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Marion in her own words

With the soul of an artist, I am inspired by the interplay of light, shadow, colours, shapes, and textures that are either in nature or created by man. I appreciate the freedom and spontaneity of expression using a variety of media and enjoy sharing ideas and techniques that encourage others to find their artistic voice.


Teaching is a passion. I have been working with learners of all ages for my entire career. I find it so rewarding when I can guide others to experience the joy of mark making or capturing an image that expresses their unique vision, style, and creativity.


Having travelled to more than 45 countries on five continents, I am influenced by the work of artisans around the globe. I have a deep appreciation for their work and am drawn to their use of patterns, designs, and colours. Whether it’s the Azulejo tiles in Portugal, rustic clay pottery in Mexico, intricate designs on plates in Morocco, the swish of a brush loaded with black ink in Japan, silk weaving in Thailand, the symmetry of wooden masks in Africa, the happy patterns on the Dala horses of Sweden, or the repetition of colourful woodblock patterns on textiles in India, I am in awe of the beauty and artistic expression. The treasures from my travels bring back rich memories and thoughts that generate ideas for my own art work.


Natural beauty by the sea, a mountain vista, or deep in a forest, inspire me with the every-changing hues and tonal ranges. The images of sparkling white layers of glaciers in the Chilean Fjords, brilliant blues and greens of the Atlantic coast in Portugal, ochre and oranges of the leaves in autumn, pristine white sand beaches in the Falkland Islands, golden glow of sunlight on Tuscan hills, and the markings on wildlife in Africa, never leave me.


I have explored and experimented with a variety of art mediums since I was in my 20’s.  I’ve studied linocut printmaking and created four-colour reductions of my drawings. I’ve worked with clay and designed low vessels for Ikebana flower arranging. When I lived and worked in Bangkok, I took Chinese brush painting lessons from Julia Ying Chen and learned to paint bamboo and plum blossoms. I first started in oils in the early 90's and then went on to learn watercolour painting at Kwantlen University Continuing Studies in Surrey.  Over the years, I have taken art classes that have encouraged me to try a variety of styles of painting. I took a week of plein air art lessons from Carole Orr at Old School House Art Centre in Qualicum, a series of watercolour lessons with Linda Muttitt, Fort Langley, and Suzanne Northcott, SFCA, Fort Langley. I have studied acrylic painting with Julian Hyzler in Tuscany, mixed media with Heather Taylor in Cascais, Portugal, and more recently, sketching with pen and ink and watercolour with Victor Melo in Azenhas do Mar, Portugal. I never stop learning and continue to enjoy art demonstrations in Vancouver and the Lower Mainland.


Photography and painting explorations go hand in hand for me. I am passionate about it as it satisfies a deep desire to express myself in ways that words cannot. Creating art fills me up, fuels my soul and makes me desire even more.


Photography gives me the chance to take a moment in time and keep it still for all time, to be pondered and reflected upon, to stir my senses, and to shape a story of an experience. I am an international award-winning photographer. Some of my photography as well as watercolours and acrylic paintings have homes in Canada, Australia, Portugal, Italy, USA, and France. I have studied photography while on a safari in Kenya with David Rogers, (a National Geographic contributor,) Julian Hyzler in Morocco, Peter Evans in France, and Jose Antunes in Portugal. I have taken the judging course with the Canadian Association of Photographic Arts and have judged at competitions in the Lower Mainland. I also give presentations on a variety of topics to camera clubs.


I've taught photography for several years and, from 2014 to 2021, offered photography tours and workshops in Portugal and Vancouver with my colleague, Fernando Picarra.


I am passionate about teaching and love helping others “see” with new eyes and capture images either in photography or in paintings that make their heart sing. I am a member of the Arts Council of Surrey, Langley Arts Council and the Fort Langley Artists Group.

Currently, my artistic expression includes intuitive, spontaneous abstract impressions in acrylic, watercolour, pen and ink on paper and canvas, as well as mixed media pieces. I enjoy mark making with everything from brushes and found objects with paint to oil pastels, Posca Pens, markers, and charcoal.


I moved to Fort Langley after living in a small village near Sintra, Portugal for three years. I enjoy teaching a variety of art and photography workshops in Langley and surrounding area.

Marion McCristall Tuscan Farm Gardens.jpg
Field of Poppies.jpg
Impressions of Portuguese Fish.jpg
Blue Lagoon.jpg
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