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Alida Ryan

North Slave
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Artist Story

My art is really not meant to stay inside the lines, and I like to describe it as perfectly imperfect. I’m a self-taught painter of landscapes, animals and abstract pieces. I love to work with bright, happy, colours to inspire people to smile. If I’m not using a spatula for the heavy body acrylic paints, I’ll use a large paint brush and leave marks on the background to create extra texture. I think that the style reflected by these types of strokes is what sets my paintings apart.

I’ve always been artistic growing up, whether it was painting, dancing or playing music. I painted sporadically and would usually give my artwork out as gifts. My family, career and social life always kept me busy. But in 2020 when everything slowed down, I had time to reconnect with my love of painting. I ended up making 71 paintings that year! The beauty of the North brought out my creative side. I love to go out for walks on crystal clear days to watch the pink and red northern sky. I take pictures and I use those images to inspire the colours in my paintings. I wouldn’t have painted like that if I were anywhere else.

Painting makes me feel like myself. It makes me feel happy with who I am, where I am and what space I’m in. Making art is a way for me to express myself and to utilize my brain. I love watching my paintings unfold. Witnessing how small details can transform the whole piece until I get to the end product is fascinating to me. Most of all, I hope my artwork makes other people smile. If someone looks at one of my paintings and feels joy, I feel like my work is done!

Artist Bio: 

Alida moved from Cold Lake, Alberta, to Yellowknife in 2019. Both her and her spouse are in the military and were excited to get to see the North for the first time while being posted in the same city. Along with being a self-taught painter, Alida is trained with the Canadian Dance Teachers Association in tap dancing and is versed in all types of dance including highland, jazz and ballet. She also plays guitar and percussions. Alida sells some of her paintings at Down to Earth gallery and has done commission pieces upon request. She hopes to one day be able to showcase her paintings in a gallery exhibit, a goal she is already actively working on.

Last Updated: March 23, 2021

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