Category Archives: Art

Fine art by Deborah Robinson



Once, I borrowed bones from someone I knew, whose husband was a polar bear biologist. I was living in the Arctic at the time. We met at her house for tea, as I was considering buying her piano. Spotting them, I asked if I could borrow the bones, as I wanted to paint them.

She said to me, “What colour would you paint them?” I laughed and said I wouldn’t be painting the actual bones. I wanted to use them as a reference. So she thought that was fine then.

They came home with me to live in my studio for a while. There was a polar bear skull and a muskox skull. And a couple of other things, I don’t recall what they were now. I did end up buying her piano too.

Here are some of the resulting drawings following my tea visit with a friend. I did these studies years ago showing line, form, shadow, light and sometimes colour. Mostly pen & ink, with a watercolour wash, a polar bear skull, muskox, and I can’t remember what else.

bones drawing
skull drawingSkull drawingSkull 2 drawing

Bones Drawing

Georgia O’Keefe worked with the primary forms of nature, focusing on shape and colour, and painted bones. That’s where I got the idea to use the skulls as subjects. An admirer of hers ever since my early painting days, I even went to Ghost Ranch, where she lived and painted. I also painted frequently here, though much later. Here I am en plein air in the desert.

Painting at Ghost Ranch














All of this started during one cold winter in Yellowknife, when I stumbled upon the book, “Portrait of an Artist“. It was her biography, and I read it with great enthusiasm. I was transfixed with her, even though, as yet, I had not seen her artwork.

Since this was before the home computer, I did a lot of digging to find her work, and since have collected several of her books and books about her. That led me to my first of many trips to New Mexico. This was eventually thanks to an ad in the back of American Artist magazine. The Southwest is definitely my spiritual home.

Promise of Spring

Promise of Spring

This painting I have titled Promise of Spring. The river starts to open up, and the days are longer amid the persistent chill in the air. I think of the song, Spring Can Really Hang You Up The Most.  I am in my cocoon, recharging like a phone. promise of spring painting Scroll down to see my recent mono-prints. Not all is new, I have unfinished paintings that have been taking ever so long to complete. I think this one is done, Promise of Spring, Acrylic on gallery wrap canvas, sides painted, no need to frame, 16 x 20. My style is changing somewhat, while in this transition period, I have noticed the old tries to hang on and the new struggles to break through. When this happens, as always, it is time to trust the process. Reevaluating and regrouping are where my focus at the moment. Getting down to the core of things, back to my true essence, I will hang on to it this time. A progressed version of myself is likely to emerge, as many things have been incubating. So many distractions along the way can bury one’s voice.

Listen to the Heart

Finding my way back to hearing my own heart, I require plenty of solitude. Before that, I was experiencing too much interference in my field. My attention span isn’t what it used to be. A significant observation is that the environment we choose to be in influences our lives. Ideally, I can block out the noise; at least, I thought I could. These last two years have been a healing journey after leaving an environment that was detrimental to me. And yet, I chose to be there, so I take the lessons learned in stride. It was unfortunate because I loved my space. That lesson has been learned more than once.

Creative Process

  To restart my creative process, I have made a daily habit of sketching and have been experimenting with some gelli prints. Sometimes, when in turmoil, my art can only incubate and production slows down. Trying something different is an excellent way to inspire ourselves, find another point of view and freshen our creativity. The process of creation is ever-fluid, and results are unpredictable. Doing prints is unexpected; not all turnout, yet many pleasant surprises exist. Nevertheless, I feel a release, even if the results are not usable. One thing leads to another; I strive to spend every moment creating something new. It is a form of therapy for me. Before I know it, my creative juices start to flow, and I am in the zone.

In Real Life

Realization of life comes through creative expression. Oscar Wilde was right in his 1889 essay The Decay of Lying, when he said, “Life imitates Art far more than Art imitates Life”. Art is the catalyst for a life well lived. Whether you are the artist, the art or the audience, you are part of the process.  So what are you creating? Dig deep and make it real.

January 2017 Daily Paintings

January Daily Paintings

I am doing the daily paintings. The goal was to paint 5 days a week, for one month, but didn’t make it through January.  I will do them when I can, since I have obtained a mural project.

The daily paintings are on hold when I am busy with murals or commissions. These paintings are great collector items making make wonderful gifts. If you do not see a sold sign, then the painting is still available.

You are sure to find one you like! These are available in my Small Works Gallery now that the promotion is over.

painting 6
This painting is of the Three Sisters in Canmore, Alberta. One of the many faces of this famous mountain formation.

daily painting Bowness Lagoon
The Bowness Lagoon, before the flood. I think these canoes are still available to rent for a paddle around the lagoon since the overhaul of the park.

I saw this view of Kananaskis on one of my drives out to the mountains. The immense beauty is challenging to record in a tiny painting.

daily painting
The trees at Edworthy Park have always been striking to me. They hold such a large presence in their neat rows.

daily painting 2
I love the aspens in early summer with their yellowish green leaves. Fresh, like saplings, filling me with renewed spirit.

daily painting
Elbow River Falls is a short drive from the city. The unique rock formations with waterfalls and trees make it an outdoor paradise.



The first thing I ever bought with my allowance was a brownie box camera for one dollar & five cents. Fascination with photography has remained with me. I travel everywhere with my camera. Taking pictures is a way for me to get out walking and to free my soul in nature. I have been taking photographs long before digital technology.

Why I love it

Taking photographs really trains the eye and helps one to inherently know what is the difference between a good photo and a bad one, as it relates to composition, lighting and more. I have used it as a composition tool for my painting. I have thousands of photos, and this is merely a small selection of a few of my favourites.

See more of my photos on I am on Flickr

More info

All the photos on this site were taken by me &  are copyright, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Permission is required to use in any way.  Prints can be purchased by request. Check my Shop for Photo Prints

Small Works

Small Works Miniature Art

Miniatures … are a precious slice of life you can hold in your hand.

Small works and miniature art collection. These pieces are a small slice of life, precious pieces to be cherished. Miniature art has long been a collector’s item. Some of these smaller paintings take just as long as the large ones to create. I enjoy working on small pieces. The ones on board come with frames, and vary depending on suitability.

Miniature art is generally classified as anything under 25 square inches and frequently the scale is 1/6 of the regular size, although rules vary, depending on whom you talk to. All pieces here are smaller than twenty-five square inches. I am a member of the Association of Miniature Artists [AMA].
Scroll down to see the miniature archives.

From the archives:

Paper Works

Paper Works

Drawings, charcoal, pencil, graphite, pastels, watercolour, ink, art journals

I have kept art journals & journals for as long as I can remember. In looking back through them, I find some of the whimsical stuff is interesting. Sipping coffee & jotting down ideas and sketches while I have my morning coffee has been a ritual, one that I need to revive. My kitchen table has often been a temporary studio, where I have done some experimenting. Sometimes my art has been known to take over the entire space and in speaking with other artists, I can also say I am not alone there. I have always been an incurable doodler.


Paper works capture some of the artist’s raw authenticity. The quickness of sketching, the rustle of paper, pencils and small paintbrushes rattling, and the portability are what I enjoy. I am known to travel with drawing materials in my bag. I enjoy the fluidity of watercolour and ink. Pastels are fun to work in, more non-committal than a canvas, but the results are colourful and appear like a painting. Employing the use of charcoal and Conte crayons, I have traditionally used when doing figure drawing, sometimes incorporating pastels for added colour.

Portraits and more

The portraits were done some time ago, and I am getting an urge to do portraits again. The skull works were inspired by Georgia O’Keefe, and these skulls are all polar animals, from my time in the Arctic. I spent a great deal of time in New Mexico, where O’Keefe lived. The Rio Grande Gorge is a stunning landmark which has been painted countless times. You will find a variety of perspectives on that subject here.

If you see something you like, ask about a print. I can make select images available as small prints and art cards. When I have them ready, you will find them on my SHOP PAGE.

Art Archives

Art Archives

Early works, and sold works by Deborah Robinson Artist, and some may be available as prints. Please ask.

Important Because

I have included my archives, as it helps me to keep track, but also it is a way to see my progression from my early beginnings. It is fun to look back at my earlier works, and I hope you will enjoy them too. There are larger sizes, as well as miniature works. The photos of the miniatures are much larger than the actual original piece, so you can see the detail. To view my miniature works on their own, please check this page.

Available Art

Available Art

Hand painted with top quality materials. Thank you for supporting the arts! Browse the available art I have for sale.

Buy fine art direct from the artist, Deborah Robinson.  Contact me if you are interested in a piece. Let’s have a chat, so I can answer any of your questions.


can also provide you with a three-month payment plan, so a deposit will hold your purchase. Framing is not included unless specified. If you do not see something you like, keep in mind I also do custom art and commissions as well as large scale murals. Check out my mural page for some samples HERE.

All transactions, credit cards are processed through PayPal. I will invoice you. You do not need to have a PayPal account. Shipping is extra. Local buyers are eligible for pickup or delivery and may also pay with VISA, MASTERCARD without going through PayPal. EMAIL TRANSFER is available to ALL Canadian buyers. Once payment has cleared, the item will be carefully packaged and shipped within 2-3 business days.

Artist Statement

Artist Statement

A self representing artist, I enjoy creating art that encompasses a wide variety of subjects. I have been working on a number of spiritual art paintings inspired by dreams and my own spiritual experiences.

I strive to create art which is a blend of realistic and magical. My art is a blend of realistic, and magical, exploring the emotion & spiritual of nature and the human condition in my painting. My focus includes landscapes, flowers, macro floral, figures and nature scenes in oils, acrylics and watercolour.

Inspiration is found in the simplest of things, a raindrop on a window, a certain glow of light, reflections & shadows. The metamorphosis never ends, as things continue to expand offering more clarity, I simplify, embellish and let the creative flow through me.

Creativity, no matter what form, is a path from the soul, and I have found that one area of expression feeds another. Raw talent, in itself, is just that. That is why I have spent years honing the craft, to achieve the desired outcome.

I am especially fascinated by colour and how it relates to sound and form. Learning to see, translating what the mind’s eye sees to brush & canvas, is a rewarding challenge.

Being in the moment of creation, the excitement I feel, as a piece nears completion, is the ultimate experience. The learning process never ends. Being an artist means a lifetime of observation and recreating little bits and pieces in my art practise and sharing them with you.

I would like to know that I have touched people somehow, through my art, and personally.

My artwork can be found in Canada, USA, Mexico, England, Europe, and the Caribbean. I reside in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

Art Events

Art Events

Upcoming Exhibitions

Stay Tuned for More Exhibitions & Events

Obviously COVID has impacted in person showings. You can make an appointment to view my art in person.
Subscribe to my newsletter to keep up to date on the latest art events and exhibition news.

Past Events

LUX, show and sale Friday, February, 2-28, 2018
Caprices Fine Arts at Fort Calgary
Caprice’s Fine Art Summer Event
Saturday June 14, 2014 10-5pm
Inglewood Community Hall.
Art for display & sale


Art Lessons

Art Lessons: Learn to draw and paint.

art lessons
I offer art lessons for children and adults alike in Calgary, Alberta.

Subscribe for information on upcoming workshops & camps.

Have you ever said. “I cannot draw!”? I can tell you it is because no one has ever showed you how. Like anything else, creating art takes practice to produce results. Learn basic drawing concepts and the elements of design, including composition, perspective and colour theory.  Many of my students are in amazement at what they are able to create. I look forward to sharing my knowledge with you.

As an art educator, I can teach one on one personal art instruction, group classes or workshops. Art camps for children is something I am in the process of setting up and these will be available during spring and summer breaks. Locations will be announced, as I will pick a place that is suitable for the number of people involved.

best art teacherMy specialty for group art lessons are ages 8 to 12. Classes for teens and youth, ages 13 through 17 are arranged. I also enjoy teaching adults. If you want to create a community mural project, I can facilitate that while engaging the members of your community. Let me know what your group interest is, and we can set something up.

I am continuously developing new curriculum to share with my students. Drawing, painting, pastels, charcoal, life drawing, plein air painting is some of the techniques we will explore in your art lessons. We will study the elements of design, colour theory, line, form, perspective, proportion, and various materials. We will discuss techniques of famous artists and will emulate some of those in our own work.

I am happy to take on groups of special interest. If you have a group who would like to learn something in particular, please contact me, and I will be happy to gear classes or a workshop in your area to your needs. Location will decided, depending on demand.