When people walk into one north-end art gallery this month they will notice a handful of Chinese style paintings displayed on a wall.
All of the seven art pieces are highly detailed and feature birds or flowers and in some cases both.
The works were created by Nanaimo-based artist Christy Blom, who is this month’s featured artist at the Art 10 Gallery inside the Nanaimo North Town Centre.
“You see the paintings from far away and it is really beautiful, but when you look close you can see every detail,” Blom said.
Blom was born in Shandong, China, and grew up in the Southwestern city of Chengdu.
Although Blom never pursued art as a career in her younger years, she was always interested in art.
“It was always my passion,” Blom said. “I learned slowly here and there when I was in my 20s.”
Blom enrolled in art courses at the Sichuan University and later studied under respected Chinese artists Coral Chen and Hongbin Yu.
According to Blom, traditional Chinese art has two main techniques, Gong-bi or meticulous and Shui-mo or ink and wash painting, which is also known as freehand.
Blom practices the Gong-bi style, which involves the use of watercolours and the pieces are often very detailed.
“It is very different from the Western style [paintings] because we have to do the colours really thin,” Blom said. “I have to apply again and again and it takes lots of time.”
Blom’s pieces are created on rice paper and often feature birds and flowers, which she says inspire her to create art.
“I see all kinds of styles and they are really beautiful. Now being in B.C., I see lots of birds and I want to put local birds in my work.”
Blom moved from China to Canada in 1998 with her husband. In 2008, the couple moved to Nanaimo and in 2012, Blom became a member of the Art 10 Gallery.
The former Sichuan University student says since being a member of the gallery she has learned more about Western-style art and wants to blend the two styles together in her future pieces.
Blom hopes that people who look at her art to appreciate the Chinese art style.
“[I want people] to experience the Chinese culture and the Chinese art,” Blom said. “I do what I love and I hope people appreciate what is here.”
Blom’s work remains on display at the Art 10 Gallery until Aug. 30.
For more information, please visit www.myartclub.com.