Nanaimo’s Brenda Brown is the featured artists for March at Art 10 Gallery. (Greg Sakaki/News Bulletin)

Nanaimo’s Brenda Brown is the featured artists for March at Art 10 Gallery. (Greg Sakaki/News Bulletin)

Coastal journeys inspire Nanaimo painter

Brenda Brown’s ‘Journeys Along Coastal B.C.’ featured this month at Art 10 Gallery

A Nanaimo artist has lived and travelled up and down the Pacific coast, and the art inspired by her journeys is being exhibited this month at Art 10 Gallery.

Brenda Brown is the featured artist this month at the gallery at Nanaimo North Town Centre. She is presenting ‘Journeys Along Coastal B.C.,’ a collection of paintings, most of them new works, depicting perspectives of B.C.’s north coast, Vancouver Island and Haida Gwaii.

Brown has lived in Nanaimo for a few years, but before that she lived in the Prince Rupert area for 20 years.

“I’ve always been on the coast … and so the inspiration I draw from to paint comes from nature – the oceans, the coast, mountains [along] the coast,” she said. “There’s so much here. There’s so much beauty, there’s so much inspiration, there are so many places to explore.”

Brown loves painting water, she said, especially the ocean. It’s ever-changing, so whether she’s painting outside or taking a reference photo, she needs to be quick, before the light changes.

“If the water’s interesting, you’ve got to do that first because the trees’ shapes don’t change, but the light and the colours change,” she said.

She enjoys painting shallow water, when she’s painting not only the surface, but what’s underneath.

“You have layers and you do a base drawing first with your paint and then you put the colours over it,” she said. “You do your under-painting and then glaze over to show that depth.”

Brown said during the pandemic, she’s participated in online mentorship, has stayed active with the Nanaimo chapter of the Federation of Canadian Artists and has joined Art 10 Gallery, and all of those connections have helped shape her art. In preparing for her feature exhibit, she tried painting over a few older works, and it illustrated how far her art has come – “they’re not very recognizable,” she said.

WHAT’S ON … Brenda Brown’s ‘Journeys Along Coastal B.C.’ is being featured at Art 10 Gallery at Nanaimo North Town Centre until the end of March.

READ ALSO: Nanaimo chapter of Federation of Canadian Artists holding its Fine Art Show

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