For this month, the Winnipeg River Arts Council features visual artist Linda Bourrier. Two years ago, she was living and working in Calgary, as an executive assistant at a large oil company. After retiring, she moved to Pine Falls, where her husband had family.
When she was around ten, she watched a neighborhood girl sketching clothes models. This experience inspired her passion for art and it remained a favourite subject throughout her school years. In grade twelve, she won the art award and her love for creativity deepened.
Later in life, while busy working and raising three children, she treated herself to evening and weekend workshops, starting with beginner watercolor classes at North Mount Pleasant Arts Centre in Calgary, then sessions in various artists’ studios, including Nancy-Lynne Hughes, Karin Richter, and a weekend workshop with Gordon MacKenzie from Ontario. While living in Pine Falls, she’s taken workshops with local artist Roberta Laliberte. She hopes to learn more from Laliberte and other artists in the area.
Bourrier said, “I’m absolutely hungry to learn new techniques.”
In her adult life, she prefers to depict flowers. Although watercolor painting is her first and favorite medium, she’s dabbled with acrylics and wants to learn more. A while ago, she tried making 3-D stained glass creations. Mixed media sparks a lot of interest, as well as cartoon type characters. She has also experimented with resin on glass, simple mobiles, copic markers, watercolor pens, and various children’s crafts. Right now, her special passion is creating homemade personal cards.
She said, “I like a more realistic style, rather than abstract. And I look at objects and scenery with ‘watercolor eyes.’ Colors also play a big part in stimulating me.”
Bourrier admits she hasn’t settled on a single art practice or medium but hopes, in her retirement, to focus on one and get better at it. She has not exhibited any of her work, but thinks she might like to, at some point. But she enjoys sharing her talents with children in her church and with interested friends. She also likes the fun of “art dates” with fellow artists, such as the River Crawlers Sketch Club, organized by Leah Boulet from St-Georges.
Bourrier said, “While doing art, I’m in my ‘happy place.’ It shuts out the rest of the world and any worries.”