ARTIST Christine Provard
My Spiritual Director asked me this question.
“When do you experience your pure joy?” I replied, “When I am painting”. This was a wonderful and defining question.
I am the 2nd oldest in a family of 6 growing up along the shores of Lake Erie, Ohio. I have loved the water since I can remember. My earliest dreams were to become a nurse and I retired as one after a fulfilling 45 year career. To balance the intensity of my vocation, my creative outlet was painting, ceramics, sewing, fashioning collages and experimenting with anything I could get my hands on.
My love of watercolor began in the 1990s with a group of women buying a small palette and painting outside. We didn’t even realize it had the name of “Plein Air”. Since then, I have carried my paints and art journal in my travels to all parts of the world.
My only daughter, Sarah, was tragically killed while vacationing in Italy with her husband in 2007. She
was 28 years old. I had been working as a Team Leader in Hospice at the time. This type of work not
only helps people transition at end of life, but also brings fullness to their journey in many ways. I found
myself searching for reasons to live as I was single at the time. As I took time to grieve and to seriously
consider next steps for my life, God brought a wonderful man, Rick, to walk alongside me after my being single for over 14 years.
In 2012, Rick and I went on a weekend Spiritual Retreat. My Spiritual Director asked me this question.
“When do you experience your pure joy?” I replied, “When I am painting”. This was a wonderful and
Rick recognized my love for watercolor and encouraged me to begin taking lessons from an Ohio
Watercolorist, Barney Cole. Barney was such an inspiration to me in my journey and helped me to dig in and go forward. I have also taken many workshops in these years as well. For my 60 th birthday, Rick built
me a studio on our property overlooking Lake Erie. In 2018 we decided to take an adventure to North
Carolina. We fell in love with this area and moved here shortly thereafter. Since I’m happiest at the water’s edge, I especially love painting there. I find my peace and joy in connection with the water and shore. I have a quote that says, ‘where sea meets soul’, and that sums up the heart of my art as well. Rick also takes an active role in my work by matting and framing my
work. I’m excited to have my work shown here at the Artworks Oriental. My art is also in the Community
Artist Gallery and Studios and the Craven County Bank of the Arts in New Bern, as well as the Core
Sound Waterfowl Museum in Morehead City and Harker’s Island. It is also a privilege to have my art in
many private collections.