An oil painting by local art teacher Linda Scott-Harris was selected as a finalist from more than 4,300 entries in a recent international art competition.

“A dog named Oozie” is among the finalists in the “Animals” category on the Art Renewal Centre’s (ARC’s) website, where the general public can now vote for any of the finalists for the People’s Choice Award.

The competition results were made public and went live on the ARC website on July 1. Until July 8, friends, family, fans and patrons can visit the website to vote for their favourite work. Visitors to the ARC website are able to vote for up to 10 of their favorite finalist or winning works. The winner will receive $1,000 cash, special recognition on the 14th ARC Salon Results pages on the ARC website, and a full page in the ARC Salon Catalog to be published by ACC Art Books. Visit the People’s Choice Award section on the ARC Salon results pages and click on the vote button below the works of your choice to cast your votes. Visitors will be prompted to login or create a free account so that organizers can track votes and prevent users from voting more than once. The winner will be revealed on July 12th, 2019. You can view the finalists and vote here.

Local art teacher Linda Scott-Harris is known for her passion about the style of painting called realism. While she encourages her students to find their own style, she believes that the best foundation for new artists is to focus on realism, in tandem with the basics of art.

Learning from master works, created by artists who themselves were taught by masters, makes sense to Scott-Harris, but she loves painting in that style because, she says, it is a challenge to capture the reality of a subject.

“It’s not about creating a photographic image — this is taking pigment and oil and adding painterly qualities to the work. There are many challenges,” says Scott-Harris, who is also a professional photographer.

How real can I make it? That is the question that is in Scott-Harris’ mind as she paints. She says that she has been drawing since she was very young and that drawing skills are important. But she hates to hear people turn away from learning how to paint because they think they cannot draw. In a way, painting is drawing, she says – by putting the brush strokes in the right place.

Scott-Harris teaches from her Hawkesbury studio, but is always at work on her own paintings, too and also restores and repairs paintings.

It’s interesting to note that even while the Art Renewal Centre (ARC) promotes and works to revive and celebrate the centuries-old realist style, it hosts an online art competition and works to make art accessible to all.

To find out more about classes or Linda Scott-Harris, visit her website.