Jan Walker – artist, farmer, fly fisher, writer, coyote chaser, chicken wrangler, kayaker, lover of the river.
Let me tell you more . . .
Art has always been a passion! in 1994, I saw a magazine article featuring marquetry. Those were “pre-internet” days for me. It was difficult to find any information – marquetry seemed to be a lost art. I sent for a kit and booklet from England., a coastal scene created by Ernie Ives. Learning marquetry on my own was a very slow, painful process. By 2004, I had become proficient and decided that the rest of the world didn’t need to put in the hours of suffering that I had. With the help of Calgary’s SKB Videography, I produced the beginners DVD, Jan Walker’s Introduction to Marquetry. In the jam-packed 100 minutes of video, I teach the knife cutting method. The DVD is for absolute beginners and takes you right through to the glue up process. I do beginner workshops in Southern Alberta.
My newest passion is East Coast style rug hooking. Born of necessity, Canadians used burlap feed sacks and tore old wool clothes into strips to create warm, handmade rugs for their homes. Today, I use beautiful linen as a backing and hand dyed wool fabric with bold, luscious colour. I also re-purpose old wool clothing – a hot wash and dry felt the fabrics and the garment gets a second life. I create my own designs and do workshops in Southern Alberta.
Summers are extraordinary here! I love to spend time in my garden and out on the land. My two summer favourites are kayaking and fishing. There are a number of small lakes and rivers in the area and they attract the water lovers in the area.
Late summer is time to purchase chicks for the farm. We raise our birds in a Humane Indoor environment and try to provide as natural a diet as possible. Lots of fresh air, sunshine (through the windows), green hay to pick through, corn, wheat and old produce from local grocery stores. The result is the tastiest chicken you’ll ever eat!
The rest of the farm includes Black Angus cows and next year, maybe some outdoor pigs.
The Life of an Artist
My first marquetry from an English kit. The shore scene didn’t have any birds, so I added my own.
This hand hooked rug combined my love of fishing with creating art. The rug is titled Fish Stream and is made of hand dyed yarns and a re-purposed cashmere suit jacket.
Being retired gives me lots of time to purse my passions of kayaking and fishing.