I paint for love and passion. My work spans many different genres but is mostly about movement, colour and dynamics. Inspiration is everywhere and I love to work with the creative process. My favourite process is laying down a few lines and letting the painting emerge from the original strokes.
My studies have been ongoing for 18 years, beginning with a mentorship under Harry D. Wilkinson. He taught me the discipline of painting, and opened my eyes to ‘seeing’. In 2008 I completed my honors BFA specializing in visual art at York University. During my time at school, I took on the more applied side of Art by starting my own Studio-Gallery in the quaint tourist town of Bayfield, Ontario. It is there that I spend my summers, teaching, painting, and selling my work. Because of the touristic nature of the location, my work resides in collections all over Canada, the USA, Australia, and many countries in Europe.
Currently, I am based in New York City, figuring out what comes next!.
My Good Bye to Bayfield, published in the Bayfield Breeze:
It has been an incredible adventure running an art studio in Bayfield. It’s hard to believe that 15 years ago I was just 19 years old and naïve enough to start a studio/gallery in Bayfield from scratch. I still remember coming up with the idea, and while living on a farm, 2 hours away, I was hell bent on jumping in headfirst and spreading my baby wings and calling myself a business. I yearn for the days of that unhinged confidence. In just one week from the spawn of the idea to opening day, wild, fast and free, I threw up artwork on the walls, put up some lights, and placed a table and easel in the middle of the room, an open sign on the door, and there I was, ready for business. That first year was a whirlwind, turning strangers into friends and laying the foundation for the creative chaos to ensue.
The first studio/gallery it was all portraits, sunsets, and parents asking me to teach them and their kids. Each summer I would add more lessons to each week, and eventually every morning became overrun with kids. Then, while I was out at the Martha Ritz (now the Virtual High School) I was overcome by the idea of a new concept studio. While the waitress was taking my order, and serving me food, I thought how cool it would be if she was actually bringing me art supplies and I could sit there and be making art. This idea started becoming stronger and stronger and I thought, YES! Build an art studio on the concept of a restaurant. People can come in as they please, order the style, size and colour scheme and subject matter off of an art menu, then be given the entire set-up, helped through it, and have someone clean up after them. And so, in 2009, I opened the Art Barn. I had some wonderful help, painting the barn, putting in a pond and the gardens and turning a dusty red barn into a crazy art studio! Thank you to Helmut Becker, the Keightlys, my staff, Leanne Jamieson, Kyle Griffiths, my family, and the Wallaces, for first helping me get so much started! It’s unbelievable watching how easily people will jump at the chance to paint now. Seeing people grasp the concept and start throwing colour and joy around now is an absolute joy.
It has been amazing to have the support of the community over the years. It would take me pages to thank everyone individually. Every single person that came through my studio to offer a smile and words of encouragement and especially the ones who took the time to create a painting or buy a one or twenty, I am so grateful for YOU! Thank you to Bill Rowat for being so supportive and endlessly fix the pedal pushers so people can ride around laughing their heads off. Thank you to all of the families who have made Kryart an annual event and those who came daily! I love hearing about all of the cottages being fully decorated in 11x14” paintings from their kids attending the kids’ morning sessions over the years. I am definitely going to miss being covered in paint form head to toe every day throughout the summer! Thank you to everyone at Pioneer Park for letting me do creative paint projects year after year. The debut one, before the 1000s of sunset paintings, still makes me laugh every time I think of it. Every kid left completely covered in paint after slip and sliding down 25’ feet of canvas. And then, just before sunset a giant rain storm rode in, and everyone at the park grabbed a part of the canvas and ran it a street over for cover in the Frezell’s shed. Thank you to everyone for not yelling at me for ruining their children’s clothes. The studio has been destroying outfits since 2004, my apologies. Great art never comes without consequence!
I have always loved the freedom that the small town of Bayfield afforded the art studio. Thank you to everyone or making it easy to tromp kids around for camp, using the splash pad, and beach, and letting us march down the streets advertising dance and art shows. And of course, for the freedom for a bookshop to have chickens as pets and turn them into little town mascots, dropping golden nuggets all over town, thanks Martha! Lots of love goes out to all of the restaurants in town, and special thanks goes to the Pink Flamingo, for the endless coffee and cupcakes to keep my staff and me going all summer! Thanks to all of the business and chamber for making the town a destination. And Thank you to all of the people who have let me stay at their cottages and homes over the years. It was always a challenge to find seasonal housing, so thank you to the Poelman’s, Tillmann’s, Harrett’s, MacTaggert’s, for making that easier. The hospitality of the town will always be cherished, and I will miss everyone! And of course thank you to the Bakers for their support and to John, for letting me create the entire D2L art collection! I know that it is time to move on though, and I am starting a new chapter, jumping in to the New York City art scene and seeing what I can sink my teeth into over the next year.
I am so pleased to have Faith Patrick, who has worked with me at Kryart for the last 6 summers continue on at the art barn. She has been making some of the necessary changes so that people can book their time for lessons and has modified the art menu. The modifications should make it a little easier for people to understand and get the time they need. And as long as the weather cooperates she will be open through the fall. Book your lesson time with her by emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org. For information, visit: www.kryart.com
Lots of love to you all! And always take the chance to be creative! You owe it to yourself!