I am from Skidegate, Haida Gwaii and of full Haida descent, now living in Campbell River on Vancouver Island.
By trade, Norma is a bookkeeper and has worked in small businesses and larger accounting offices. One day, her husband pushed her to take a class in watercolour and bought her an easel. That's when she started to explore her abilities and realized how much she loved it.
I have never looked back. I later started painting with acrylics. I remember when I was very young I would draw and loved to do paint-by-number. That interest was always there but I was never in touch with it. It is wonderful to have found it now.
Norma doesn't paint in one particular style, she paints what moves her. It could be birds, people, scenery, or something that represents her Haida heritage.
It is such a great feeling to step back and look at a particular painting that has come from what I envisioned in my mind. The reaction of people to a painting moves me to push myself to pull even deeper out of myself. I am always surprised how I have been able to pull this out of myself, I didn’t realize that this was in me.
My brother has been a Haida artist since he was very young. And my father was a very accomplished carver. I have been surrounded by artists all my life. They have been part of the influence in my decision to express myself through painting.