STUDIO VISITS: Meet well-travelled Diane McCarten

After the opening reception to our group show UNSCRIPTED in Qualicum Beach, Vancouver island, my friend Catherine Fields and I stayed with abstract artist Diane McCarten in her beautiful ocean-front house in Nanoose Bay. Here’s the view as you walk in the front door! Diane is my featured artist today.


I met Diane 2 years ago in that Steven Aimone workshop in Nanaimo…the same one in which I befriended Barbara Ann Scott, my previous STUDIO visit! Diane is the beauty in yellow with the sunglasses below at the opening of our May exhibition entitled STUDIO at CityScape in North Vancouver.


Below are three paintings Diane produced during that workshop (all 48×48 works on paper) and the first two of which she exhibited in the STUDIO show. Here is the link to the photos of the demonstration Diane participated in as part of our community component which was the most attended demonstration ever!!



Living far and wide

Diane was born in Calgary and received her BEd major in art from the University of Alberta in Edmonton. She married, taught school and had a family. She also  lived in Holland, Denmark, Malta and spent many years living in the heat of Texas, painting in acrylic and watercolors, drawing, collage and printmaking in all those far away places


Diane’s studio space

When Diane and her husband decided to retire and come back to Canada they settled on the east coast of Vancouver Island. They built a beautiful home right on the water’s edge and although Diane couldn’t get her large studio over the garage due to building restrictions, she sees the glass as half full and loves the coziness of her current creative space with the little porch down the side of the house overlooking the water.


In behind Diane’s easel she has created what she calls her “bits wall”…a large sheet of paper pasted to the wall upon which Diane glues bits of things going on in her life, in her art, drawings made by her grandchildren, little sayings, so that she has a record of “life”!



Current work

In the past few months Diane has had the urge to create a series which she calls Shadow…figures on a horizon with a long shadow extending to the bottom of the canvas/paper. She says she’s done at least 40 of all shapes and sizes…they just keep coming out of her and evolving. She’s used old paper, discarded canvases, and she’s even created a ‘skin’ from a stamp which she plans to affix to the back of the works in the series…incredible how the creative mind works!


And her favorite tool at the moment…the BIG brush!!



Look for her 3-woman show next year at TOSH…I’m excited to see what she’ll exhibit!

One thought on “STUDIO VISITS: Meet well-travelled Diane McCarten

  1. Great feature on Diane, I enjoyed reading and seeing her new paintings. Great photos of di and her work and studio. Thanks for sharing. Jill

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