Prince Edward County painter Pamela Carter found the opportunity to support frontline workers as soon as the pandemic started.
“I decided that I would like to make a contribution to the hospital where all these people were working night and day, and to the support workers in the hospital as well,” she said.
“So that’s when I decided to do my first fundraiser which was very successful,” Carter said. “I just had a lot of small paintings in the fundraiser and people were very happy to jump in and make a contribution to the hospital.”
She, who has been painting for 30 years and has lived in Prince Edward County for 12 years, says having access to the best possible medical care is vital.
“We all need a very good hospital,” Carter said. “And in the County, we’re moving toward building a new hospital.”
She said it’s a huge undertaking and the hospital needs as much support as possible.
Carter said prior to creating her studio, which is attached to her house, she worked as a high school art teacher in Montreal and Toronto.
She has also held multiple workshops pre-COVID.
“I love demystifying the whole process for people who are very anxious or very nervous, they don’t know how to start,” Carter said. “I like to show them that it’s not a big complicated thing. I really enjoy helping people learn.”
The range of her works is broad, from still life, landscapes to portraitures and large-scale abstracts, all of which can be purchased on her website.
She said she feels lucky to be doing what she truly loves and being passionate about work is an integral part of any artist.
“It took many years to get to this point, but I was always aiming in this direction,” Carter said. “I’m happiest when I’m in [the studio] here.”
Despite having an extensive professional background, Carter is constantly working on improving her skills and evolving her techniques.
“I never feel like I’m at the point where I’ve got it all figured out,” she said. “I’m always learning.”
Carter said participating in large exhibitions always brings her immense joy.
“It was a dream of mine once I started working in abstract art,” she said. “And that’s what I did in Toronto for two years.”
All major exhibitions have now been canceled because of the pandemic but Carter said COVID doesn’t impact her motivation to paint.
“I’m constantly taking pictures, and I’m constantly seeing things I want to paint. I have no lack of inspiration,” she said. “I always have music playing when I’m working, so it contributes a lot.”
Carter is now planning to do another fundraiser in the spring, and has already started to make paintings for it.
“Everyone in the county should try and find a way to help,” she said. “So there are many other causes as well, that we could support.”
Shannon Coull, an executive director at Prince Edward County Memorial Hospital Foundation, is grateful for Carter’s support.
“It is hard for charities to fundraise in the COVID environment so having donors who come up with creative initiatives, like Pamela has done, is so very important,” she said.
Not only is Carter giving back to her community and ensuring healthcare delivery in the county continues, but she is also creating hope, Coull said.
“Her paintings are colourful and inspiring,” she said. “They allow us to imagine and remember times of socializing and celebrating in a carefree environment. Something we all hope to experience again soon.”