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Artist and teacher brings passion to new gallery exhibition

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Cathy Dobson

Sarnia artist Cathy Earle doesn’t hesitate to divulge the secret to her vibrant watercolours.

In fact, she wants to share her knowledge as much as possible and loves to teach.

“I use three colours to do every painting,” she says, holding up tubes of red, yellow and blue. “I mix everything from these.”

Earle paints prolifically and teaches at her kitchen table, where natural light streams in front windows and her interior decorating skills show off her eye for colour.

“My first love is painting,” says Earle.  “But I also want to be an illustrator, a teacher and an interior designer.”

It wasn’t until she left her job with Canada Post a few months ago that Earle was able to pursue art full-time.

“I retired in 2017 and began painting every day,” she said.  “I knew I’d only get better if I painted every day, so I challenged myself to do it.”

She completes about one painting a week and that production rate has fueled a number of art exhibits, including “Passion” showing at Artopia Gallery and Framing at 188 Christina St.

Earle is known for floral designs, waterscapes and landscapes.  But “Passion” is different because she’s incorporated portraits for the first time.

Many of the show’s 15 watercolours contain Japanese geishas with delicate features and perfect complexions framed by cherry blossoms or birds.

Earle’s work is priced from $350 to $900 at Artopia.

“Passion” is a pop-up exhibition that’s only on this week.  It started Monday, April 30 with an opening reception with the artist on Thursday, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Earle will also be present on First Friday.  The exhibition closes Saturday.

Her work can also be seen this month at The Refined Fool on Davis Street.

Earle grew up in Corunna and has painted since high school.  She studied art fundamentals at Lambton College, learned illustration at Sheridan, and earned a fine arts degree at the Ontario College of Art in Toronto.

“The lovely thing about painting is that you can sit down and get lost in it,” she said. “It’s very relaxing.”

She has taught at the college but now offers classes at The Lawrence House Centre for the Arts. This summer she’s teaching outside, meeting students at different locations for three hours a day, and working on composition, mixing colours, doing thumbnail sketches and more.

For more about Cathy Earle’s work and her classes, visit www.cathyearle.com or her Facebook page at cathyearlepurecolourart.

The Arts Journal is a reflection of Sarnia’s rich cultural life.  Contact cathy.dobson@thesarniajournal with your ideas.



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