Lynn Cantin Born in a small northern Quebec town, I began painting with acrylics at the age of 14. After graduating in fashion design in Montreal in 1984, my husband and I started our own firm and raised our family. It is only after many years that I returned to my other passion of painting. As a fashion designer for womenswear for 32 years, I always being pushed to create the perfect design, it has compelled me to hyper focus on the female body and all its beauty that comes with it. I have mastered their shapes and their various silhouettes to develop the perfect fit for a women’s garment. During my career I was blessed to be able to travel the world extensively to India, Europe and all over Asia and thus has enable me to connect with different cultures and meeting women from all over the globe and hearing their stories. Creating the perfect, structured well achieved garment is satisfying, but I always felt there was something missing in what I was creating, something more elevated. I found it through painting. Artists create works of art that compels viewers’ eyes to be drawn by the beauty, colors and strong brush strokes, but they also create a treasure that cannot be seen, emotions. So, through my art I wanted to draw attention to women’s beauty focusing on them to celebrate feminine fashion and their allure, but also to visually express this emotion of the societal pressure’s women face. As a woman myself, I face the everyday challenges that this comes with, and so do the women all around me. Often, I focus closely on the eyes, to highlight that our eyes are the windows to our soul. Initially when I started painting on large-sized canvases my colour palette was a photo-realistic mix of black, white and neutrals. I have since begun to use more color, sometimes moving towards hyper-realism to drive home a point about emotions or society’s attitudes. My painting techniques are evolving as well, with greater use of dry brush, metallic in the color mix, and splatter technique. Without reinventing painting, itself, my approach is focused on my passion of showing the stories that each women project through their physical emotion. One reason I continue to paint women exclusively is that it brings dimension and an intellectual component to my work as a fashion designer. Fashion is about the way a woman looks. But painting can be about how a woman feels: innocent, arrogant, broken, pensive and the challenge they face. It is on this concept that I am able to provide not only a sparkling canvas, but a canvas that enhances the emotions of hope for all women. It is my way to speak up for all of us.