I love how one kind act can lead to another. A friend kindly shared a story on FaceBook about a woman who is helping the animals suffering from the devastating wild fires in Australia. I clicked on the link and was so touched by what I read.
Artist, Sandee Ewasiuk is selling prints of her gorgeous paintings to raise funds to help the Australian animals. So far she has created two lovely pieces of artwork. One of a mother kangaroo and her joey, and another of an adorable koala. The originals are painted on 3 x 5 foot canvas. She is selling prints in a variety of sizes, as well as the original pieces of art. Sandee donates all the proceeds (less the cost of shipping and printing) to charities such as WIRES, who are rescuing the unfathomable number of animals injured from the fires.
This initiative to help animals with her art, seems like it was inevitable from the start. As a child growing up in St. Catharines, Ontario, animals and art were always a part of her life. Sandee credits her father for inspiring her love of animals. She remembers him as a huge animal lover. He often raised waterfowl in order to help bring up their population. Once the birds were old enough, he would release them into the wild.
It was Sandee’s mom who knew she was destined to be an artist when she discovered Sandee had ‘decorated’ the kitchen cupboards with indelible marker.
Sandee pursued her passion for art at the Fine Arts program at Niagara College and then at the Ontario College of Art & Design. She now shares her love of art as an instructor at the Dundas Valley School of Art and The Art Gallery of Burlington.
Though Sandee has always loved animals, it was a recent trip to Australia that spurred her desire to do all she could to help the animals. She and her husband, who is originally from Australia, travelled throughout the country from September to November 2019. As they began their trip, there were fires, but nothing that seemed out of the ordinary. However, as they neared their departure date to leave Australia and return to Canada, it quickly became evident that there was nothing ordinary about these brush fires—these were catastrophic.
Sandee describes Australia as being so full of wildlife. In fact, while she and her husband were camping, she found herself within ten feet of a kangaroo and her joey (the inspiration for her painting). Being so close to these amazing animals, Sandee felt like she had entered a ‘magical world’.
When she came back and saw the devastation of the country she had just left, she knew she had to do something to help. She told a friend of wanting to help by selling her paintings, but didn’t know how to advertise her idea. Her friend told her just to start and the rest would happen. Sandee started and the rest did happen.
An online article was written about her in CBC Hamilton, which garnered a lot of positive responses from all over Canada and the United States.
To date, Sandee has raised over $6,000 to help the animals in Australia. She even has another painting planned—A Kookaburra!
When asked the one thing she would change in the world if she could, Sandee’s answer, “For people to be more thoughtful about the future. For people to think—what can I do now to change the future for the better.”
If you would like to support Sandee and her efforts to help the animals in Australia, please contact her either by FB or her email.
FaceBook: Sandee Ewasiuk