Biography of Jennifer Lawson
|Photo Susan Stitt
Jennifer Lawson was born in Yorkshire and at an early age she began to soak up the brilliant colours around her, the warm tones rampantly spilling around country cottages, or trailing over garden fences. Her young eye was seduced by the sight of rich Indian textiles and lush patterns while traveling in India in the late 1960s, and that too has found expressions in her exuberant and charming paintings.
Holding two honours art degrees, one from the University of Guelph and another from Geoergian College, Jennifer received the scholarship for highest achievements and best student at the latter, before going on to study further at the Ontario College of Art and Schneider School of Fine Art. She received awards wherever she went- for highest achievements and best student.
For more than 25 years Jennifer has been painting a swath across Canada, and making a name for herself as an "English Country" watercolourist. After living and exhibiting in Toronto and Ottawa for over 20 years- with shows at the Art Gallery of Kingston, York Fine Art Gallery, Windsor Art Gallery and Indian and Albany Institute of New York- she decided to move west. She mixes pure colours with clear water to create her romantic and impressionistic scenes, capturing not only gentle nuances of light but also the joyous riots of colour she sees around her.
She paints commissions from photographs, but is most happy while painting on location. Living in the Duncan area, on the Cowichan Estuary where she swims every summer in the river, she carts her easel down to the lane to a near cottage, or off to someone's garden to capture it at the height of its beauty. Her utopian vision is always painted on pure rag paper.
Jennifer lives the life she paints, at her warm and welcoming historic house overlooking the Estuary. Her art reveals her as an optimist who is absorbed in the beauty around her, whether it is a quaint, prussian blue beach nestled under a blossoming tree, a highland wheelbarrow, or idyllic-looking home set in a bucolic countryside.
Her work is in many private and permanent collections including that of former B.C
Lt.Gov. David Lam, Ed Broadbent and the late Judy Lamarshe, the permanent collection of Georgian College, as well as many schools, libraries, corporations and real estate companies. They are also reprinted on hundreds of greeting cards, which are seen coast to coast. Her awards are as numerous as the blossoms in her work and include Best Painting at the Discovery II exhibition in Toronto, Awards of Merit from the B.C Regional Art Show and Cowichan Valley Arts Council shows and first prize in the Cowichan Exhibition in 1995.
One of Jennifer's specialties is commissioned paintings. Every subject from homes, gardens and businesses to tea parties and pets become valued promotions and treasured heirlooms.
Jennifer is a member of an exciting new professional group: The Cowichan Valley Artisans. Please check out their website at CowichanValleyArtisans.com for upcoming events.