July and August 2017: A small selection of my work, courtesy of Darrell Bell Gallery, is available at Boffins restaurant (111 Research Drive, U of S campus) throughout the summer months.

November 10, 2016:
I was interviewed by Daily Paintworks as their Spotlight Artist for a week! Read my interview on the DPW News blog!


Ongoing: my 8x8" original oil paintings are available exclusively at Darrell Bell Gallery in Saskatoon. For a limited time several of my large oil paintings are also available at
their new street front gallery on 21st Street (formally Lifestyles By Darrell Bell Gallery).

Ongoing: a selection of my larger work is available at The Black Spruce Gallery at Northside on Highway 2 just before the turn to Christopher Lake.

Monday, October 31, 2016

Soft Touch

Soft Touch
6 x 6"
oil on board
© Nicki Ault, 2016
 sold

A little change of pace with this one. Soft, faded blonde grasses swayed in the wind at this particular patch on Bridget's acreage and the bare branches had clusters of dark purple berries on them. It was a calmer location compared to areas where some of the more vibrant Autumn leaves could be found.

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Flitter

Flitter
6 x 6"
oil on board
© Nicki Ault, 2016
available

I can't get enough of playing with this series! I love the simplicity of this one. It is a bit more paired down than some of the others. I have also done four 8 x 8's for Darrell Bell Gallery which I will deliver once they are dry. Next up are three larger boards which I bought and prepped yesterday. Later today I hope to get to the studio to start working on them. I hope you will keep checking back to see where this leads!

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Fall Embrace

Fall Embrace
6 x 6"
oil on board
© Nicki Ault, 2016
 sold

​I am so excited about this new series. I am gathering more ideas with each one. Hope you enjoy!

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Open Studio 2016


In exactly one month it will be that time of year again... our Studio On 20th Open Studio Show and Sale. Mark your calendars, it is going to be a good one! These women are pounding out some great work! It is so inspiring to work amongst them, to see the creativity and passion that they bring to their work and to feed off that energy. I am lucky!

Event details...
Who: eleven Saskatoon artists... Bridget Aitken, Nicki Ault, Kathy Bradshaw, Jan Corcoran, Ann, Donald, Jane Harington, Miranda Jones, Brenda Kennedy, Karen Maguire, Amira Wasfy, Carol Wylie
What: show and sale of most recent work
Where: Studio On 20th, 236A 20th Street W, Saskatoon (between Aves B and C), upstairs
When: Sunday, November 27 from 11-5
Why: for the love of art and in support of those who make it

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Flutter By

Flutter By
16 x 16"
oil on cradled panel
© Nicki Ault, 2016
sold

This one started off really experimental; there are lots of layers and marks and building up of colour to get to this result. I like it, I am happy with it, but there is a part of me that feels like it didn't end up in the place I thought it was going to go at the outset. That's okay, I learned a few things and now I will continue the idea to the next piece. Keep on swimmin'!

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Little Stand Of Birch

Little Stand Of Birch
6 x 6"
oil on board
© Nicki Ault, 2016
 sold

Lots to choose from on Bridget's acreage... this particular patch of land had a lovely stand of bare Birch trees with bright, autumn coloured foliage scattered at their base.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Soft Prairie Days

Soft Prairie Days
6 x 6"
oil on board
© Nicki Ault, 2016
available

I was at the studio on Sunday afternoon while my son was at football practice. I had just enough time to experiment on another small board, but when it was time to clean my brushes I looked objectively at my results and the reality of what had materialized did not match the vision in my mind. What I envisioned was another fun, flirty, dancy autumn scene; what I got was a piece o' _____ (fill in the blank). I left the studio thinking that maybe I would feel differently when I saw it with fresh eyes the next morning.

Nope. 

What I realized, however, was that the whole thing was perhaps not utter garbage. I liked the top half, it was the bottom half that didn't work. At. All. This is where a highly useful painting technique comes in handy: The Wipe. I took my lint-free rag and went to town on the lower portion of the board. It looked better immediately! I reworked things and now the painting seems cohesive and like the parts belong together. I am happy with what has turned out to be a soft, calm prairie scene.

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Dance With Me

Dance With Me
6 x 6"
oil on board
© Nicki Ault, 2016
sold

There is a little more green in this fall scene than in the others I have recently posted. This particular area on Bridget's (my studio mate's) property had clusters of little low-laying junipers strewn about. The green was a nice foil to the rusty reds and warm oranges dancing around the stark twigs and branches.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Rustle

Rustle
6 x 6"
oil on board
© Nicki Ault, 2016
sold

I had time to get to the studio for a couple of hours or so yesterday. I was terribly exhausted, but all of that was soon forgotten as I delved into another small exploration of fall colour and foliage. While I painted this I kept imagining the gentle prairie winds rustling the autumn leaves and making the colours dance. My plan is to spend the day today at the studio working on a larger version of these recent studies. Time to play!

Friday, October 7, 2016

Distant River

Distant River
6 x 6"
oil on board
© Nicki Ault, 2016
sold

My painting dreams are made of elements of this little autumn series I have recently posted. I want to go big with these ideas but I am scared I will get bogged down in the detail; in a scene like this there is A LOT of detail. It's funny how I feel loose and free on a small scale, but feel restricted on a larger surface. You would think the opposite would be true.

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Hidden Juniper

Hidden Juniper
6 x 6"
oil on board
© Nicki Ault, 2016
 sold

I love the fluttery, dancy feel of the Autumn-coloured leaves that remain on the branches at this time of year. Not much green to be seen, aside from the sweet, low-laying juniper hiding among the twigs and foliage.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Fall Tangle

Fall Tangle
6 x 6"
oil on board
© Nicki Ault, 2016

A day at the studio was just what the doctor ordered. 

I worked out some ideas on my little 6x6's, all the while thinking about how I would tackle a similar subject on a larger scale. I have had something on the tip of my tongue for about three years now; something I want to say with paint but I just haven't been able to get there. I am not sure what the block is or why I am having such difficulty. I guess, if I were honest with myself, fear has something to do with it. 

After spending time at Bridget's acreage on Monday things came into clearer focus and I got back in touch with this idea that has been brewing for these last few years. Ultimately it is the feeling I have when I am out in the natural landscape that I want to express on canvas. Although I have done this to an extent in my past paintings, I have not managed to push myself as far as I truly want to go with it. I think I become too distracted by the subject that I forget about the more abstract idea of the feeling

Today was a good start to moving paint around again and loosely using my photos as reference to create studies for some new ideas.

Monday, October 3, 2016

Another Sound Bite!

Bridget's Lane
photo © Nicki Ault, 2016

Why am I still up at 11:30 at night sipping wine, eating left-over pizza and listening to iTunes? Because I feel better, that's why!

I just spent the last week flat out in bed with a brutal cold/flu/sinus thing. The week I thought was going to be spent at the studio after a long summer hiatus did not materialize. I did not get much farther than my dark bedroom and a cold cloth on my eyes for about five straight days. NyQuil and I are now on a first name basis.

But that was then, this is now. 

Today, finally feeling more human, I decided to jump-start my week, so I drove out to the country, destination: Bridget's acreage. On the way I saw hundreds of cranes in the fields along Valley Road.

photo © Nicki Ault, 2016

It was a gray morning, but the warm fall colours popped against that backdrop. The twenty-five minute drive was stretched a bit with all my photo stops, but when I got there Bridget and her menagerie welcomed me with open arms. I spent the next few hours enjoying the scenery and her company.

When I decided to venture out Bridget stayed back at the homestead while I wandered and took photos. She had warm tea and conversation waiting for me when I returned. Please enjoy a small collection of the pictures I took on my solitary hike which invigorated all my senses; the smell of sage and wild juniper was the perfect medicine as were her trusty companions, George and Pepper, who joined me for part of my walk.

the homestead
photo © Nicki Ault, 2016

a spot of vibrant colour
photo © Nicki Ault, 2016

from the height of land
photo © Nicki Ault. 2016

fall colour
photo © Nicki Ault, 2016

George and Pepper
photo © Nicki Ault, 2016

the lookout
photo © Nicki Ault, 2016

And lastly, as we chatted and drank tea with horses as the backdrop...

 backyard horses
photo © Nicki Ault, 2016

Today life was good.

And tomorrow I will paint.

Sweet dreams!