Eelkje VanderMeulen-Smart Painting the Landscape

Eelkje VanderMeulen-Smart

Painting the Landscape


I was born in Leeuwarden, Netherlands and moved to Alberta as a young child. When I was five, I had it in my mind that one day I would be creative because I loved everything and wanted to share it with everyone. From that young age, I let my creativity and imagination take hold, and became a painter of people, places and things.

Later I enrolled in the Fine Arts program, at first the Red Deer College and then the University of Alberta. Painting and art history were my core subjects.

As a painter I try to make visual images in search between physical and spiritual forces. Images that challenge and are appealing like a thread which weaves itself through and connects the work. My paintings reflect my love of nature, strong emotions, and life itself.

My desire to capture the Landscape is strong because of its grandeur and ever-changing nature. Every time I come to paint, I see a different side to these mountains and prairies, ever changing through different seasons and time.

Every direction I look there is another painting. It would take for ever to capture everything on canvas.

Painting is the way I choose to express myself. The process of creating is forever interesting and exciting; the flash of an idea and the struggle of how to commit to canvas. Through my artwork I try to bring the outside in. Living with the natural world reminds us to slow down and helps us to reconnect with nature. A world alive with colour and feelings.

Painting has served me as a medium to express myself using simplified shapes, energetic brush strokes and bold hues to capture the drama of our natural world.

As one looks into nature nothing is perfect but at the same time everything is perfect. Most days I go to nature for inspiration and there it goes, more ideas. Could be creating art for ever and ever.

My Books

I am also a writer although painting is what I mostly do.

The first book I wrote is called, “Written on Stone,” a novel based on the arrival and survival of the First Nations People, in North, Middle and South America. My interest, curiosity and research on this subject came about from my husband’s indigenous background.

The second book is named, “Cardboard and Cigarettes”. Based on the true story of a young immigrant girl. Me!

My strength comes from contemplating the beauty of the earth. Painting the mountains, lakes and prairies have become my world. As my dad would often say “My church is the church of the big sky, valleys, lakes and mountains”.

Eelkje VanderMeulen-Smart

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See My Available Work