On the northern fringes of the Great Plains Grasslands natural region in Alberta Canada, lives artist Colin Starkevich in his rural Alberta home where he strives to portray the beauty of the Canadian Grasslands region in his artwork. After a 3 day trip to the Alberta Grasslands in 2009, when Colin was 19, he fell in love with the region and knew then that he would spend much of his life painting this place and its wild inhabitants. This has turned into what has now become The Grassland Series.
Since learning how to start painting in high school when Colin was 16, he has grown his artistic practice to an outstanding level and has some tremendous achievements to date. When Colin just turned 21 years old he attended a prestigious Master Artists Seminar taught by world renowned wildlife artist, Robert Bateman, who personally invited Colin to attend. At 23 Colin’s painting “Grassland Harmonies” was selected a finalist in the 2013 The Artist’s Magazines, annual international art competition, competing in the professional division. Awarded artist's residence at the Wallace Stegner House in Eastend, Saskatchewan for the month of June 2015 is one of Colin's most memorable awards. Colin's largest artistic achievement to date was when he had one of his life dreams come true, a solo exhibition at the Royal Alberta Museum in Edmonton, Alberta. The exhibition took place during the spring and summer of 2015 when Colin was just 25 years old. The exhibition was shown as a one man show in the Museums large, 2500 square foot, Feature Exhibitions Gallery space.
Colin has been awarded signature membership of the highly ranked and international, Artists For Conservation foundation (AFC) in 2017. The AFC represents the world's leading collective of artists focused on nature and wildlife. Colin has exhibited with the AFC every year since earning signature membership in the AFC’s annual international juried exhibition– which is one of the largest conservation themed exhibits in the world. Colin is also a juried professional member of the International Guild of Realism (IGOR), a collective of some of the world’s top realist artists today. Colin is also a juried Active Member with the Federation of Canadian Artists (FCA), and has exhibited in numerous juried exhibitions with the FCA recently which are held at the Federation Gallery in Vancouver, Canada.
Colin’s goal with The Grassland Series is to raise the awareness of the beauty of this fragile ecosystem while supporting conservation efforts within this region. Most importantly to Colin, his biggest goal with this growing series, is to inspire people of all ages globally to search within themselves to discover their deepest passions and unique abilities, and to put the two together to make a positive difference in the world around them in a way that is very unique.
Apart from his artwork Colin holds a BSc majoring in Environmental Sciences and a diploma in Wildlife & Fisheries Conservation, Colin feels that his educational path has taught him an extreme amount about the wildlife he paints and the ecosystems in which they live. He now feels a lot more confident in his artwork as he can depict his subject matter much more accurately from a realist's perspective.
Recently, in 2020 Colin took part in the Canadian Wildlife Federations Canadian Conservation Corps (CCC) program. A 3 stage program designed for young people aged 18-30 that kicks off with a wilderness adventure and engages its participants in conservation work all over the country while gaining leadership and outdoor skills. The cohort Colin was part of started out with a wilderness adventure in Canada’s Algonquin Park. Colin then went off to spend a few weeks assisting in conservation work in Newfoundland which was a big change from the Grasslands region he is familiar with.
As an artist who always continues to push the boundaries with his artwork, Colin feels he can make his largest contribution to our society and the conservation of our natural world in his life through his artwork as he feels his artwork is his unique gift and intends to continue to develop and use it to the best of his ability.
“We all are capable of doing great things for this world in numerous ways, it is up to us to discover our strengths and develop them to make a positive difference in a way that is very unique and special”
To see more of Colin's work depicting other Canadian wildlife please visit www.colinstarkevich.com .