Mindy Lighthipe


Nature is a complex series of connections. Plants, animals, and insects coexist on earth with very special relationships. Photography can capture a beautiful moment in time but not a life time of moments. My paintings are created over time as it involves different stages of life that weave a story onto paper. I tell stories of these connections.

My inspiration is sparked by seeing some kind of behavior or symbiotic relationship with one species to another. Once my curiosity is peaked I want to learn more. I often grow plants and raise insects so that I can witness first hand the unique relationship between them. It can take months or even years as lifecycles are cyclical and I often wait until the next cycle emerges.

I travel to locations where I work with rescue and animal rehabilitation centers to tell the stories of the animals they care for. For me, it is up close and personal. With species becoming endangered or on the brink of extinction I want to educate people of how special and unique nature is. I do this through my art.

I document my findings through sketches, color notes, journaling, and taking digital reference photos. I create a compilation of the potential elements I want to include in my paintings and work out my compositions. This process is the most time consuming as I want to make sure I am anatomically correct in proportion, scale and content. It is said, “A picture is worth a thousand words.” I have a lot to say.

I love working in traditional art mediums and combining them in contemporary ways. Once my composition is completed, I search for the medium(s) which best convey my message. I often experiment with combinations using watercolor, gouache, colored pencil, ink, pastel and printmaking techniques.

I admit I am a color junkie and love to work with bold color and subject matter. I am always fascinated by the color, textures and patterns found in nature. This fascination comes from a child-like wonder I have for nature. I want to capture the moment of excitement and discovery as I am drawing the beauty of nature!