Carla Bate is a high school Art Teacher in Edmonton, and has been teaching Art for 13 years. She received her BEd from the University of Alberta in 2003. As an artist, she is attracted to highly contrasted colours and collaged texture. Much of what she is fascinated with involves abstracted shapes, but she also enjoys a good still life.
I am inspired by colour on a daily basis. I love accidental compositions found in every-day situations, that one might observe while on a walk, or at a restaurant. I often pause when I see these amazing, unplanned arrangements, and I begin to mix the colours in my mind, puzzling out the ratios and recipes. While I do love observational painting and drawing, I have always loved the play behind abstraction. My challenge has always been in the process of abstraction, and how to successfully create a nonfigurative composition that satisfies the Principles of Design, but also satisfies my message or meaning. Because of my passion and profession as a teacher, I am almost never content with a single medium, and often begin including whatever colourful thing I can get my hands on. I also love the use of text, which allows me to include my other love- Creative Writing. In the process of discovering how to create effective abstract work, I have begun using stencils and cutting up my work after it is complete. In this way, I am using still able to use the text I love, but I am producing artwork that is so small, that the text is reduced to line and colour in both a deliberate and accidental way. This has also challenged what I believe about what makes “good” or “professional” art, because the pieces I am creating are, on average, 2”x2”. The use of text and the subsequent cutting and slicing is incredibly cathartic and meditative. This directly aligns with my philosophy of allowing Art to be a tailor-made method for both students and adults to take care of their mental health.