Work in Progress – Miniature Art

Currently in progress are several pieces of miniature art. The pieces are acrylic ink on paper and reflect themes of the west coast of Canada.

The above artwork, which is shown much enlarged compared to the size of the art in real life,  measures 7 cm in diameter. Artwork that can literally fit into the palm of your hand.

Miniature art is interesting. It is artwork that must be viewed up close. Art than can fit into any home. And due to it’s size, art that is affordable to own (and collect!).

Canadian inspired art by Debra Hunter.

Roe Islet Watercolor Painting

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Roe Islet, BC, Canada * (2015) * 4.75″ x 6.75″ * watercolor and ink on paper

With the insanity of everyday life taking a toll on my available time, I recently decided to take a break from the larger panels and instead enjoy painting in watercolors for a week or two. Watercolors require smaller amounts of time and commitment, plus I find simply by working on paper you are more likely to experiment. Experimentation is a good thing, keeping things loose and trying new things. It is easy to fit in two or three watercolors in a day, where a bigger panel takes weeks to complete. Some of the watercolors I have been working on are also scenes I have an interest  in painting on a large panel; in a way they are enjoyable research.

When I say this is a watercolor, it is in fact a watercolor overworked with ink. I quite like playing with adding a deep black after the fact. Working as a portrait photographer I am constantly avoiding shadows, always filling them in so that lines and character don’t show through. In my painting I can embrace shadows as a good thing, a defining element that is positive, and that is exactly what the black ink gives me….a good, strong, unapologetic shadow.

This watercolor and ink is of a natural area on Pender Island (British Columbia, Canada) called Roe Islet. I have been focusing on this location as a painting topic quite a bit recently. It’s natural and rugged with plants and moss and sea views too. It seems I am currently drawn to painting trees and this islet has a never ending variety of tree shapes,sizes and colors.

Painting by Debra Hunter







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“Night Arbutus” (2015) – Canadian Landscape Painting by Debra Hunter

"Night Arbutus" - Canadian landscape painting

“Night Arbutus” – Canadian landscape painting

Recently I have been working on a series of paintings based on Roe Islet, a protected Parks Canada site on Pender Island (British Columbia, Canada). I am really enjoying focusing on creating art based on the such an interesting area of Canadian landscape. This painting was done quickly one evening, I wanted to paint a simplified feel of the tree without getting too hung up on details. It is a small 8×10 painting, acrylic on canvas, that focuses on the twists of the tree and the colors of night. If you have the opportunity to ever stroll to the very end of Roe Islet, you will surely recognize the tree, just past the white bench and to the left. You can’t miss it.

Landscape painting and Canadian art by Debra Hunter
Red Deer, Alberta & Pender Island, British Columbia, Canada
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“Welcome Bay Arbutus” (2014) – new painting

"Welcome Bay Arbutus" 2014 24" x 36" acrylic on canvas

“Welcome Bay Arbutus”
24″ x 36″
acrylic on canvas

“Welcome Bay Arbutus” is another of my Pender Island paintings. This is a quiet little bay on North Pender Island and depicts a day, one November, that was cold, wet and foggy……what our family refers to as “it’s west-coasting outside”. Wellie weather.

“Welcome Bay Arbutus” is finally finished after two years of working on the canvas sporadically. At three feet wide it is one of my favorite sizes of canvas to paint on.

Working for such a long spread out time on this canvas created some interesting situations. First, I had to keep reminding myself what it was that first attracted me to the subject matter and what I wanted to present. The second thing that was tricky was keeping the style the same over the course of time. Last week I discovered that the painting looked like it had been painted in three different styles in distinct zones. One area I have no idea what I was originally thinking….apparently a sponge was handy and I used it (a lot!). The only way to solve the “three style” painting was to completely attack the areas that did not work, ignore what had been done in the past, and paint as if I was painting by scratch. In the end it all worked out and I am really happy with the piece.

Painting by Debra Hunter


“Trincomali Summer View” – Canadian Landscape Painting of Pender Island

"Trincomali Summer View" (2014) 8 inches by 10 inches acrylic on panel

“Trincomali Summer View”
8 inches by 10 inches
acrylic on panel

The last few weeks I have been focusing on small paintings on panel. This is a huge change to how I usually paint. Previously it was big canvases, usually 3 to 4 feet in length, that would take me a few months to complete. The 8 inch by 10 inch panels I have been painting recently only take two or three days. The switch to painting on panel from canvas has been interesting; the paint travels on a smooth surface quite differently than the rough surface of canvas. The decision to switch to painting on panel was a practical one; the panels travel easier, frame easier, and take up a lot less storage space than a stretched canvas. I think it is a good choice for pieces 11 x 14 and smaller.

The above painting is a view from a lookout in our neighborhood on Pender Island. It is a tucked away place at the end of a dead end road, a place where mostly locals go.  With the scarceness of rain, tall brown grass and bright blue skies are the summer colors of the island; a nice bright contrast to the silhouetted trees.


Painting by Debra Hunter
Red Deer, Alberta and Pender Island, BC, Canada


“Lupin by Canal Bridge” – new painting of the Canadian landscape

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“Lupin by Canal Bridge” (2014)

“Lupin by Canal Bridge”
8 inches by 10 inches
acrylic on panel

“Lupin by Canal Bridge” is one of my recently completed Pender Islands paintings. It is a colorful yet intimate piece as it only measures 8 inches by 10 inches. This painting revisits the wild lupin we encountered near the canal bridge, the single lane bridge that connects North Pender Island to South Pender Island . Coming across this lupin in the height of summer was such a pleasant surprise as at that time the islands are tones of yellow and brown with the drought like conditions. Pender Islands are part of the Gulf Islands of British Columbia, Canada. They provide endless inspiration for painting our Canadian landscape.

Painting by Debra Hunter.
Studio H / Hunter Photographics
Red Deer, Alberta & Pender Island, BC, Canada