“Helen McNicoll, a Canadian artist well known for her outstanding sunny Impressionist landscape paintings, inspired me to interact with my memories through art. The first time I discovered her art, I was amazed by her use of colour to create a quiet ambiance that invited me to engage with the paintings through more than just visual senses. The subtle expressions in her brush strokes bring back my vague nostalgic memories associated with wildlife. The depiction of nature and the subjects tell stories; instead of just viewing, it encourages me to imagine the scenery. I painted my mother and myself walking in Stanley Park because it is still one of my favourite memories. I wanted to cherish the moment by creating it in a painting in McNicoll’s style, allowing me to invite anyone who views it to engage with the artwork, just like how McNicoll’s work inspired me.”
—Chaelyn Han (Grade 9, Lord Byng Secondary School, Vancouver, British Columbia)
One of the nation’s most prolific female artists, Helen McNicoll (1879–1915) garnered acclaim for her bright and sunny representations of rural landscapes, child subjects, and modern female figures—works that helped to popularize Impressionism in Canada.