My artistic vision is influenced by the wild natural landscape of the eastern shore of Nova Scotia. I enjoy painting in the solitude of the forest and along the shore. I often think about the essays and poetry of Thoreau, Yeats and Mary Oliver as I paint and stroll. Much of my work starts with my own bits and bites of partial poems that I write and incorporate in my sketchbooks as I begin my preliminary drawings. They never see the light of day but are a starting point for the work, often written on the canvas and painted over. I like the lonely, moody places. The bogs and dying trees, fog and surf. These are quintessential Guysborough images for me. Everything I need to paint is right here.
I grew up in the small fishing village of Port Bickerton, Nova Scotia and moved to various places in Canada throughout my career, returning here to an old sea captain’s home to retire with my husband in 2014. This rugged coastal environment has greatly influenced my art through the years and instilled in me a strong sense of place and belonging.
I paint representational landscape and seascapes in oil, pastel, watercolour and acrylic, and always strive to achieve the mood and feeling of place above all else. I paint both in studio and plein air, but the experience of plein air painting allows me to literally sit in the middle of my painting with all my senses fully engaged in the process. This allows me to deeply experience my subjects and provides periods of intense observation and quiet solitude.
I studied architectural design and drafting but always painted on the side. Through the years I have taken several workshops with artists I admire such as Gerald Squires, William Rogers, Wayne Boucher and Albert Handel.
In addition to painting full time I’m the Director of the Artist in Residence program for the Port Bickerton Lighthouse in Nova Scotia. When not found in studio, I can be found exploring and plein air painting in Nova Scotia, Newfoundland, New Brunswick and Maine.