Fran Bailey with a copy of her book Paintings by Fran Bailey and one of her most recent works.

A life in pictures; Fran Bailey publishes retrospective of her paintings

Anyone wanting a glimpse into artist Fran Bailey’s past need only buy her new book to view and read about many of the memorable moments in her life. The book titled, Paintings by Fran Bailey, has 26 full colour images and traces Bailey’s development as an artist over four decades, working in oils and watercolour. It will be launched on Sunday March 22, with several of the paintings in the book on display and for sale, along with other newer works.

“In those four decades, I created hundreds of paintings, most of which sold at galleries or by commission,” Bailey says. ”Yet I still have a number of my own works. Time for a retrospective!”

The book was suggested and designed by Bailey’s son, Jon Joanis , an artist himself. It contains paintings of her childhood home, her home on the west coast, and her special love of nature, as well as her forays into abstract art.

Bailey wrote the text that accompanies the paintings in the book, giving them deeper meaning. A whimsical touch is a small motif, taken from one of the paintings, which changes slightly on each page, turning the book into a flip book.

A lifelong learning curve

Bailey is largely a self-taught artist who has learned from other artists, joining groups and exhibiting. A key mentor was Lesley Coppold RCA who taught the Artistes Hudson Artists group in Hudson, where Bailey lived for more than 20 years. Her works have been featured in galleries in the Montreal-Ottawa area and on Vancouver Island.

Originally trained as a teacher, Bailey worked for seven years as a grade school teacher and 12 years as a supply teacher. “I introduced art into every subject I taught, including math,” she says. She now offers classes in watercolours in Vankleek Hill, where she lives.

If you would like to attend the launch of Paintings by Fran Bailey on Sunday March 22, from 4 to 6 pm, or if you are interested in watercolour classes, please contact [email protected]. The book is priced at $20 and Bailey will be on hand at the launch to sign copies. The book is also available at The Review offices and at Centre Décor in Hudson.

Fran Bailey with a copy of her book Paintings by Fran Bailey and one of her most recent works.



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Bonnie Laing

Bonnie Laing is the author of four produced plays, the novel, River Reel, and the short story collection Marble Season. Her short fiction has been published in many Canadian literary magazines.Numerous humorous and non-fiction articles have been published in the Globe & Mail, Ottawa Citizen, Toronto Life and Toronto Star. She has also published two local histories and is the former Coordinator of the Creative Writing Program at Ryerson University.

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