Discovering the art of Kathryn Beals, Small Business Partner of Leave No Trace. [Submitted by Kathryn Beals.]
Background: I grew up in a small fishing town on the northwest coast of British Columbia. As a kid, my parents took me camping frequently and taught me to love the outdoors. I met my husband Travis ten years ago and we moved to California in 2003. We are both long time promoters of Leave No Trace ethics and have lead backpacking trips in the Sierras and Rockies. In 2008, we hiked the West Coast Trail of Vancouver Island and the high Sierra section of the PCT. The places we see on our treks provide the inspiration for my paintings.
What is your motto? I don't have a motto, but I always strive to communicate my love of the backcountry in my work. In my paintings, I try to balance the look of a favorite place with the feeling of being there. Tents are a focal point in many of my paintings because I want to give the viewer an emotional and symbolic connection to the landscape. As an artist specializing in commissioned paintings, I try to get a sense of the story behind each photograph so I can help people capture the memory of special places.
What does your company do for the environment? I select eco-friendly materials and methods in all aspects of my business. I paint with acrylic paints, which do not require the use of toxic solvents, as oil paints do. I use sustainable packaging materials whenever possible when shipping my paintings. My art cards are printed on 100% recycled paper with vegetable inks.
What does your company do for the community? I donate spare art supplies to local public schools, and I donate paintings and gift certificates to local animal shelters. I also run an art technique blog, howipaint.com, featuring some of my current paintings in progress with advice and instructional videos for beginners. I am a self-taught artist and I hope to inspire and encourage people of all ages to learn to paint.
Why does your company partner with Leave No Trace? (Why we love you.) It is a privilege to work with Leave No Trace, since I have long supported their approach to wilderness preservation through access and education. I donate 10% of profits from my card sales to Leave No Trace. I hope that my paintings can inspire people to visit the backcountry and have the experiences that have taught my me why Leave No Trace ethics are so important. Having grown up camping, my husband and I are glad to say that trails are cleaner now than we remember as kids. We believe that Leave No Trace is responsible for this improvement and we want to do our part to help.
To learn more about Kathryn Beals, you can visit any of her websites:
Landscapes: www.kathrynbeals.com <http://www.kathrynbeals.com>
Art Blog: www.howipaint.com <http://www.howipaint.com>
To learn more about Small Business Partnerships, please visit us online: http://lnt.org/support/small_business.php