July 1st held special meaning for me this year. As I set up and looked at the art inside my tent I realized just how much the intricacy and beauty of Canada has influenced me. Animals like the grizzly stretched his body along a wind swept terrain, the barn owl peeped out from his nest and inquisitively watched the passersby. All these paintings had been completed in a short time span and I was able to acknowledge how Canada has shaped who I am as an artist. I had spent four years traveling along all the major highways in British Columbia and Alberta, stopping at various locations to watch the wild beasts in this beautiful landscape. I drove across Canada and visited the Yukon where I watched bison rule the highways. All these experiences undoubtedly gave way to the rupture of Canadian art I have made these past two years.. The accumulated paintings were renditions from mother nature, the colors blue and green dominating the selected subject matter I had decided to paint. For all the work I have put into expressing Canada I felt I have come a good length, yet I know I have much work ahead of me.
Something I have learned from interactions with the public in outdoor venues is that children are excited by my art. Little girls and boys scream “Mommy Mommy look look look!” as they come running towards my paintings and point at and name every animal they can see. This reaction brings warmth and love to my heart. It also makes me question if there isn’t a touch of naivety or innocence in my art, and what this says about my inner being. These children will also stand there and make little blissful inaudible utterances. Eventually mom or dad will ask them to continue on, and if I am lucky I will get a grin or a smile, and then like a flash, they are gone.
It is not only children who enjoy my art but also the more expressive kinds of people, people who speak of energy and Reiki. I was describing a couple of different pieces to a lovely women, I began speaking about a very large landscape and then moved onto a horse I had painted. As I was describing my artistic intentions I noticed her eyes were welling up. I asked “are you OK?” and she replied “yes, yes, I am fine, there is just something about this art that is making me very emotional, but it is a happy kind of crying, you know?” This is the first time I have seen someone cry from looking at art, and how honored I felt knowing it was my art influencing someones emotions.
Through the course of the day I had many people interested in my art, and it felt good to get that kind of response. However, as an artist it is also important to make sales, and I hadn’t sold a single piece outdoors all summer. I made a pact with myself that if I didn’t make any sales I would not be attending another outdoor event. Don’t get me wrong, displaying art outdoors is fun and meeting people enjoyable but it is extremely expensive and time consuming. But alas! The last half hour of the venue I made 2 sales, selling three paintings! Now I have a little more motivation sitting in my back pocket to keep me moving forward in my pursuit to bring Canadian inspired art to the lives of others. It was a great Canada day, and I was reminded of why I am an artist. Thanks for reading, cheers!!!