On a bet and a dare is how our next feature artist for In the Artist’s Studio describes the beginnings of her love affair with painting. Marg can be found in her studio creating art for at least a part of every day.
Marg Smith of Lavender Art Studio in Okotoks has been creating her wonderful works for about 13 years and in that time she has taken her art from zero to wow and has moved from student to teacher. Although all artists readily accept that they are never really finished being students.
In her lovely light filled studio – Marg has converted the major portion of the lower level of her “walk-out” home into a wonderful studio/gallery - is where you can find her painting or teaching most every day.
The subjects Marg gravitates to range from landscapes and nature to children and critters and they all reflect her love of light and colour.
While she is a very busy artist, Marg also finds time for volunteer work with the Foothills Country Hospice where she shares her talents as both a teacher and an artist. She is a founding member of the Brushed With Flair group who host a major fund raising effort on behalf of the hospice each spring. Known as Art with Heart be sure to look for it this April.
Marg is not just busy as an active artist and community volunteer she is also a member of a number of professional associations and organizations. The list is long and impressive. Among others it contains the Federation of Canadian Artists, Visual Art Society of Alberta and Alberta Society of Artists. How does she find time to attend High River Art Society meetings – I don’t know but I am glad she does!
As a teacher, Marg encourages her beginner students to “get lost in the domain of colour and fun”. Her philosophy carries over into her own creations as they abound with colour and light.
In addition to private and group lessons, Marg has recently begun welcoming groups into her studio for an evening of goodies and refreshments while sharing with them the fun of creating art in a social setting. When all is done the participants get to take their new creations home to be proudly displayed and fondly remembered.
Although Marg is largely self-taught, her art style has been influenced by some notable instructors, such as: Andrew Kiss, Roger Arndt, Murray Phillips and Doug Swinton. She has worked in watercolours and acrylics but now finds she prefers to work mainly in oils.
While visiting her studio I did notice that Marg continues to develop her craft by experimenting with new materials and styles. I will be interested to keep an eye on her new work as she grows and develops her style.
In addition to creating art, Marg actively promotes and sells her work. Through her website at www.artsmithsstudio.com, by appointment at her studio/gallery or at numerous shows, works by M.L. Smith can be found and enjoyed. She is currently displaying a number of pieces at Highwood Art in High River, Okotoks Art Gallery, Elevation Art Gallery in Canmore and the Leighton Art Centre. Marg’s art has been juried into an impressive list of shows over her career and has found a home in corporate and private collections on both sides of the Atlantic.