Artist’s Statement – Debra Hunter
The art I produce is heavily inspired by nature and the Canadian experience. As I hike, paddle or snowshoe I am always looking for a new theme to explore. I work in a variety of disciplines, some of which are painting, drawing, photography, natural dyeing and hand knits. I also have a huge interest in exploring traditional methods of creating, especially when it involves natural materials. Often one discipline will inspire another, especially in my use of pattern and color, and the influence of nature.
My two dimensional work currently examines the themes of nature, the Canadian landscape, and the Canadian outdoor experience. Paintings and drawings range from miniature works on paper to large canvases. Color and pattern feature prominently, adding a personal stylistic response to the themes. Patterns are often reminiscent of knit patterns, creating a relationship between two of the media I often work in.
My personal photography concentrates on landscape, nature, and black and white images. This is a very different subject matter than that of my profession and business, Hunter Photographics, which is portrait and business photography. Looking at the world close-up, in different lighting, and in weather both foul and fair, allows me to view my everyday world more deeply and see the beauty in the details that are so easily missed through the course of our busy daily lives.
My hand knits embrace exploring Canadian knitting traditions and the Canadian experience. Pieces often feature stranded techniques to create patterned works. Motifs utilized range from maple leafs, trees and mountains, to patterning reflecting traditions of fair isle knitting and that of the regions surrounding the Salish Sea. The provenance of my materials is of huge importance to me, using only Canadian produced and milled wool. In addition to my desire to use Canadian raw materials, I also have made the conscious decision to work only with naturally dyed wools, of which I craft the dyes myself and hand dye my yarns in micro batches. Embellishments for the hand knits often feature hand carved toggles, which again focuses on being created from local materials.
Whether I am creating through paint, wool, or photography, all my creative endeavors are strongly linked to nature and my Canadian experience.