Barbara Sohn    capturing the mesmerizing qualities of water

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When I retired in June, 2016 from my career as a social worker, I downsized from my home in Ottawa and moved to Perth, Ontario to a cedar home at the end of a road in the maple woods.  Over the winter, a small studio was built on the edge of the woods.  After a year’s sabbatical from painting, I resumed work in my new studio.  Now I am living my dream as a full-time painter, with the time to develop my work to its full potential.

Working with acrylics on canvas, I create images from local areas such as Murphy’s Point Provincial Park, Lanark County, and from my recent trip to the Yukon.

My paintings reflect my fascination with the interaction between light, colour and pattern in water and landscape.  Because of the many layers of design in water, the possibilities are endless.

I work to capture the mesmerizing qualities of water.  I paint the light, atmosphere and the transparency of water.

I explore the reflections that outline the movement in water – the reflected sky above reaching down.  The bottom sand, rocks and grasses reaching up.  The changing colours of the forest edges trying to define it.

My work is an ongoing process of discovery – that is, the observation of some aspect of our magnificent world that I have noticed and brought to life through my interpretation.  Colour is important.  I usually begin with a canvas that has a wash of colour such as violet or orange, which provides vibrancy, contrast and continuity to the painting.  The initial blocking-in is done with purple or red, and the darks are added in as navy blue or deep purple.  Then, with the addition of colour, the painting takes on a life of its own.  It seems that the best paintings paint themselves.

I was a member of the West End Studio Tour in Ottawa for 15 years.  I am now a member of the Ontario Society of Artists, the Rideau Lakes Artist Association, the West Carleton Art Association, the Eastern Central Ontario Art Association, Art Works! Perth and Arts Carleton Place.

I am currently represented by

  • Studio 87 in Perth, Ontario
  • The Mill at Chaffey’s Locks Art Gallery.

I have exhibited at various galleries throughout Ottawa and my art is in collections throughout the world.

Contact Barb at: