Kevin Bolstad says painting is “just a part of who he is.” Now, he’s hosting his first solo exhibit on Saturday, November 28 from 9am until 4:30pm at Yellowknife’s Explorer Hotel.
Bolstad told Cabin Radio he enjoys returning to the same places for inspiration. “There’s always something new to see, whether it’s seasonal, different lighting – something captures you differently,” he said.
“I think it keeps me connected with the land and our space in the world, and painting is the way that makes sense to me to try to ground that and capture it.”
Bolstad has been painting since he received his first oil paints in 1975.
He previously lived in the Yukon but now primarily paints scenes from around Yellowknife.
An engineer who hasn’t shown his work publicly for more than four years, Bolstad has produced a show – entitled Under Northern Skies – that features landscapes in oil, acrylic, and watercolour.
“I often use my camera for reference material, but it’s more trying to capture old feelings or memories,” he said.
“Some of them might be an assembled, rearranged landscape from what was really out there, and you may not be able to actually go find the spot that inspired the picture.”
As he moves closer to retirement from his day job, Bolstad hopes painting can become a “retirement vocation.”
“I don’t plan to earn a full living off it at this point in my life, but I continue to enjoy it and hopefully continue to share it with other people,” he said.
Bolstad’s work will be available for purchase at the exhibit, which is open to the public. Covid-19 protocols will be in place.