Bowser artist Lynda Hyndman stands with different series of her work currently on display at the Qualicum Art Supply and Gallery until approximately the end of May. Nature and mythology play an integral part of Hyndman’s process, acting both as a muse and subject matter. (Mandy Moraes photo)

Bowser artist Lynda Hyndman stands with different series of her work currently on display at the Qualicum Art Supply and Gallery until approximately the end of May. Nature and mythology play an integral part of Hyndman’s process, acting both as a muse and subject matter. (Mandy Moraes photo)

Bowser artist looks to bridge the gap between humanity and nature in her work

Lynda Hyndman’s work to be on display at the Qualicum Art and Supply Gallery until end of May

A Bowser painter, whose work is currently on display at the Qualicum Art Supply and Gallery, aims to harness the energy of nature and its relation to humanity through her work.

Lynda Hyndman, who has studied at Vancouver City College, Malaspina University College and Camosun College, has painted for as long as she can remember.

She works to convey the elemental forces she’s witnessed to something tangible on canvas. Her years of dedicated study resulted in an BA in Fine Arts and Liberal Studies, with which she’s been able to teach studio classes at Iron Oxide Arts Supplies in Nanaimo.

Although predominately an acrylic painter, Hyndman has dabbled with other mediums.

“It often depends on the nature of the subject matter I choose. I tend to match the subject matter up with the materials and the techniques that I’m going to employ,” she said. “And not all materials express the subject matter the same way.”

She aims to emulate the complexity of nature, and often builds her acrylic up layer by layer to show how such material can build up as they would in nature. Her work can show scratches and different textured markings to signify how natural materials get compressed into different variations.

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Each canvas can take anywhere between 12 to 20 hours of dedication, allowing for drying time between layers.

Hyndman will work in a series exploring a theme, rather than a single painting at a time. Her themes have included the West Coast weather system, the build up of soil, and the growth of a forest.

“When I come upon a subject that I’m really interested in – that’s usually like a launching pad.”

She spoke of how when she read David Suzuki’s The Sacred Balance, it played the role of a launching pad and made her think about where she lived and the balance of nature. From there, she wrote notes on how she wanted her future artwork to feel, and what materials would best express that. And she works, the natural development of acrylic layers will tell her what techniques to use.

When she was younger, Hyndman studied Greek literature and in doing so, she learned how various ‘early cultures’ interpreted nature that surrounded them.

“For what we call mythological terms, for them, it was very real,” she said. “They identified with it. And so I have always gone to mythology for resources on how the human mind incorporates nature into its imagination. How we sometimes rename it in imaginative way. I found that early cultures have so much more connection. They haven’t divorced themselves so much from nature as we have, in our present day. How they’ve touched on nature was so imaginative and so rich in how they played with it. I really found myself being very attracted to that.”

She aims to bridge the gap between present-day humanity and nature through art, and to show how it plays in the collective subconscious.

While in art school, she attempted to create a sense of what some Greek entities might look like, which lead her to create a whole series based on Homer’s Odyssey.

She also appreciates how her artwork can speak to herself and to others, one time surprising even herself. In one example, when she had finished a painting, she said she stood back and noticed something she had no idea was there.

“I realized there was this little semi-nude figure in it, a sort of female subject. And I thought, what is she doing there?” said Hydman with a chuckle. “So I just called it Nymph in the Woods.”

Hyndman said this happens more often than not, where something reveals itself after the fact, something she hadn’t expected.

As an artist, one of her greatest joys is when someone else finds something they appreciate in a specific piece. This shows how her own work can have a totally different conversation with someone else, unbeknownst to her.

Hyndman’s work will be on display at the Qualicum Art Supply and Gallery until the approximately the end of May.

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