Moira Law

      Artist’s Statement

My artistic search is to find beauty in my world.   I believe our current situation can sometimes seem very dark; I am looking for the light.  I have always felt a powerful attraction to natural beauty but human creations can inspire me too.  Old, antique or sometimes even deteriorating objects and ancient settings move me particularly.  Perhaps I associate wisdom with age; I am drawn to the nostalgic and historical.  

Both in my travels and locally, I try to capture the beauty of what I see with my camera.  The images I make become the raw material for my art.  Once at home, in my digital darkroom, I ponder each of these images until I find something that particularly touches me.   That image becomes the basis for my work. 

I don’t consciously plan what the final image will be.  I keep working on it, sometimes reversing myself if I don’t like where the piece seems to be going.  Sometimes I set it aside for several days and come back to it. Often this “percolation” phase gives me a renewed impetus to finish the piece.  Other times, it helps me to realize that the piece is done. 

Most of my work is created in two parts:  the photography-based image and the abstract canvas underneath, prepared using textures and colours extracted from that image.  The photograph itself I modify extensively using software filters, layers, brush strokes, blends and masks, depending on the effects that seem to suit. 

My ultimate aim in making art is to create something beautiful and evoke an appreciation for what he have, a love of the world around us and desire to preserve it for the future.  

An Oasis | Moira Law

 

The work of digital collage artist, Moira Law, is inspired by the gifts of the world around her that have touched her in her journey through life.  She invites the viewer to share that appreciation and enter into an oasis of beauty, a haven from the chaos of modern living, a mini holiday from the turmoil of the real world.  She also delights in finding beauty in surprising places where you might least expect it, overlaying now faded glory with a the patina of time. 

 Born into a nomadic life, Law has always relished travel.  Before the age of six, she had already crossed the North American continent four times. Law says she felt like an anomaly in her family where the interest of her parents and sister turned toward classical music and literature, mathematics and finance rather than to fine art.  Her childhood was a rich one, filled with travel, music and literature but she was not exposed to art as a child.  Accordingly as a young woman, she opted to follow the family tradition and take a degree in literature and start a career in the business world.  Even so, she managed to focus her work on writing, which at least offered some outlet for her hidden but increasingly insistent creative instincts. 

Consistent with her nomadic nature, her work had her travelling across the country and it was during a business trip to Québec City that she met the handsome young pilot who became her husband.  They lived in Québec City, Germany (where Law took thousands of pictures) Montréal and Ottawa, before retiring to a small forest in Mountain Township.  During their time in Germany they travelled extensively and along with her German Language Studies at the Freiburg Goethe Institut, Law took a programme in French Civilization at Strasbourg University.  It included an art history course and she was hooked.  After that, subsequent travels focused on the many art galleries in France, Germany, Italy and England. 

She helped organize a group of military wives to establish an art boutique in the Canadian community in Germany for the group to sell their work.  Law offered her woven wall hangings for sale.  She had continued to experiment with different art forms: weaving, hand spinning, fibre dyeing, needlework, ceramics, crochet, knitting, gardening, flower arranging, cooking and photography.  But it was several years later, back in Canada, when the digital revolution hit the photographic industry that she finally found her true medium. 

As soon as digital single lens reflex cameras became affordable, Law bought one and took up her earlier photographic pursuits with increased enthusiasm.  Her first teachers were friends, Frank Reiter who tutored her in photography and Wendy Stevenson who introduced her to Adobe Photoshop. She read books on photography and studied on-line as well with Scott Kelby, Zack Arias, Sue Bryce, and many other instructors on Lynda.com and Creative Live. 

It was at this time that a friend persuaded her to try an on-line game called Second Life.  As it happened, there was a large art community in Second Life comprising many working artists, gallery owners and art curators.  She was able to present her real-life work in this fantasy environment where it brought her praise and encouragement.  As she continued to hone her skills she discovered a book, “The Art of Photoshop” by Daniel Giordan that caused her to make a complete change of direction.  She was enchanted with the idea of creating fine art with the use of digital photographs and software.  Again, she set out to learn as much as possible this time from instructors like Lesa Snider, Lindsay Adler, David Duchemin, Doug Landreth and Sebastian Michaels.

Law wanted to see if she could create a digital version of the encaustic work she first saw in a local art show and was drawn to.  She attended several local artists’ workshops to learn more about how encaustic was created. Later, her sister-in-law, Québec painter and sculptor, Nicole Duprès, offered her a weekend workshop in abstract painting.  This experience inspired her to add more abstract elements to her work through the use of brushes and other digital content. 

Her subsequent development of an appreciation for negative space helped her refine her style and find her voice.  Her pieces resemble mixed media collages of photographic and other elements coupled with a strong component of white space, now typical of her distinctive style. 

 

Law’s creations emerge from her subconscious as she creates them. She says she doesn’t know in advance what the final piece will be. When working she feels almost as if she passes into an altered state and time slips by without her awareness.  While she may eventually tire of other activities if she pursues them for too long, she says, with her art that never happens.

 

 Moira Law

Education        

The Photographer’s Workflow, Gavin Gough                     

Lighting for Photographers, Zack Arias                                

The Nikon D800, Dan Greengo                                              Facebook: Moira Law Images

Fashion and Portrait Photography, Lindsay Adler                

Fashion Portraits, Sue Bryce

Conceptual Photography, Jennifer Thoreson

Drawing the Eye, David Duchemin

Becoming an Artist Joel, Grimes

Photoshop, Lesa Snider

Lightroom, Matt Kloskowski and Jared Platt

Selections and Masking, Ben Willmore

Beyond Photography, Doug Landreth

Dramatic Post-production, David Nightingale

Retouching, Chris Orwig

Extreme Retouching, Lindsay Adler

Photo-restoration, Susan Allen

The Art of Photoshop, Dan Giordin

Photoshop Artistry, Sebastian Michaels

Awake, the Photo-artist, Sebastian Michaels

Art Business Academy, Jason Horejs

 

Exhibitions

Juried Art Show, Great Big Smalls, Cube Gallery, Ottawa (Held Over)

Juried Art Show, Baz’art, Shenkman Arts Centre, Ottawa

Juried Art Show, Frontenac Arch Biosphere, Ontario, Theme Art and the Arch

Juried Art Show, Marianne van Silfhout Gallery, Brockville, ON

Juried Art Show, Artspace/Lima, Lima Ohio, 

CLIC Eastern Ontario Photo Show and Sale, Picton, ON 

Juried Studio Tour, Discovery Tour, North Gower-Kars, ON

Los Angeles Center for Digital Art, Snap to Grid,

Solo Show, Gallery 6, Kemptville, ON

 

Collectors

Elizabeth Barton (Theatre Director, Actor) – 2 pieces

Leslie Bond – (Social Worker(ret), Art Collector) 2 pieces

Alana Drawson – (Interior Designer) 6 pieces

Rachelle Eves – (Teacher, daughter of well-known visual artist, Richard Eves) 7 pieces

Colleen Howard – (Musician, retired) 1 piece

Rev. Christine Lowson – (United Church Minister) 3 pieces

Ann Morgan – (Art Professor, Algonquin College) 2 pieces

Shannon Murdock – (Film Actor, Model) 2 pieces

Karen O’Connor – 1 piece

Eric Pietersma – Lawyer, (Horner and Pietersma) 3 pieces

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