Painter Bev Byerley on creativity

The west coast land­scape is the cre­at­ive in­spir­a­tion for most of Bev Byerley’s paintings. 

As a writer, cre­ativ­ity in­trigues me. Why do we seek it? How do we find it? 

While I con­tin­ue to ex­plore the concept in my per­son­al and pro­fes­sion­al life, I’m also curi­ous about how people in oth­er fields of artist­ic en­deavor, find their muse. Painter Bev Byerley was kind enough to share her thoughts below. 

First of all, I take pho­tos of my fa­vor­ite places. Usually it’s just a few in­ter­est­ing lines I see in these pho­tos that sparks my cre­at­ive interest.

Then I sketch the bare bones, em­phas­iz­ing the lines that I find in­triguing, with a paint brush and dark col­oured paint. After the ini­tial sketch I’m full of artist­ic ex­cite­ment and be­gin to block in col­ours and cov­er the canvas.

It’s usu­ally about this time that I real­ize just how much work it’s go­ing to take to pro­duce the im­age I have in my head. My en­ergy level wanes and I have to push my­self to keep going.

But when I do, there comes the point that I can see the fin­ish line and the ini­tial spark re­turns with all the en­ergy and en­thu­si­asm to com­plete the piece.

For me, paint­ing is like walk­ing a long dis­tance; pla­cing one foot in front of an­oth­er, and an­oth­er, and another…

Then sud­denly you’re there.

To view more of Bev’s work, vis­it www​.bevby​er​ley​.com. 


The Cougar wins gold!

I’d for­got­ten about the Foreword Review’s IndieFab Nature Book of the Year nom­in­a­tion so was caught totally off guard when The Cougar re­ceived the gold award!

As al­ways, I’m so grate­ful for the sup­port and great work  done by my pub­lish­er, Douglas & McIntyre and to all the people who so gen­er­ously con­trib­uted their know­ledge, ex­per­i­ences and pho­to­graphs. The book would­n’t ex­ist without them.

Renee Andor wrote a great art­icle about The Cougar’s win in the Comox Valley Record.


Cougars in urban areas

It’s un­be­liev­able how stealthy and quiet cou­gars are. And how of­ten they can be near hu­mans – on trails or even in urb­an areas – without any­one noticing.

Visit here to view im­ages and a video clip of a cou­gar cas­u­ally strolling the streets of a res­id­en­tial area in south­ern California.

As well as be­ing si­lent, cou­gars can re­main still for hours. Scroll down to the third and fourth pho­tos at this site to see the spot where the cou­gar known as 46m hid on a busy street in the San Francisco Bay area for six hours. Despite hun­dreds of people walk­ing, bik­ing and driv­ing by, no one knew a cou­gar was in the bushes un­til 46m de­cided to make a run for it.

And it doesn’t only hap­pen in California. In 1992, a four-year old, 60 kilo­gram cou­gar was tran­quil­ized and re­moved from the un­der­ground park­ing gar­age of the Empress Hotel in down­town Victoria, BC.

hidden cougarThis photo by Jessie Dickson shows just how well a cou­gar can blend in.