All Memory’s life she has been creative and artistic, but she never pursued art, her interests since she was young, were sewing and photography, so when art entered her life, it was a surprise, and a gift. It has changed her life in ways she would never had anticipated.
In September of 2006, on a whim, Memory joined a good friend for an art class. They had talked about taking a class together but had not decided on what. When her friend told her that she was taking a class that very night, Memory didn't really care what it was and she signed up that day for the class, it turned out that the class was how to paint realism in oil. To her surprise she fell in love with painting. She continued her weekly class for two years at Hidden Talent Art Studio in St. Albert, AB with instructor and artist Laura Watmough.
Things quickly took off for Memory. She stayed at the studio until January of 2009, just after she won an award in the International Gamblin Torrit Grey contest; the first contest she entered. To her surprise her painting that won the award “Boats at Portsoy” was published in the 2009 “American Artist” magazine.
After Memory left the studio, she continued painting on her own and with a few friends from time to time. Things were continuing to go well, she continued to win awards for her work and had many of her paintings published in newspapers, but she felt the need to strengthen her drawing skills. She took some classes at Artra Art School in Edmonton, AB; a couple classes with Susanne Lamoureux, and a three month drawing class with Frank Haddock.
Memory was excited about this new found passion, and as her career as an artist was starting to gain momentum tragedy unexpectedly struck her family. In early 2012 her husband became terminally ill. Putting everything aside, she took care of her husband until he passed away that August.
Not quite sure if she would be able to carry on with her art, but knowing her husband was her biggest supporter she knew that if she gave it up she would be doing both him and herself a disservice. As she was struggling with the motivation to return to her painting, Memory and her children went to Hawaii with family in November. While snorkeling on their last day on the island, Memory and her daughter had the most profound experience swimming with a turtle. It wasn't until January of 2013 that she was able to pick up the paint brush once again, but it was the turtle that gave her the inspiration she needed; it felt to her like her husband had sent the turtle to tell her to get back to the easel.
Having found a renewed strength and motivation, Memory decided that in order to keep it going she would have to challenge herself and set herself up to start showing her work once again. An opportunity presented itself when Phil Alain, founder and producer of the Night of Artists put a call out. This seemed like a wonderful opportunity and Memory submitted her art for consideration. She has belonged to the group since 2013 and continues to find inspiration, motivation and joy from her fellow professional artists.
Portraits were Memory’s first love, especially those of children. Being an avid gardener, flowers are also one of her favourite subjects. In 2015, she painted her every growing series “Flower Power”, a series of large floral paintings. “Flower Power” was featured at Memory’s first juried solo show in the brand-new Alcove Gallery at the Northern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium in Edmonton Alberta, the 3-month show was then moved to the Southern Alberta Jubilee in Calgary, AB for an additional month.
As time has moved forward Memory’s subject matter remains diverse and several other series have been emerging including, "St. Albert", "The Polar Bear", "Alberta", and “Flower Power Mini’s”. The St. Albert Series is the largest so far and one of the most popular. Her first painting in the series, “Sturgeon Crossings” won the cover of the St. Albert Historical Society’s hard cover book “A Bridge over Time: the continuing story of St. Albert”. “The Trestle” was featured as a cover for the City of St. Albert’s Partners in the Park thank you card. Reproductions of her series can be purchased in a number of local businesses in St. Albert, and the series continues to grow.
Memory is a realism painter, she prefers working in oil and paints in a method similar to the old masters. Each painting takes many hours to complete, starting with a monochromatic under painting; once she is satisfied with the result, she will add the colour. Layer upon layer of colour is glazed onto the monochromatic, bringing the painting to life.
Memory’s family is her life and art her passion. Going through all that she has gone through to get to this place, this moment, has given her a huge appreciation for the gifts and the strength that God has given her. As Memory moves forward in her career as a professional artist, she is truly grateful for all the awards and accolades, for the support of her children, friends and family, the people who follow her on social media, for those who have purchased her art and for the guidance that God gives her.
One of the greatest lessons Memory has learned from this journey so far, is that even in the darkest of days there is purpose and reason. You only have to look to the light, listen, believe, have faith and do the work.