Harmonious Balance: Artist Heather Haynes Stays True to This Philosophy in Life and in Art

Article excerpt

The life and work of artist Heather Haynes is all about balance. It's a motto she has lived by for the past 37 years, and one that has served her well in the decade she has spent as a professional artist.

"Everything is about balance for me in art, family and life," Haynes says. "My art is about balance in color, texture and form. It has a calm feeling about it, and yet, it has this energy and this pull of emotion that people seem to pick up on."

Indeed, Haynes' dynamic still-life images accented with hints of abstraction have resonated in several ways with buyers through the years. The artist is represented in more than 15 galleries in Canada, Europe and the United States, and her paintings remain in high demand among a diverse group of collectors.

Haynes' intense desire to paint began at age 5. She was always the little girl who said she would grow up and become an artist. From that time on, Haynes never wavered from that dream. "I had supportive parents, so in that sense, I was lucky," she explains. "When you're an artist, it's something that's just in you, so I immediately headed toward that dream."

Haynes attended McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario where she earned her degree in visual arts. It was a small program that gave her just the type of education she needed--one in which students were given the necessary tools to create, and were then set free to "play."

Haynes considers her first big break as an artist to be when she met her husband, Jeff Montgomery, who gave her the encouragement to follow her dreams. "We started out poor and didn't care; it just grew from there," Haynes recalls. "I always found success in the level that I needed at the time. I charged realistically for my work, promoted myself and started doing shows. The rest is history."

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Not wanting to rush things, Haynes waited for success to come to her. She knew things would fall into place when the time was right yet another testament to her trust in the notion of balance and harmony.

The strategy paid off: The single gallery in Quebec City where Haynes first began showing her work turned into another and then another, eventually leading to her relationship with Progressive Fine Art, which has proven fruitful for the past two years. "In life, it's about choosing the right path and listening to your inner voice--being ready for opportunity when it presents itself," Haynes says. "Every time I do that, it has worked in my favor."

Haynes is thankful for the nearly 12 years she spent painting and waiting for the right opportunity to partner with a gallery and publisher because it gave her the chance to develop her work, which has evolved immensely through the years.

"It has been a real evolution," Haynes says. "My painting is about the process and about opening up to the experience and working on instinct. I try not to over-think it. I find my best paintings are created when I get lost in the experience. But it took me many years to get to that point."

Haynes begins her spontaneous creations by splattering abstract color on the canvas to achieve the under painting. …