While the weather turns cold to welcome another winter season in Sault Ste. Marie, 30 people attended Mane Street Salon and Spa on Wednesday night to work alongside talented local artist and entrepreneur, Tamarack Zeppa. A graduate of OCAD in Toronto, and prolific in the art scene across multiple mediums, Zeppa has built her reputation not only on her talent, but also on making art accessible to all.
“Any mistake you can make more than once in art, is a technique. It could even be your own artistic style.” said Zeppa of her techniques in leading her classes. “Some of my best students have been those who say this about their artistic abilities ‘I can’t even draw a stick figure'”
Wednesday’s featured piece, an ambitious painting from the Group of Seven, particularly for one leading a large group through it, did not appear to daunt this natural instructor. She circulated the room, advising, supporting and affirming all. Her warmth and humour quickly calmed nerves as some expressed fears around what they perceived to be their lack of talent. Tamarack was able to lead the participants through the painting, to the ultimate conclusion.
“Every class, about halfway through I feel so proud of my attendees (or students). I like to take time to help each artist overcome challenges they encounter. We are all too often taught in life that things need to be “perfect” in order to be acceptable or successful. In my classes I encourage each participant to indulge their inherent “artist” and try to send them away with a piece that is inspired by our featured piece, but with the individual’s own flair and tendencies. With art we can find peace and self counsel. It is empowering to realize an outlet through which to find oneself or to work ones way through life’s hardships. If we put our emotions truly onto a canvas, our burdens are less to carry. Let the canvas help to carry them.”
This gifted instructor is popular in her nights of paint, offering events at public venues as well in houses for private parties. Her work can also be seen seasonally in the windows of local establishments. Tamarack has found art to be a language for her, something that allows her to communicate with the world and to express herself. She found the spark within her at an early age.
“For me art, in all of it’s diverse disciplines, has always come naturally to me. People would ask, “how did you do that?”, and at a fairly young age I would have to say that I just didn’t know. It’s always been in me. My years at Ontario College of Art and Design helped to hone my pre-existing tendencies. Art for me is self counsel, a way to find one’s self and to heal. To share the philosophy that things within art do not have to be “perfect” as with most other academic subjects is important to me to pass on. In fact, it is in the journey a of a person’s pencil marking or brush stroke, how ever hap hazard, that the real artist in them is developed.”
The engaging and enigmatic artist is currently working with several local businesses, designing displays and them painting them on windows to capture not only the business’ essence but also to recreate it through the joy of the season.
To book a night of paint or have your business’ window painted for the holidays contact Tamarack directly at [email protected].