– Story by Maggie Jackson Photography by Don Denton
Kathryn Fudge has been making her own clothes, cooking, drawing, painting and other creative activities since she was 10 years old. Her creativity blossomed into an earlier career as a seamstress.
It also came in handy when she helped her husband with renovations on their family home.
From the mid-1990s until 2006 she worked in a studio and taught classes in tole painting. In early 2008 she learned about a class in Paverpol.
“I signed up, took the class, loved it and called the instructor and asked what was next. It was the instructors course, so I did that and ran with it,” Fudge said. “I’ve never been one for colouring inside the lines and with Paverpol I really had to let go. I had to learn how to work with it and not control it. I love Paverpol because it’s non-toxic, environmentally friendly and easy to work with. Plus it air dries and it’s soap and water cleanup.”
Paverpol is a liquid polymer used as a textile hardener and can be used as a mixed media medium. It works with natural materials like, cotton, silk, linen, wool, hemp, and wood.
Paverpol requires natural material so it can be absorbed into the fibres. Fudge asks her students to bring upcycled 100% cotton T-shirts to her classes, so they too can create fun sculptures.
The front, back and side yard of the Fudge home have strategically placed Paverpol creations scattered throughout. “Mostly I create sculptures of women,” she said. “But I do have a 7’ giraffe and a few fairies.”
“Creating art is so ingrained in me,” Fudge said. “Some people go to the beach to relax and unwind. I can spend a day in my studio creating and time stops. It’s so fulfilling and satisfying, and I come out rejuvenated.
I go downstairs, start working on something and before I know it – it’s dark out!”
When it comes to the Coast Collective, she loves how it brings art and community together. “We do a kids’ show and a student art’s show every year. It’s really important to have art in the community, in your life, in your house, in your yard. It all starts with the kids, if you don’t expose them to it early on, they don’t do it. But it’s easy to get them involved.”
Her dream is to have an arts centre on the West Shore. “I’ve lived on Vancouver Island since 1992 and in Colwood since 1995. The arts scene on the West Shore needs serious support from the councils and the communities in general. I would love to see an arts centre on the West Shore, with a performing arts theatre and an art gallery and a centre like what we have at the Coast Collective.”