Sheila knew that she was an artist at a very young age and recognized her ability as a gift and a calling from God. Her life-long journey in art began as a young girl who taught herself to paint by studying and copying the paintings of the old masters. She grew up in Brockville, Ontario and at age fourteen studied drawing under artist Mario Airomi, with whom her desire to become a professional artist was inspired and encouraged.
For the past thirty-plus years, Sheila’s focus has been on expressing her love of nature on canvas. Her acrylic paintings capture the strength and beauty found in creation through dramatic composition with a soft life-like quality that draws the viewer in. Her skill and versatility as an artist are demonstrated in the many and often unexpected subjects she portrays which often convey a message of hope. She also enjoys working in mixed media and sculpture but her true love is for painting.
Sheila’s artwork has received numerous awards and has gained international recognition in the world of wildlife art. Her paintings have been featured by many conservation organizations, such as Ducks Unlimited Canada and Artists for Conservation(AFC). Since her first show in 1982, Sheila continues to exhibit her art in many shows across Canada and beyond and is a perennial exhibitor at the prestigious Buckhorn Fine Art Festival (formerly the Buckhorn Wildlife Art Festival) located in Buckhorn, Ontario.
Her work can be found in many private and corporate collections around the world. In 2003 Sheila was the featured artist for the WPBS TV Art Auction in Watertown New York, where “Natural Instincts”, a half-hour documentary about Sheila and her career as an artist was produced and aired.
Sheila began her journey as an artist at age twelve with her first set of oil paints and continues to this day. She now lives and paints in her studio, in the village of Lyn, Ontario and dedicates most of her art to Christian ministry.
“Painting is my intimate time with God, a time of worship and a time of great peace.” ~ Sheila Ballantyne