DorothyPainting Spotted Lake

For those who love the earth

  • Brief Biography:
  • I was born in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. One of my favourite times as a child was leaving the bustling City of Vancouver every weekend by boat in the summer. We had an old cabin cruiser called the Sharon L that enabled my parents, and my three sisters to travel through Burrard Inlet over to Bowen Island. My dad was a marine watercolour artist, and I spent time observing his technique from an early age. As a graduate from UBC with a Bachelor of Education, I began teaching in Burnaby, and then Penticton.

    Moving to Penticton in the beautiful Okanagan, provided many outdoor experiences. Staying close to nature, and being outdoors has definitely shaped my art. I spent many happy years teaching school in Penticton. After having two children, it was not long before I was active in the community volunteering, and then later serving as a councillor (elected as Dorothy Whittaker) starting in 1983-1986, and then elected Mayor for the City of Penticton from 1986-1990. Since my children were in high school, I found it was time to step down from local government and return to teaching part time. This provided me with an opportunity to take art education courses offered through the UVic transfer program with Dr. Sharon McCoubrey. I found that participating in the practical art work, and preparing programs specifically designed for students, that once again visual art became a passion. Volunteering with the Penticton Art Gallery for four years up until 2017 with the Young@Art Group was also rewarding.

    Since 2006 I have been a full time artist working out of my studio in Penticton, B.C. I was proud to give a talk about my art work at the Penticton TEDx conference held in 2012 in Penticton, British Columbia and as part of the Speaker’s Bureau for Okanagan College. Currently I have art work on exhibition and for sale at Spirit Ridge Resort Gallery, Osoyoos, Tutt Street Gallery, Kelowna and Dorothy's Fine Art Studio, Penticton. In 2012, I was commissioned to do a painting for the Lieutenant-Governor, Steven L. Point, which was presented to him at a private ceremony at Government House in Victoria B.C. The Meadowlark Nature Festival invited me to be their featured artist, and consequently I had a solo exhibition at the Penticton Art Gallery in June of 2017. Visitors are welcome to tour my studio, and hear about how nature inspires my art, and view the new releases that I am creating.

  • Artist Statement:

The underlying theme in my paintings tends to be a celebration of the uniqueness of our beautiful local landforms that reflect the beauty and mystery of the Okanagan area. Since I feel immense joy when I am outdoors, I am inspired and connected to the spiritual side of expressing what I see in nature. That moment in time when I am sensitive to the many signs of a people before me, their gathering places, and the waterways that were used to sustain the people in this area over time, sustains me, and provides a personal depth to my art work. I use vibrant colours of acrylic on canvas to express my excitement of painting what I observe, and what I believe in and wish to share with others. A quote attributed to Chief Seattle, Salishan Nation, helps direct my work, “This we know, the earth does not belong to man, man belongs to the earth. All things are connected, like the blood that unites us all.”