Dan Ostler’s Morning in the Bay is one of the paintings on display in November as part of his feature show. Vancouver Island provides inspiration for the artist.

Island provides inspiration for artist

Vancouver Island’s landscape provided the inspiration for Dan Ostler to take up painting

Vancouver Island’s landscape provided the inspiration for Dan Ostler to take up painting.

Ostler grew up in Northern Ontario, but came to Vancouver Island while serving with the Canadian military in the mid-1980s and has been a resident of various Island communities ever since.

As a lifetime hobby photographer, Ostler was immediately captivated by the vibrancy of the Island landscape.

He began painting on a spur-of-the-moment whim one day in 1998, with virtually no formal training or art education. He now pursues painting on an almost full time basis from his studio in Ladysmith.

“I recall very vividly, throughout my life, being fascinated  by certain  images,” Ostler said. “Brilliant photographs, flawlessly executed drawings, or beautiful paintings have always captivated my imagination and stirred my emotions.”

It may be a striking contrast of tones or colours that does it, or the awakening of curiosity, the suggestion of a story untold, or it might be simply the sense of familiarity when Ostler sees an image.

“I’ve always admired the ability of artists who could create such compelling pictures,” he said. “So, I suppose it was inevitable, after the busy-ness of a career had come to an end, that I would become afflicted with the pursuit of this elusive gift.”

Watercolour became his media of choice purely by chance when he picked up a small tray in the kid’s section of a hardware store, just on a whim, to take home and dabble with.

Watercolour remains his primary focus and first love, Ostler also paints in acrylic.

His show runs throughout November, with an opening reception set for Thursday (Nov. 10), 3-5 p.m.

For more information, please call 250-754-1750.

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