Thank you Pacific Northwest Art Institute


Just finished up a wonderful 3 day workshop at the Pacific Northwest Art Institute on Whidbey Island. Big thank you for the center’s director Lisa Bernhart for going the extra mile and hosting me, proving me with a support person ( my angel – more on her later!), the over the top fantastic workshop venue, kind positive and fun loving students (class photo upcoming each holding their favourite art piece they made, again upcoming), and for making me feel so appreciated. Honestly, I felt like an artist super star. Really feels like living my dream. Thank you for being part of that coming true for me! See you in 2018 !

8 Ways to Start an Abstract Painting


Some students shared at the start  of the workshop that simply starting a painting can be daunting, so we brainstormed together 8 ways you can start an abstract painting using acrylics. If you are at the beginning and staring at a white canvas and don’t know where to start, this blog is for you!

  1. Choose a colour or colour scheme and start making marks and gestures with that colour. You could mix that colour with black and white and create a range of colours from that single colour.
  2. Choose a specific composition and adhere to that structure with your painting. For example: horizontal or vertical composition.
  3. Make some drips and splashes on your canvas with watered down acrylic paint and see what forms, go from there.
  4. Using your paint brush, fingers, foam brush, paper towel & other tools put marks on your canvas, asking yourself; “How can I do this differently?” Challenge yourself to make each stroke different in some way.
  5. Get clear on a theme or meaning for your painting and let that guide you. For example, your painting could be about love so you would start painting in a way that defines love visually for you.
  6. Look at some shadow shapes around you and use this lines and shapes to create negative/positive space areas for your painting.
  7. Look at another painting or photograph you like and attempt to copy it- make some changes to it so it’ll become yours as you go !
  8. Use a view finder on an existing painting or image and zoom in on an area you really like that could work on its own as a painting. Use that localized portion of the painting as your inspiration for your new painting.

Above Photo – Deb Chaney doing a painting demo at the ‘Layers & Process Workshop’ today a the Pacific Northwest Art Institute on Whidbey Island. Deb Chaney – portfolio – workshops –

Art Social Finale


Had so much fun last night at the live painting event at the shipyards venue in North Vancouver at the fabulous Shipyards Venue. Here’s the painting I created in 37 minutes along with myself and it’s new owners! Yes… there are sparkles, collage, and all sorts of mixed media in there. ..I had a blast being in creative process with this piece! Felt so much appreciation from this couple who purchased my artwork, this made me feel so special and appreciated! Thank you! Big thanks to Bill Higginson & Ben Lumb for inviting me & organizing the event.


Centerfold Pop Up Gallery Show

I am so deeply honored and grateful to have these six Little Gem pieces up for sale at the upcoming Centerfold Pop Up Gallery Show this Saturday night August 20th, 2016 in East Vancouver at 4575 Alexandra Street, Van, BC V6J 4 C9.

What I love and appreciate so much about being part of this show is that this gallery is a new model of doing business and it’s all about supporting artists. Centerfold is Montreal-based organization with the aim of driving social and economic change in the art industry. Their goal is to enable artists to gain exposure and funding while increasing art awareness within the community. This is what we need to see more of: win-win situations for both galleries and artists !

Starting from the top left-hand corner, and rotating clockwise, the paintings above are: ‘Floating Away’, ‘It’s All That’, ‘Love’, ‘Tangerine’, and ‘Split Complimentary’. These are all part of my Little Gems Series, each 9” x 12” Mixed Media on Loose Canvas, and Original Artwork by Deb Chaney. Available for sale.  Plus —There is one more painting entitled ‘Joy’ not shown here but it will be at the gallery that night! Go see!


Art Social Live Painting Event: August 20th – 2016. Join us!

TheArtSocial.pngWe are putting 30 of Vancouver’s rising art stars under the spotlight. They have 37 minutes each to go from blank canvas to finished artwork. This all happens while you are enjoying music, a few drinks and meeting new friends. Then all of the artworks will go to auction, starting at $70. This is the Art Social II and I have never participated in anything like this before!

Why 37 minutes?
The time frame is 37 minutes in order to honour Robert Genn, a Canadian legend and art mentor who passed away in 2014. One of his teaching methods was to paint an artwork in 37 minutes, then paint that same artwork in 37 paint strokes. It makes you think carefully about what you are putting on canvas.
The event will be benefiting the Children of the Street Society. Learn more about them here,
Come join us for  a social night of art!
When: Saturday, August 20, 2016 from 5:30 PM to 11:30 PM (PDT)
Where: The Shipyards – 15 Wallace Mews, North Vancouver – view location map

(no guarantee for ticket at the doors, best to purchase ahead of time)

See you there!


Six New Little Gem Paintings

Each of these Little Gems paintings is a visual snapshot of my play and practice as an artist. I began with6 a blank sheets of loose gessoed canvas paper, a few chosen and limited colours of acrylic paints, some mixed media bits such as water soluble pencils, and some fun tools – in this case foam circles and my finger tips! The process is quick and happens with a focus on creating with a few primary marks and this limited palette. As I create I encourage myself to stretch and do things differently each time with the same limitations. Sometimes the pieces work out, sometimes they are beautiful ‘mistakes’ – just like life. But the important part is to keep practicing and enjoying the

From top left, clock-wise. ‘Without Hindrance’, ‘Full Expansion’, ‘Flow & Trust’, ‘Absence of Subjection’, ‘Physically Free’ and ‘Unaffected by Gravity’. Each are 9″ x 12″ on loose canvas, easy to frame to match your style & design aesthetic, easy to ship.  or text (604) 736-5111.