UNITY — Saskatchewan hosts a multitude of artists, some well-known as Joe Fafard, or some known only to their own community.
Faye McCubbing has loved art since she was a small child. Her artwork, in varying forms, represents hundreds of hours of experimenting with texture, colour or what she is painting or drawing on. You might say there may have been some failures in addition to successes with her work.
Whether fuelled by self-doubt, self-motivation, or the desire to express herself through art, McCubbing has spent a lifetime creating masterpieces. If you have ever seen her work or purchased a piece of her work, you are viewing or buying a piece of her heart and supporting something she has been passionate about all of her life.
“I was drawing before the power came to our family farm, seven miles north of Unity in the Blue Bell school district,” she tells the Unity-Wilkie Press-Herald and SASKTODAY.ca,
“I can still remember my parents, Freda, and Elmer Kelly, reminding me to blow out the lamp at bedtime.
“I was so fortunate to have the lifestyle I had, a simpler time, the natural world and work ethic.”
McCubbing said her first piece of artwork was two stallions fighting amongst a herd which she drew when she was 17. It was this piece that made her apply to the Alberta College of Art and Design in Calgary for a two-year diploma course in commercial art.
“I enjoyed the challenge of the creating a mural of Duperow curling rink, recalling from memory, and once finished, on display at our local curling rink. A then and now idea. It depicts a typical 1940s rink, where a small community, which we were part of came together, producing world-class curlers and memories.”
McCubbing says her stylization is her signature. A mural she created named “Nature’s Plight” provides a visual, ecological and social commentary on the effect we are having on our world, a two-year project, inspired by the disappearances of species, culture and lifestyles for Earth Day April 22, 1989.
“My life has been more about self-expression always looking for a meaningful way to do that. I’ve done commissioned pieces and signs, hosted how-to-draw classes, pottery, jewelery, rock art and how to make paper as well as welding. However, I was always drawn back to paper, pen, and an idea. I shall keep evolving as a creative person because creativity is ageless until the light is finally out.”
McCubbing said Unity is her hometown and she is a third-generation member of her family here. She is very proud that one of her grandchildren has carried on the world of art.
“She did always share her artistic skills with myself and my sister when we were kids,” granddaughter Halee Galipeau says.
“She always had us working on some kind of a craft with her, but I'm the only one that has pursued it.”
Inspired by grandma’s work and perhaps even having inherited some of her talents Galipeau says she has always been good with a pencil and paper, however, when she was in school for a Bachelor of Applied Arts in visual communications, she discovered she was also a strong painter.
Galipeau now works as a senior brand designer with a marketing company in Saskatoon and does freelance commission paintings on the side.