Representation: I am honoured to have my work represented by these well-respected professional galleries:
Darrell Bell Gallery in the Canada Building, downtown Saskatoon
Assiniboia Gallery in Regina, 2266 Smith Street
Webster Galleries in Calgary, Unit 2 625-77th Ave. SE

Summer Location: I am happy to announce that my art is available once again at Evrgreen Coffee and Food in Waskesiu for the summer season.

March 21, 2019: I was interviewed by Galleries West Magazine. Read the article here.

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

Sunday, December 31, 2017

A Place of Peace

A Place of Peace
10 x 8"
oil on cradled panel
© Nicki Ault, 2017
sold
(commission)

There have been two hundred posts in 2017 and now we are at the last before we ring in 2018. Here are just a handful of the amazing highlights of what was an incredible year:

1) After many conversations through emails and phone calls, this past summer I finally met in person the lovely couple from Portland, Oregon who commissioned me to paint a vast evening sky for them. Getting to know them and the reason behind why they wanted me to do this painting shifted my entire mindset on being a landscape painter. I am forever grateful that they shared their personal story with me. I actually believe through this experience a new friendship was born.

2) The true love of another beautiful couple came knocking on my door and asked me to do a huge painting for them... a challenge for sure- the largest canvas I have ever attempted (40x60) and a subject with which I was not that comfortable (a road). Their confidence in me helped to build my confidence in me, something that has not been my strong suit. Their kindness, patience, enthusiasm, generosity and, most of all, their love story made the experience one I will never forget.

3) The family of a dear, dear friend of twenty-five years asked me to create a painting for her to help celebrate a milestone birthday. The tears she shed when she received her painting touched me deeply.

4) A woman I had never met before came to the Open Studio in November and we had a lovely chat about art and her career before she retired from teaching. She was quite interested in one of my large paintings, but had never invested in art before, so she had to really think about it and wrote down the dimensions before she left. Later that afternoon she returned, which was overwhelming in itself because that meant she fought through the worst traffic day of the year to get to the studio for a second time! She had gone home to measure and take a photo of where she would hang the painting- she wanted my opinion. I honestly believed it was a perfect spot. She went on to tell me that she wanted to do something special with this money; apparently it was a small inheritance she had recently received. She said there was one other time she had received a bit of money and it disappeared into groceries and bills. She didn't want that to happen this time. By the end of her story I was in tears and felt honoured that she chose my art to as a remembrance of this person.

5) This fall I received an email from a well-known artist, which was a delight in itself, asking me if I would create a small painting of a scene in northern Saskatchewan. It was to be a gift for a very ill friend who could no longer travel to his beloved cabin in La Ronge. We met at my studio where this artist showed me some of his lake inspired photos and I showed him a few from my canoeing and painting trip (2013) to La Ronge. He was excited about my Jack Pine photo and my ideas for it as a painting, so that became the plan for the commission. This story brings me to today's image, "A Place of Peace", which is the painting I created with this loving friendship and a very ill man in mind. I hope this scene provides hope, beauty, memories and peace as he finds strength to fight his battle. I hope the day will come when he is able to return to the place he loves in northern Saskatchewan once again.

As you can see, the highlights of my year are not about numbers or sales or galleries or art shows or the yurt retreat or even my favourite paintings. Those things certainly made 2017 awesome, but the actual highlights, when I really think back on this year, come down to the connections I made with humans through my art. It comes down to my deeper understanding of how art touches people and how art can affect actual lives. 

The highlights of my year are the stories that I was invited to be a part of, through my art. 

Thank you!

Saturday, December 30, 2017

Saskatoon Sunset, December 16, 2017

Saskatoon Sunset, December 16, 2017
8 x 8"
oil on cradled panel
© Nicki Ault, 2017
sold at Darrell Bell Gallery

Merry belated Christmas!!! I have been resting and hunkered down trying to get through this unbelievable cold snap we are going through. Saskatchewan is half-way through a two week long Polar Vortex.

As I write this the Weather Network has Saskatoon in an "Extreme Cold Warning". We are sitting at -35 Degrees Celcius which they say with the wind, feels like -45. It was colder than that through the night, somewhere around -50. Brrr.

It seemed apropos that I post the one wintry scene I have painted so far this year which was delivered to Darrell Bell Gallery right before Christmas. I was on my way to the studio at about 5:00 p.m. on December 16th when the beauty of the setting sun beyond the river stopped me in my tracks. I immediately took a detour to grab some photos and then worked on this scene as soon as I arrived at the studio about a half hour later. The reflection in the unfrozen half of the river was clear and striking; it was fun to try to get it down in paint.

Saturday, December 23, 2017

The Road To Rain

The Road To Rain
8 x 8"
oil on cradled panel
© Nicki Ault, 2017
sold at Darrell Bell Gallery

A moody prairie scene. When you look at this painting do you feel like the road is leading you to the storm, or do you feel like it is helping you escape? It's kind of a scenario like "is the glass half full or half empty".

Friday, December 22, 2017

Phthalo Storm

Phthalo Storm
8 x 8"
oil on cradled panel
© Nicki Ault, 2017
sold at Darrell Bell Gallery

This painting took a bit of a turn. I recently bought a new tube of Phthalo Blue which was a different brand than the one I had before. The colour was a bit of a shock, very unlike the one I had just squeezed dry. As a result the painting I planned changed and I improvised by blending in a few other blues to tame down that crazy phthalo! It is one intense colour!

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Expressive Sky

Expressive Sky
8 x 8"
oil on cradled panel
© Nicki Ault, 2017
sold at Darrell Bell Gallery

Moody blues with uplifting energy; this painting is a bit of a visual oxymoron.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Main Beach Solitude, Waskesiu

Main Beach Solitude, Waskesiu
8 x 8"
oil on cradled panel
© Nicki Ault, 2017
sold at Darrell Bell Gallery

It's not often you can catch a completely quiet moment at the Main Beach in Waskesiu: no one in the water or on the bike path or making sand castles on the beach. The question is: did I find the beach in this state on this particular evening, or did I use some artistic license to edit these things out?

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Stars Descending

Stars Descending
8 x 8"
oil on cradled panel
© Nicki Ault, 2017
available at Darrell Bell Gallery

As the darkness of night slowly settles in, the stars descend, offering hope for a new day.

Monday, December 18, 2017

My Prairie Dreams

My Prairie Dreams
8 x 8"
oil on cradled panel
© Nicki Ault, 2017
sold at Darrell Bell Gallery

I delivered eight new 8x8 oil paintings to Darrell Bell Gallery on Friday. Two were sold the day before via text messages and photos. I adore this particular landscape, especially the weird dark sky at the top.
What I crazy time this has been. I went through a lot of paperwork this weekend and it looks like I have delivered sixty-one 8x8's since the end of July!!! On the flip-side, when I look at the activity from the first half of the year with the 8x8's, it was very slow. I am not sure to what I can attribute this upswing, but I will continue to enjoy it while it lasts.

Friday, December 15, 2017

Dusk Arriving

Dusk Arriving
10 x 10"
oil on cradled panel
© Nicki Ault, 2017
sold at Assiniboia Gallery

There is a bit of a glow by the clouds in the upper left hand corner where the sun is trying to burn through. It is not apparent enough in this photo.

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Nightfall

Nightfall
10 x 10"
oil on cradled panel
© Nicki Ault, 2017
available at Assiniboia Gallery

These sunset experimentations have been a favourite part of my year. I have thoroughly enjoyed exploring them as a subject. I see the future and it includes more reflections.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Boreal Flare

Boreal Flare
10 x 10"
oil on cradled panel
© Nicki Ault, 2017
sold at Assiniboia Gallery

A hillside forest scene: the sun slips toward the horizon beyond the hill creating an intense glow that burns between the trees.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Evening Harmony

Evening Harmony
10 x 10"
oil on cradled panel
© Nicki Ault, 2017
sold at Assiniboia Gallery

Blues and oranges, purples and yellows... a little sunset harmonizing on this particular summer's evening.

Monday, December 11, 2017

Shady Spot

Shady Spot
10 x 10"
oil on cradled panel
© Nicki Ault, 2017
sold at Assiniboia Gallery 

A bit of an unusual composition, but I like it. I kind of feel like there should be a cow or horse standing in the shade of the trees.

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Night Light

Night Light
10 x 10"
oil on cradled panel
© Nicki Ault, 2017
sold at Assiniboia Gallery

I am seriously crazy about this painting. I loooooove the colours of the sunset and water. I adore how the light bends around the pine tree. Although they look black in the photo, the trees are deep, dark blues and purples. I hope I don't regret that I didn't keep this one for myself.

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Uphill

Uphill
10 x 10"
oil on cradled panel
© Nicki Ault, 2017
sold at Assiniboia Gallery

I took a lot of resource photos on this particular glorious, sunny, canola-filled day in July. We were on the way home from the lake, my kids were plugged into their devices and when I saw something especially interesting, I locked the brakes up a few times saying, "Hey, guys, I'm just going to take a quick drive down this road to get some pictures, okay?" 

It turns out my idea of "quick" is a bit different than theirs. Let's just say I took a bit of flack for how not quick they thought I was going!

Friday, December 8, 2017

Northern Marsh in September

Northern Marsh in September
10 x 10"
oil on cradled panel
© Nicki Ault, 2017
sold at Assiniboia Gallery

I think the feeling of the bright, crisp fall day came through loud and clear in this painting. The final touch of the gentle, horizontal strokes on the water added the element that took it from feeling flat to having dimension and movement, as subtle as it is.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Late Afternoon Bales

Late Afternoon Bales
8 x 8"
oil on cradled panel
© Nicki Ault, 2017
sold at Darrell Bell Gallery

This is the last one remaining of the six new 8x8's I delivered to Darrell Bell Gallery on December 1. Gotta fire up the brushes again!

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Strange and Beautiful

Strange and Beautiful
10 x 10"
oil on cradled panel
© Nicki Ault, 2017
sold at Assiniboia Gallery

This is one of the eight new 10 x 10" that is now available at Assiniboia Gallery in Regina - just picked up by the owners on Friday. They have been such a treat to work with; I am so excited about this new relationship!

I love this little painting... I find the cloud formation to be strange and beautiful. The sun is creating a powerful impact as it begins its slow decent toward the horizon, making parts of the cloud glow and come alive while other parts become dark and flat. Just a few waves are catching the light, but soon the whole surface of the lake will shimmer with the sun setting. I like drama in my art, not in my life.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Rustle

Rustle
40 x 30"
acrylic and oil on canvas
© Nicki Ault, 2017
available

I'm still loving these fluttery, leafy paintings. It is similar to "Dancing With Myself", although this one has some earthy greens in it. I actually have a new one started on my easel right now... a bit more zoomed in and a different palette. Stay tuned for that.

I can't believe this painting was done in October and I am just posting it now! Yeesh! What a crazy time. I literally have thirty-three blog posts drafted and ready to post. That means there are thirty-three paintings I haven't shown yet! Some are sold some aren't. I've never been in this boat before, so I'm going to just keep paddling and moving forward. Maybe someday I will be caught up!

Monday, December 4, 2017

East End, King's Island - Painting Makeover

East End, King's Island, Waskesiu
(after)
12 x 12"
oil on cradled panel
© Nicki Ault, 2017
sold at Darrell Bell Gallery

Guess what?! 

I took the weekend off! I didn't go back to the studio once this weekend after I left on Friday afternoon. Well, I realize looking back that I spent about five hours at home on Sunday editing photos, doing paperwork, organizing files, recording receipts, emailing and the like, so technically I didn't take the weekend off, but compared to the last four months, it felt like it.

Anyhoo, here is a recent "Painting Makeover" on a painting from a year ago. Not gigantic changes, but I believe the revisions make it a better painting. One thing I think adds a lot is the reflection of the rocks in the water. I lightened up the sky and changed the colour of the distant horizon. Among the other changes, I am now much happier with this painting. It feels fresh and sunny- like a beautiful day to be out in the boat and exploring the island. I hope someone who loves Waskesiu Lake, finds this at the "Holiday Salon" where it is hanging and available at Darrell Bell Gallery. King's Island is the only island on Waskesiu Lake and is named for Mackenzie King who was the Canadian Prime Minister who established Prince Albert National Park in 1927.

East End, King's Island
(before)
12 x 12"
oil on cradled panel, 2016
© Nicki Ault, 2017

I "googled" King's Island and have learned that it was originally known in the area as Devil's Island because according to Cree legend was inhabited by supernatural creatures! I had never heard that before, but now I want to know more! Also, I have always called it King's Island, but it seems it is actually King Island with no " 's".


Friday, December 1, 2017

Dimming of the Day

Dimming of the Day
8 x 8"
oil on cradled panel
© Nicki Ault, 2017
sold at Darrell Bell Gallery

There's something a little different about this one. I think it has a cool feel to it. Check it out tonight at the opening reception for the "Holiday Salon" at Darrell Bell Gallery. Between 5:00 and 8:00 pm, I will be there enjoying the couple of hundred pieces of original art by some of the fantastic DBG gallery artists, so please swing by and join me!