Colleen first picked up a paint brush at a time when she was battling chronic migraine headaches. Thinking that learning to paint would help to relieve some of the stress that was causing some of the problem, she started watercolour lessons with a neighbour who had been painting for quite some time. This was at the same time she helped run a hobby farm with her husband, who was recuperating from an industrial accident. She also was the prime care-giver for her blind father-in-law, so her stress level was through the roof.
Painting didn’t relieve her stress, it just added another one to it: a better one. It was an escape of a sort and she embraced it full on! After painting for six months with the neighbour, she decided to go out on her own, setting up her own still lifes, and enrolling in a Two-Year Fundamentals of Fine Art course by correspondence. She received an Honours Certificate in the course and moved on from there.
She was fortunate to have two mentors who taught her very well, instructing her in the direction she wanted to go in and turning her away from areas that would not be beneficial to her. She also availed herself of many workshops held by well-known artists and studied on her own as well. By this time she had changed her medium of choice to acrylics.
Time went on and she was able to join several art organizations, both virtual and online, applying to their many shows. She enjoys the competition of juried shows and has added to her credentials in this way. Her artistic endeavours proved a God-send as she went through two battles with cancer. She was able to push through those difficult days with a brush in one hand and a treatment schedule in the other, finding those days challenging but also fulfilling as painting soothed her soul.
Her medium changed again after a four week workshop in oils with a local artist. She has never looked back. Going from Still Life and Florals on to Landscapes, Seascapes, and now adding Figurative work into the mix, keeps her on her toes and well-motivated. Now teaching several classes of her own, she has a newsletter, a website, heads up a local art group, is an art mentor, art show juror, and has enrolled in an online marketing course.
Several trips to the west coast and an extended stay in Central America allowed her to add to her painting reference files and gave her the encouragement to try painting people living their everyday lives.
Ever busy, she is constantly trying to carve out more hours in the day to get more accomplished. But, she always has time for that quick phone call, email to a friend, and has given her the opportunity to get more involved with her local art organization.
Colleen J Dyson AFCA SCA
What people are saying about my work!
“Great work, Colleen, now with South American content and a broad range of works interconnecting with nature, you are now including cultural concepts in your work. The colours are soft with an essence of quiet nature, away from the human element, where it’s all alive in its own environment. Keep painting and exploring new avenues in your future works.”
Dene Tribal Artist
"My gosh, you are doing fantastic painting people - can’t believe how great they look!!!"
"You are such an inspiration!"
This is a full-page write up of my solo show in Osoyoos, by Richard McGuire of the Osoyoos Times. I was very impressed with how he went about taking photos and, more importantly, the interview itself.
Photos of my work during the show. They looked very good on the gallery walls. The blue wall was painted specially to showcase my Costa Rica paintings and was complimented on by several of the folks who were enjoying the show.