What makes your studio environment linked to the land which you depict?
I have a big window in my second-floor studio, so I can see the tops of all the trees in my backyard and I routinely stop and look at them. I also have many works of art on my walls, from my late father’s paintings of forests to photos I’ve cut out of art magazines of artists work I admire. I find they’re a great source of inspiration for me.
Where is your go to site for inspiration? Why do you NEED to paint it?
I have two go-to sites for inspiration. Haliburton, for its beautiful mossy rocks and every species of tree. I’m obsessed with the amazing colour combinations and textures I find there. Also, my family has lived on a large wooded property in Simcoe county for over 50 years so my connection to the land there goes back to my childhood. The light and colour in the forest is so beautiful, I just have to paint it.
When scouting for inspiration, what sounds resonate with you until you get to the easel?
I have to say, the sound of my footsteps crunching on the forest floor as I walk among the trees makes me feel like I’m a part of the forest. I definitely bring that back to the studio with me. Also, the sound of the wind blowing through the trees. That sound of fluttering leaves. I love that.
"Resplendent" 30" x 40" Oil on Panel
When creating in the studio, what music do you listen to? Is it always the same?
I listen to quite an eclectic mix of music. From Oscar Peterson to Eagles to rapper Eminem. I like pretty much everything. Except Jazz…sorry Jazz lovers. I like to start my day with a favorite album or artist and let things roll from there.
Go to song to start the day?
Don’t really have one but I do like to start my day with music that pumps me up and gets me excited. If I had to pick one, Imagine Dragons “Whatever it Takes” would be a definite favorite and Melissa Etheridge, “Bring Me Some Water.” They both get me pumped for a good paint day.
Do you have any phrases or words written in your studio? What are they and why are they there?
Yes!! I have quite a few. They all inspire me but this one by Mark Twain, actually got me to take up oil painting 18 years ago. “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do.” And another is, “Painting is easy when you don’t know how, but very difficult when you do” Edgar Degas. So true and it makes me feel better that Degas found it hard too!
Wendy Bermingham grew up in the small town of Aurora Ontario. She fulfilled her lifelong dream of becoming an artist when she graduated from the Ontario College of Art and Design in 1985 with a major in Communication and Design and was the recipient of the prestigious Southham Scholarship for Excellence. Moving to Toronto, Wendy enjoyed working as a freelance assembly artist for a short time but later developed a successful career at MCG Graphics, a close knit, in-house studio of Ogilvy and Mather Advertising. She art directed and designed for accounts such as Canadian Pacific and Minera Mines.
Years later, after spending time getting back to her roots in nature, she discovered that fine art was her true calling. Primarily self-taught, Wendy now paints full time in her studio or
outside painting plein air and has never looked back. Wendy has traveled throughout Ontario, Europe and USA to paint, but it is the Canadian landscape where her true passion lies. Painting exclusively in oil, Wendy uses both brush and palette knife, utilizing their unique marks to create the texture, and movement found in her colourful paintings. Wendy considers her artistic evolution as an ever-changing, unending journey.
Wendy is an elected member of the Ontario Society of Artists and the Society of Canadian Artists and a member of the East Central Ontario Art Association. Her work can be found in private collections throughout Canada and the United States.
"Be Still my Heart" 18" x 36" Oil on Panel