Driven to create her art

Parksville artist Andrea Kennedy creates abstract mixed media pieces, even when she only has one arm to do it.           Lissa Alexander Photo -
Parksville artist Andrea Kennedy creates abstract mixed media pieces, even when she only has one arm to do it. Lissa Alexander Photo
— image credit:

Andrea Kennedy’s creative mind never stops, and that’s why her art projects continued, even when she recently broke her right arm.

“I could be working 24 hours a day if I wanted,” she said, “that’s just my personality I guess.”

Despite her broken arm, Kennedy worked on three of her mixed media pieces. This involved adding collage materials to the acrylic paintings in her purse series, like Starbucks coffee rims, old letters, and other random items she has collected. Although she said the work has made her left arm much stronger, she found she did have some limitations.

“I was going to try and do a large canvas and I was pinning it on the wall and of course I couldn’t use both hands and it fell off and I had paint all in my hair and all over the wooden floor,” she said with a laugh.

It was then she thought she’d better stick to working on smaller items.

Kennedy’s work has earned her numerous awards of excellence with the Federation of Canadian Artists and decorates the walls of public buildings and galleries around Oceanside and Nanaimo, including the Parksville Conference Centre and the Parksville Public Library.

Kennedy grew up in Ottawa and moved to B.C. when she was 18, making her way to Parksville about four years ago. She holds a degree in graphic design, which may come out in her work, she conceded, but ultimately she loves working with shapes and colour.

“That’s what my work is all about,” she said, “I’m not a complicated person.”

Her work features both organic and geometric shapes, people and objects, all in in bold, provocative colours.

Kennedy said the best part about creating art for her is going into her own little world and doing whatever she wants. In the coming months she’s looking forward to doing just that, with both arms, she said.

Kennedy’s work is available from the Gallery at Qualicum Art Supply located at 102 - 206 W. First Avenue.


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