Hext adds colour to the outdoors

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Tammy Hext loves bold colours and the outdoors.
The Wyoming native who started painting under the guidance of Ariel Lyons and Jane Austin at LCCVI as a student, uses both influences in her one-woman show presented by the Victoria Hall Art Advisory Committee at Victoria Hall this month.
Hext now lives in Burlington. She often grabs her camera and heads out on the road for inspiration.
As she travels, Hext takes photos of vast hills, winding roads and fall colours that inspire her to paint. “I love Ontario. You can just get in the car and drive out of the city to find inspiration,” she said Saturday during a break from hanging her works.
Hext is drawn to roads and pathways. Sometimes the colours in her photos are muted so she lets her imagination go.
“At some point, you have to put the photo down and let the painting guide you,” she says. Hext has been adding more colour to her works recently saying people are drawn to it.
“It is good to be loose and explore what I’m seeing with paint and I’m trying to use more colours together.”
Hext will spend more than a week on most of her paintings, working after she comes home from her job as an insurance adjuster.
While Hext has been fortunate to find places to display and sell her works, she is excited to be able to show in Petrolia.
“Karen Campbell called me and said they were looking for an artist and would I show? It was a nice surprise to be offered a place because it is hard to get a place to show.”
Hext paints for the joy of it, knowing it is next to impossible to make a living as an artist. She’s happy to just sell some of her work so she can buy more art supplies. “I’m satisfied breaking even,” she says.
Even in a world of digital photography and cheap department store art, Hext says people still appreciate the work she is doing.
“Some people do go to Walmart and get a huge piece of artwork for a small amount, but they don’t understand what goes into each painting or the work in the years before… to get up the skills to get there.”
But she says the world of accessible art may be having another effect: increasing the market for fine art.
“I know people who will invest in a piece that 20 million other people don’t have.”
Hext’s works will hang in the council chambers and bar area at Victoria Hall until the end of the month. An opening reception is being held Saturday starting at 5 pm.

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