Shaney Watters always felt foreign…born into the wrong family, moved to a foreign land to grow up, then returned to the US for her senior year of high school. Art-making helped Shaney navigate her tumultuous upbringing. She eventually found like-minded community in her college Fine Arts department, but ended up pursuing a Masters Degree in Psychology, with continued studies in post-graduate Art Therapy.
After a number of years of setting aside her creative endeavors to pursue her career as a Marriage Family Therapist, she ultimately came to understand that an important part of her was missing, so she ultimately made a comeback to art – her soul’s purpose. In 2011, she signed up for an adult painting studio and never looked back.
Says Shaney, „I find being a painter allows me to reflect on and find delight in all the messy beauty I experience in life all around and within me.“
Influenced by nature, in particular her reverence for the animal kingdom, Shaney is inspired to create delight-filled abstract-realism animal portraits. As a mixed media painter, she is unable to imagine declaring loyalty to just one medium. Within the layers of her paintings one can spy graphite, acrylics, 18k gold leaf, colored pencil, and oil paint, all topped with cold wax. All these layers and materials really echo all the disparate experiences of life that come together to make one whole.
Through personification of her animal subjects, Shaney captures the raw and honest depiction of human emotions. She hopes to inspire connection with emotions and experiences while remaining playful, and at the same time illuminating the indisputable bonds we have with animals.
Shaney lives with her partner of 20+ years, James, and the love of 4 good-ish dogs. Most recently her household increased again with the addition of her amazing teenage niece, Oonah.