One in a series of articles profiling local artists, in the run-up to the Ashcroft Art Club’s 50th anniversary show. It runs from April 21 to April 25, 2017 at St. Alban’s Anglican Church Hall.
“I’ve pretty well been painting and drawing all my live,” says Valerie Marie Keller, who has been a member of the Art Club since moving to Ashcroft from Mackenzie four years ago. “I joined because I wanted to meet new people after moving.”
Although she has worked in various mediums, she uses mostly acrylics now. Her paintings cover a wide range of subjects, from landscapes to people. One of her favourite subjects is the South Thompson River near the family home in Chase.
“I paint a variety of things,” says Keller, “but I like landscapes particularly.” She often works from photographs she has taken over the years. “They’re places I’ve been in my time, places I know and like.”
This year marks Keller’s third appearance at the art show, with five paintings entered. While they are pretty much complete, she agrees that it can sometimes be difficult for artists to know when a work is finished, and resist the temptation to keep working on it.
The club meets twice a month for group painting sessions, and Keller says she tries to go to the classes as often as possible.
“It’s a social opportunity, as well as a learning one; a little bit of both. And sometimes there are workshops, with an artist present or by video. I haven’t done too many yet, but there’s a good atmosphere down there.”
A painting Keller did of family members at the family home on the South Thompson River.