Donna Petersen in the art room of her home in 100 Mile House Beth Audet photo.

Donna Petersen’s favourite paintings will be featured in the Showcase gallery in October

‘Art is such a personal thing, everybody has their own likes and dislikes’

The work of 100 Mile House artist Donna Petersen will be featured in the Showcase gallery in October.

Petersen’s paintings have been included in some of the Cariboo Artist’s Guild displays, but this is her first solo show.

“Yeah, it’s kind of cool, I guess, to be asked to do it,” she said with a sheepish grin. “My grandson’s impressed.”

When gallery manager Leslie Ginther asked her to display her art, Petersen said she replied, “Uh, are you sure?”

“There’s so many excellent artists in this area … and the quality of art is just incredible.”

There’s no particular theme to Petersen’s show. She’s chosen a collection of 15 of her favourite paintings to display, four of which are new.

There are watercolours and oil paintings, but most recently, she’s worked exclusively with pastels.

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“When you get old, your hands shake and your eyes sight’s not as good as it was … I can’t do as delicate as stuff as I used to do before,” she said. “The pastels are easier for me.”

Aside from their ease in application, she said she likes pastels because, “they kind of sparkle.”

Petersen has been painting her entire life. She played with watercolours as a kid and then got her first oil paints when she was a teenager.

She said she’s been honing her skills now that she is semi-retired and has a lot more time to paint.

Belonging to the Cariboo Artists’ Guild has also helped to push her outside of her comfort as an artist, she said.

When asked what inspires her paintings, she said she’s not entirely sure.

“You know, I get asked that a lot.” The lighting or the life captured in a photograph sometimes strikes her, she said, but her pieces are all so different that it’s hard to pinpoint one consistent inspiration.

“I don’t know, I really can’t come up with what inspires me.”

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When asked what she would like people to experience when they see her display, she said she’d love for them to be able to connect with at least one piece.

“Art is such a personal thing, everybody has their own likes and dislikes and, you know, just because I like it doesn’t mean to say it’s going to appeal to everybody.”

She said a husband of a fellow Cariboo Artists’ Guild member loved one of her paintings that was in the recent Show & Sale at the Parkside gallery.

It was of a dog walking beside somebody riding a horse.

She said that positive feedback made her feel great.

Petersen is getting her art ready to be displayed for Wednesday, Oct. 3. She still has to write small descriptions of each chosen painting, something she is admittedly struggling with.

“I’m a terrible procrastinator,” she said.

“I’ve got a frame for it to go in and everything, but like I don’t have a single word written down on paper. That’s the hardest part of the whole thing,” she laughed. “And the second hardest part is the fricking interview.”

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