Q & A with Patty Lynes

We love getting to know more about the artists we exhibit. Over the next few weeks we will offer a short Q & A with the artists from the Edge of the Forest exhibition; January 11 - February 10, 2024.

Take some time to read them. You will definitely learn something about the artist and yourself.



 Patty Lynes


At what point in your life did you realize that you wanted to pursue the arts?

In grade 9, I began a canoe trip into Algonquin Park with the Fir, Feather and Fin club! Canvas tents, canvas packs, aluminum canoes, drinking water directly out of the lakes, and cooking over the open fire. A lot has changed in regard to interior tripping, but I remember vividly feeling I wanted to be able to capture what I was experiencing through art. I still feel that being in the outdoors is a strong conduit for my creativity.


What must you do to get ready to begin in the studio? Or how do you get past the “blank page”?

I sketch or paint outdoors to get a feel for colour and light. In the studio, I seem to first need to clean up my space, to start a new work. Clear all the clutter and distraction. I use oil pastel or charcoal stick to make some marks on an oiled ground, or rub the ground in to shape the composition, wiping away areas.

I brush thin washes of dark, blending viridian and alizarin, or ultramarine and umber. Then I ghost in the white and judge my values.  That is the start of it.


What gets your creative juices flowing?

Thinking of places I have been, being in-situ and taking it in, visiting gallery’s, and drinking coffee!!


Describe your artistic style in three words.

Gestural, Loose, impressionistic


"Capilano Pacific Trail" Oil on Canvas 36" x 36"

How do you determine the size of your work?

The size and shape of the painting is determined by the subject.  For the ‘Edge of the Forest’, I painted large enough to capture the subject and detail, but not too large that I couldn’t cart it around the forest to paint outdoors. Smaller size works are chosen for plein air when I’m capturing changing light or have more challenging access issues such as canoe tripping.


Square vs. Rectangle. What’s your preference and why?

The format I choose depends on the subject. I do not have a particular preference and use both formats. Tall rectangular format for vertical subject like trees, where the movement is up toward the sky for example. Square format for a window to a view.


There are a lot of you put in these artworks. How do you practice gratitude for what you get to do?

When I am outdoors all day painting, I am grateful for this experience.  When I wake up thinking about painting, spend time painting, have my health, a supportive community and great studio I feel grateful. I feel I am giving of my self when I paint, and the strength it gives me is also something I can share. 


Do you have any phrases or words written in your studio? What are they and why are they there?

I have poems in my studio written by a colleague at the Cotton Factory, Lance Darren Cole. He is an inspiration as he writes from the heart.


What would people be surprised to learn about you?

Many things about ourselves we keep deep down, locked away. And painting helps me keep them there.


What drink & food do you think is best to consume while viewing your artwork?

Well, this is an interesting question. If I were in a restaurant, cafe or home, artwork would create an atmosphere to complement the occasion. If I were looking at art I would not want the distraction of drink or food. Contemplation and appreciation without distraction.

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