Kathy Bradshaw is a Saskatoon artist creating beautiful landscapes and floral paintings using oil and encaustic mediums. Scroll down to learn more about Kathy Bradshaw and what inspired her to start painting.
Artist Kathy Bradshaw
What inspired you to start painting?
I always loved to draw as a child and when I turned 40, I decided to take a community painting class and fell in love. My instructor encouraged me to keep going so I eventually completed my BFA with a major in painting in 2005. I have been a full-time artist since retiring from teaching in 2016.
How would you describe your art shop?
I am an encaustic & oil painter and my major subjects are landscape, floral still life and animal portraiture. I work “alla prima” with oils, but most of my current work is with encaustic. Encaustic is an ancient medium that I explored while completing my degree. It is comprised of beeswax, tree resin and pigment and is worked with while in a molten state. It is applied to a rigid surface (usually a wooden panel but I also work on salvaged metal and barnwood) with brushes and palette knives. The layers cool immediately and the critical step to create permanency is to melt the layers together using a heat gun or a blow torch. So it’s a messy business!
Encaustic dates back to 1000 BC and was originally used by the Greeks to waterproof their ships. Eventually it was used to paint Egyptian death mask portraits and though it disappeared for quite some time, it is currently in a revival and remains the oldest painting still in use today.
What’s your best selling product and why is it so popular?
My expressive sky landscapes.
I live in Saskatchewan, the “land of living skies”, so am surrounded by such inspiration daily. Our skies are vast and ever-changing with the light and I think most people find skies uplifting, inspiring and spiritual in nature. At least I do and this is what I aspire to convey in my work! Sunrises and sunsets are especially fun to work with because of the intense colours and the fantastic light. I think that encaustic lends itself to this subject matter beautifully because of its dreamy luminous nature and its tendency to flow when heat is applied. Depending on what I wish to express, I also use oil sticks, metallic powders and inks, gold leaf and tar in my paintings. These other media add further dimension, vibrancy, luminosity and light to my work.
What’s your favourite product from your own shop?
I paint a lot of pet portraits in encaustic and oil and I really love connecting with people’s special animals. Lots of people commission commemorative portraits so that they are reminded of their animal’s image and spirit in their homes in the years to come and painting these is very rewarding for me.
What’s your favourite local Saskatoon business?
Oh how can I pick! My go-to for art supplies in Saskatoon is Art Placement. They also represent my art in their gallery. Both aspects of their business are the longest running in Saskatchewan.