Shelley Mitchell worked as an architectural draftsperson for many years before returning to the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, where she earned her bachelor's degree in painting and art history. Since then she has shown professionally in both group and solo exhibitions in Nova Scotia, Ontario, and Maine. Her work is represented in the Canadiana Fund State Art Collection in Ottawa, as well as many private and corporate collections in Canada, the United States, and Germany, and displayed at galleries such as Amicus Gallery in Chester and Argyle Fine Art Gallery in Halifax.
Shelley was recently featured in From Land and Sea: Nova Scotia's Contemporary Landscape Artists by Dee Appleby and produced by Nimbus Publishing.
"The physical presence of Atlantic Canada, with its ever-changing atmosphere and diversity of land and sea and shore, moves me to paint continuously. Each part of the day and every change in the weather give me inspiration. I have painted all my life and will continue because I want to share the serenity and peace that I find in these places. I try to express that moment of tranquility or excitement in each painting so that it becomes part of the viewer’s experience. Sometimes the key to the idea is not in the overall composition, but in a detail of the work. For example, a particular boat is not important, but the surface of the water upon which it rests is critical. Which tree is chosen does not matter, but the quality of the air around it does. I discovered as a child the wonderful fluid medium of oil paint and have never found a more satisfying material to use, although I enjoy working with oil pastels on occasion and the immediacy of watercolour is useful for sketching. I feel grateful every day to be a part of the continuing dialogue of art."
- Shelley Mitchell