Barbara Olsen

Barbara Olsen

An interpretive style, pushing both color and reality

Barbara Olsen

Background

Barbara attended the Alberta College of Art and Design in Calgary, Canada, during the late seventies.   A freshman trip to New York City fueled a lifelong passion for art. Since that time, her path to identifying as an artist has taken a circuitous route from art student to retail display designer, from computer science student to computer analyst, from professional to stay-at-home parent.  She now finds herself returning full circle to creating art. Her interpretive style, pushing both color and reality, has been influenced by her exposure to structure and design in her education and careers in art, retail and technology, and through living and working internationally. Barbara utilizes water-based and mixed media, and most recently, has been exploring the themes of time and transition in her work.


Affiliations
Barbara is a signature member of the Colorado Watercolor Society and a juried member of the Arizona Watercolor Association. She has exhibited in Canada and the United States and has received numerous awards and recognition. Her work appears in two book series: Splash (16) The Best of Watercolor and Incite (3 and 4) The Best of Mixed Media, both published by North Light Books. She has also illustrated two book covers: My Love Affair with Bruges and Carla and Antonio, written by Margaret Olsen and published by Balboa and Friesen Press.

Insight
"My earliest creative memory is of drawing squares while I spoke on the telephone as a young girl. I would draw an X inside the first square, connecting opposite corners. Then, I'd draw another square alongside it in the same manner. I 'built' an endless number of these arrays comprised totally of squares, each one divided into four equal triangles. This type of pattern-building fascinated me and the innate allure that I felt toward drawing lines, repeating shapes, and organizing and dividing space continues to inform many of my creations today."

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