Getting to know Helen Shideler

Photo credit: Lyndsay Armstrong-Media

What work do you most enjoying doing?

I am a detail oriented person who, for some reason is attracted to complexity.  This shows in my art and almost everything else I take on.

What’s your strongest memory of your childhood?

So many. Ocean waves. Sitting under aspens and listening to their leaves dance in the wind.  Playing with friends outside. Warm sunshine.  Not liking bees.

Why art?

Because I can’t sing and really wish I could.  But seriously – producing art has helped me through some very difficult times. I get a great deal of satisfaction from painting. I have been drawing since I was a small child drawing animals over and over.  I can still remember when I discovered that you can add shading to a line drawing!

Upon graduating for high school I was fortunate to win the Clyde Finnamore Memorial Scholarship for Sunbury Shore Art and Nature Centre.  I was able to take a three week art course with Gary Lowe.  It was literally life altering.  Wildlife art in watercolour.   Cathy Ross was there as well.  Pretty cool. They gave me the keys to the place and I stayed each day as long as I could.  Did some Plein Air painting as well.  My first watercolour was of a blue jay feather. The second was of a large red vase overflowing with wildflowers.  See, complexity even at 17!

What memorable responses have you had to your work?

A few actually.  Once when I was working on Drama Queen a full sheet painting of white lilies, I had gotten distracted and painted in a house fly. Shortly after I had a visitor to the studio before I was able to get the petal under it painted.  The person was standing there talking to me and tried to shoo the fly a couple of times.  Still makes me laugh. 

Name something you love, and why.

Spring. Fresh Air. The Beach. Nature. Birds. Furry creatures. Colour.  Dappled sunlight. Just because I guess

You can see more of Helen’s work by visiting her website and blog at www.helenshideler.com 

 

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