm just as inspired when returning to the same hiking spots over and over again. Unpredictable sets of patterns, plus color combos that stir the soul - both spark ideas that get me running back to the studio.
My inspiration doesn’t end at Ponderosa pines or mountains though. Flowers do it too, especially sunflowers.
Their shapes and textures get me every time. Random, lopsided blooms make them beautiful in my eyes. And what a rare thing for imperfection to get the spotlight... I welcome the opportunity.
Sunflowers are pure joy in my eyes, filled with character and brightness. Late season is my favorite time to admire them, with half past their prime.
You may notice in some of my paintings, the beautiful contrast of bright yellow blooms beside brown and curled, ready to fertilize next year’s growth. Oh how they shine together!
Making art feels like a calling
Surrounded by paint and brushes, I sink into creativity and let go of expectation. Beautiful colors unfold as paint mixes, and I relish the first strokes on the bright surface of a brand new painting.
Making art has always felt "right" to me - like an extension of speech. And some days, I have to admit, painting feels easier than forming sentences.
"If you could say it in words, there would be no reason to paint." - Edward Hopper
Freedom to express
I focus on joyful energy, movement and bold brushstrokes. I play with shape and line, I obsess over the details of colour.
I mix paint, and mix again. There are countless combinations I could put on the canvas that start with the same few tubes of paint.
The possibilities seem endless, and days feel short.
Once an artist begins this journey of translating the world around them, life becomes extra inspiring and days bittersweet, as we know we'll never come close to capturing all the ideas that flow through our active mind and imagination. (wish me luck!)
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From then to now
Ever since I was a young girl, I dreamed of being an artist.
Yes, I'm one of THOSE people who's always known what they wanted to do! In fact, I've been absolutely sure I was an artist long before making anything that could be considered skillful.
For me, there's a strong internal connection with making art - it gives me peace and I feel completely at home, doing it. There are no boundaries, creativity makes things sooo interesting, and the possibilities can be truly endless.
I love being able to interpret something in my environment in a new way. To create a piece that's never been seen before. To follow intuition and make art completely unique in its marks and energy.
At age 12, I took a 6-week course where I fell in love with paint.
My parents drove me once a week to an artist's log home on the prairies (where we lived at the time) to learn and create in her studio. Imagine beautiful wood from floor to ceiling, and windows that looked out towards the natural landscape. It was awesome.
My childhood was spent in Saskatchewan. Long winters provided plenty of time to fill by making art. Drawing, coloring, painting, crafting... I loved making everything! So much that I would stash toilet paper rolls, buttons, paper clips - you name it - and store them away for my next strange project.
Even with this massive attraction to creating art, it didn't become my focus until much later, as I went on to pursue a more "stable" career.
Eventually my inner voice prevailed... and after over a decade in graphic design, I made the leap to full-time artist. I'd been living in British Columbia for many years, where my surroundings became the biggest influence of my practice.
Now I spend my days obsessing over which hillside or flower to paint next :)
One of my favorite things is to be in nature. So I have an ever-growing library of hiking photos / and an ever-growing list of things to paint!
I'm grateful to live and be able to share such a gorgeous part of the world - the Okanagan Valley of British Columbia, Canada.
Creating that connection between us, the land, & the things that grow and thrive from it, is at the heart of my work.
I paint in my studio in Kelowna, BC Canada, just three blocks from the trail.
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