Springtime, Where are you?

Love Grows Best – 18″x24″ Oil by Cheryl Peddie

I am so sick of brown and bare trees. Unfortunately, I’m finding nothing inspiring about the drab greys, browns and cold winds outside. And the kicker is that without any leaves on the trees, the city noise is inescapable at my house.

Staying creative is tough when our environment doesn’t cooperate. It can drag at our moods, pulling us down into long days of low productivity. It’s a challenge to resist the pull, but it’s also a necessity. Not just because there are still shows to prepare for, or client deadlines to meet. I used to rely on those kinds of pressures to – well, bully myself into productivity. I think there’s a better way though. And frankly, there needs to be. Those hard-hearted tactics never work for long. Once the inevitable post-deadline crash comes, you’re sucked down into low productivity again – from sheer exhaustion.

So, I know what doesn’t work. What does work? For me, the answer is still a work in progress. Lately I’ve been scheduling sketches – no bigger than 5″ square – into my mornings. I’m doing them to give my creativity a chance to wake up for the day. Fortunately I love painting on small canvasses. It’s a skill I stumbled into early in my career. It’s a very peaceful, gentle way to start the day. And once I’m finished I’m better able to begin tackling a large commission, or sorting out some tricky perspective in a larger work that is ongoing. If you’d like to see and/or purchase some of my morning sketches, I’ve created a new page here on my website where you can do just that. Have a look at: cherylpeddie.ca/cheryls-art-shop/

I’d love to hear from other artists – what tricks do you use to keep you productive in studio?

Thanks for stopping by,

The ‘Sunnyside’ of the Street – Artist Opening coming up

SunnysideShow-FoFMy newest solo show, The ‘Sunnyside’ of the Street’ is coming quickly. Please join me at my artist opening on Thurs Dec 3, from 6-9pm at Framed on Fifth, 1207 – 5 Ave NW in Calgary.

I’ll be featuring a new collection of paintings from the neighborhood of Sunnyside and Hillhurst at the show. I am  inspired by these heritage neighborhoods in our city. Their smaller yet lovingly cared for homes and gardens speak to me of the importance of simplicity and moderation. A time when we had front porch verandahs – because visiting with neighbors meant more than how many square feet our homes measured. Double car driveways and garages weren’t considered a necessity because we could walk most places we needed to go.

So join me for a little nostalgia, some penny candy, a cool beverage and some socializing. I’d love to see you and get caught up before the holiday season swings into gear. Thanks for stopping by; hope to see you on Dec 3. Best, Cheryl.

The Air is Getting Chilly…

I do love the way the air feels this time of year. Winter’s coming. This is ‘Early Frost’ – 16″x20″ oil on canvas. I painted this from a reference I took while flying past the scene in my friend’s car; we were on our way to an art show – thus the hurry! North and west of Cochrane, AB. This painting is currently being shown at the Bow Valley Rance Restaurant, in Fish Creek, Calgary. Thank you so much to The Ranche at Fish Creek Restoration Society, for inviting me to show my work. I appreciate being a part of this important landmark in Calgary’s artistic culture and history.Early Frost – 16"x20"

New Art Class for Fall

Evening Mist – 12″x16″ oil on canvas by Cheryl Peddie

I’m delighted to be adding a third weekly class to my teaching schedule. The new class will be at the Glamorgan Community Centre on Monday mornings from 9am-12pm. The facility is gorgeous, with natural light coming from large windows all around. It has a separate entrance on the main floor, right off the parking lot – super easy for toting in our painting gear.

Here’s the rundown on my classes, for those of you who are just exploring the idea of beginning your art practice:

I love to paint and teach a wide variety of subject matter – landscape, still life, interiors, wildlife, florals; even figures and street scenes!

I work with beginners up to intermediates, so I keep my classes small – 8 students maximum. This allows me enough time to work one-on-one with each student, as well as a great size for group discussions and getting to know your fellow student artists.

I take a comprehensive approach to teaching art – helping students learn fundamentals of drawing while learning to paint. We will also focus on color theory including value, temperature, saturation, plus contrast, edges and design. I also do demonstrations in class to help illustrate the concepts students will be learning. Finally, we’ll work together to help you find a style you love, and build confidence in yourself as an artist.

Workstations are roomy and bright with a table supplied for each student. (See pictures below.) Students do need to bring their own art supplies and a table easel. I have an art supply list prepared, and can recommend some excellent art supply stores in Calgary.

Please contact me as soon as possible to book your space. Fees are $35/class ($140/month based on 4 classes). I take cheques, cash, Visa & MasterCard. Your first month’s fees are required to hold your space.

This is a brand new class so I do need a minimum number of students to start classes. I can be reached any time at cherylpeddie@shaw.ca. Business line: 403-201-6532.

Glamorgan Community Hall Classroom – image 2
Glamorgan Community Hall Classroom
Glamorgan Community Hall Classroom
Glamorgan Community Hall Classroom

Road Trip 2015 – Have Easel, Will Travel

Painting by Cheryl Peddie
Best Seats in the House – 16″x20″ Oil by Cheryl Peddie

I’m excited to share my newest project, ‘Road Trip 2015’, with you today. This year, I’m visiting and painting on location at 9 communities throughout Alberta, Saskatchewan and BC. The purpose? To explore the concept of creating meaning.

Meaning-making has a fluid, interconnected nature that fascinates me. A quote I found on my sister’s website – leewardclips.wordpress.comspeaks to this: “When you change the way you look at something; what you look at changes.” Deepak Chopra. And I’d add to that: when what you look at changes, it can further change the way you look at it… and so on. It’s never-ending and ever-changing. Love that.

I began this journey last month with visits to Vulcan, AB and Eastend, SK. The biggest insight I came away from these two trips was: Finding and sharing what has meaning to you, helps create meaning for others.

Vulcan, Alberta
In Vulcan, I was invited to teach a workshop on Streetscapes to the ‘Nine in a Line’ Creative Art Society. Their studio (the Vulcan Art Studio) is located in the gorgeous Healy Heritage Art Center. The center is also home to Caelo, a haven of mouth-watering baking and home cooking owned and run by Kellie & Terry Hartle. (My painting above, ‘Best Seats in the House’ are of a cozy spot in Caelo.) Kellie has made Caelo a special gathering place. Her interior design skill has touched every corner; there are even ‘reader’ glasses of various strengths artfully placed for patrons to enjoy, so they can read while enjoying their meal. And at the end of my visit, Kellie packed up a date bar and banana loaf for my travels. I tried to make them last. But they were so heavenly, I gobbled both down in record time. After that luscious first bite, they didn’t stand a chance. Thank you Kellie! I can’t wait to visit again.

Eastend, SK
In Eastend, I was joined by fellow artist and Gallerist, Arlene Westen Evans. Arlene owns Evanescence Gallery in High River. We laughed, talked and painted for an entire week at the historic ‘Eaton’s House’.  Eaton’s homes, were mail-ordered through the Eaton’s catalogue – piece by piece! Then they were built on the owner’s site. This particular one, is one of the last remaining in Alberta, and is now a guesthouse. Located at the Riverside Motel, it is run by Ed and Wendy Sanford. Ed and fellow Eastend resident, Steve Garamzeghy renovated it into a stunning character home. It was an artists’ dream to paint and stay at. On rainy days, I painted many interiors of the space. Below are two of my paintings from this trip:

'Catalogue Special' 6"x6" oil by Cheryl Peddie - SOLD
‘Catalogue Special’ 6″x6″ oil by Cheryl Peddie – SOLD
Jack's Cafe
Nacho Jacks – 6″x8″ oil by Cheryl Peddie

Next Up

I’ll be painting lots more from all my trips throughout the coming year. I’ve also submitted the project for consideration as an exhibition to one gallery, and possibly more as I continue.

For the upcoming month, I’m planning two more trips. I’m off to Jasper, then to Blairmore. I’ll be posting what I learn and paint during those trips, in a month or so. Hope to see you back again. Take care, Cheryl.


I’ve grown more fascinated with creating street scenes this year. I love the variety and complexity of shapes, values, colors I can paint in them. Because of this, it’s almost like putting together a puzzle. I shift between long hours working at it, and periods where I need to just hang it on the wall and take a break from looking at it. Each time I return to it I can suddenly ‘see’ how to resolve little challenges and areas that I’d previously been unable to master. Please visit my ‘Urban & Rural Street Scenes’ page in my portfolio to view more of my new work in this genre: http://cherylpeddie.ca/portfolio/urban-rural-street-scenes/

Evening Ride


Evening Ride, 50″x32″, Oil on Canvas

I was honoured to be commissioned by the Rocky View Foundation, to create this painting for their Crossfield Seniors’ Lodge. I felt it would be fitting to create a piece that reflected some of the resident’s western heritage. I photographed the reference for ‘Evening Ride’ while driving along Highway 22X near Priddis. As soon as I saw the horses and riders, I hit the brakes, looking for somewhere to pull over and capture the scene. As an artist, I am accustomed to every ride in the country taking twice as long as normal. There are too many perfect moments to miss. 

Join me in Jasper

Original Joe's – Oil by Cheryl Peddie – SOLD
Original Joe’s – Oil by Cheryl Peddie – SOLD


Street Scenes in Acrylics
Sat June 27 – 10:00am-4:00pm
Jasper AB – Hosted by the Jasper Community Habitat for the Arts
Location TBA
Class Fee: $100 – Includes brunch!!

Streetscapes are often a subject matter that art students avoid. It’s a shame, because they allow artists to use a wide range of color not often seen in more natural environments like landscapes. They also help us learn to see value changes easier because of the strong geometric shapes and harder edges than in landscapes. In this one-day workshop, I’ll help you learn to simplify all that you see, and create a fun, urban scene in acrylics. Please also join me as I paint the street scenes of Jasper, plein air, on Thurs June 25 & Fri June 26, noon – 3pm each day! I’ll be discussing my work and answering questions from viewers as I paint. Artists are welcome to join me as I paint. Locations will be announced on my facebook page: www.facebook.com/CherylPeddieArtwork

A Fresh Start for a Brand New Year

Little House on the Prairie – 16"x16" oil by Cheryl Peddie - SOLD
Little House on the Prairie – 16″x16″ oil by Cheryl Peddie – SOLD

So much has happened in the past month, it’s been a wonderful whirl. My December art show ‘Prairie Girl’ at Evanescence Gallery in High River, AB, was a huge hit with nearly 70 art fans in attendance. My fall workshops were all sold-out. And I was invited to participate in a new gallery’s small works show. Thanks to Midtowne Gallery in Calgary for welcoming my work!

For January, the changes just keep rolling in. I were surprised to find out I needed to find a new studio space for my Calgary classes. We’ll sure miss the old space, old friends & colleagues, but will be certain to keep in touch. And today, I found a great new ‘painting home away from home’ that I’ll begin teaching from on Thurs Jan 15. Introducing our new bright & spacious studio at Windsor Park Community Hall!

Grounds-frontentrance Grounds-1 Studio1Studio2Located just north of Chinook Mall on 53 Ave SW, the hall has easy proximity from downtown and all quadrants of the city. What a lovely facility, and I’m very honored to have been welcomed into the new space. The huge bonus for me, is that the hall is right on a beautiful park space and is surrounded by charming community streets, beautiful mature trees and nature at it’s finest! What an inspiring space in which we’ll be able to paint and learn! Hop over to my Weekly Classes page for dates and details.

I also have more workshops coming up in Cochrane and High River! Please visit my Workshops page to get class descriptions and registration info. Thanks so much for reading, and I hope we’ll have the chance to paint together soon!


‘Prairie Girl’ Artist’s Reception

Please join me on Fri Dec 12 from 6:30 – 9:30pm for the artist’s reception of my very first solo show – ‘Prairie Girl’. The show will be at the lovely Evanescencey Gallery and Art Studio in High River Alberta. It’s just a quick drive from the south end of Calgary and well worth the visit. You’ll find the gallery at 61 – 8 Ave SE, High River. Look for their dark blue awnings.

This show features my newest work painting the prairie in oils. The paintings will be predominantly landscapes, with a focus on the prairie & rolling foothills. I’ll also have a selection of my small street scenes. After all, lots of us who live on the prairie still live in town, or even in ‘the big city’, including me! Community life is a big part of living under the prairie sky, even if you call an acreage, farm or ranch ‘home’.

I’ve been working with the idea lately of having quiet spaces in my work, areas where the eye can rest. I still love to create artwork that is busier in theme and composition. However, these are more about the movement of light, air through the piece, and the restfulness of mind and spirit.

Gallery owner Arlene Westen Evans has curated a beautiful selection of fine art including paintings, fibre art, mixed media, pottery, jewelry and other fine pieces for your collection or for gifting. For more information please call me at 403-201-6532, or the gallery at 403-652-2512. www.evanescencegallery.com.