Crystal Driedger

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Crystal grew up in the small farming community of Alder Flats, Alberta and now lives and works from her home studio in Sherwood Park full time as an artist and illustrator. After graduating from Grant MacEwan College with a focus on Illustration, Crystal spent 4 years as the lead in-house illustrator. She left to start her freelance career, where she created illustrations and ventured into the fine art scene by creating paintings and carvings that she started exhibiting. Crystal has a fondness for oil paint and also carves basswood, which she paints in acrylics. She is inspired by honing technical skills, but also with the desire to add an emotion/personality using colour, texture and brush strokes to her pieces while maintaining the integrity of the subject. She is currently working on a series of animal portraits in oil.

Artist Statement:

My inspirations stem from a childhood spent imagining and exploring in the forests and fields of my families remote Alberta farm. The way I saw the world then, full of possibilities - rich colour, hidden creatures (real or imagined), sun dappled moss under tree branches, cows chasing flies with their tails, the sound of the wind -being in outside took away the stresses of the day that school and home life brought on. It’s the same for me today, always going back to that headspace to view the world: watching “reality” transform - subtle colours transform into vibrant brush strokes, figures take on a whimsical quality, movement is implied using texture or brush strokes. My paintings have a language to them - the brush strokes playing like music, like the sound of the wind. Depending on the subject, or the way I want to depict these imaginings, I will hand-carve into basswood or paint with thick, buttery strokes of rich oil paint. I want you to feel taken back to the beautiful way you looked at the world as a child even though, for most of us, including myself, we are now worlds away living each day in a city, constantly battling an adults inner demon amongst noise and interruption.

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