Location: Sandy Hook

Coloured Pencil Artist Terry Mellway Delights in the Details

Coloured Pencil Artist Terry Mellway Delights in the Details


“I would never believe that “Threesome” wasn’t a photograph! Ditto the others. I’m enriched by discovering your art.” This comment from an admirer is just one of many that one will find describing the art work of coloured pencil artist Terry Mellway, and it pretty much sums up the marvel of her detailed drawings. Having got a glimpse of Terry’s pieces online we were excited to meet with her and find out how she can create such realistic drawings using coloured pencils. We caught up with Terry in Winnipeg, Manitoba just as she and her husband Chris were in the middle of moving to Sandy Hook. There were boxes everywhere, but Terry left her studio intact to accommodate us for her interview.


Terry’s life has always been exposed to creativity of one kind or another; her mother’s own artistic endeavours setting the example for her at a young age. And despite her art work being sidelined for many years while raising a large family, that early encouragement spawned a lifetime passion for creating art. It was then, about fifteen years ago, at her husband’s urging to resume that passion that she reignited the flame of creativity and hasn’t looked back. Terry admits that back then at the start of her career it was hard to imagine herself as a full-time artist, let alone considering that people would buy her work. For us, as we look through the portfolio of work she has done and learn of the many hours she has put in to developing her skills (as little as 4 hours per day!), it would be difficult to imagine otherwise.



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Perusing Terry’s website gallery we found that the realism of her pieces evokes more than just appreciation for her skill, they can also ignite the senses and bring out reactions, emotions or curiosity. Many of her pieces will make you smile, such as the beaming face of her granddaughter Grace, the comical parrots of “Birds of a Feather” in their splendorous colours, or her work “Found My Marbles” which brought me back to when I was a child playing marbles with the other kids; our holes in the ground permanent fixtures of the neighbourhood landscape. Staring into the eyes of her tiger piece “Sheba” may give you goose bumps, and a glance at one of her flowers may recall the memory of its fragrance.



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A wonderful story that Terry related to us was when she went to Jamaica for a visit and photographed a man who became the subject for her W. Cliff Packer Memorial Award winning piece, “Jamaican.” This local man that carved and painted coconuts for sale at a roadside stand in Ocho Rios, Jamaica exuded such character that Terry asked if she could photograph him. He agreed, and so back home she then chronicled the 150 hours of process from photograph to the coloured pencil drawing you see below. The submission of her piece to Colored Pencil magazine also led to a four page article in the May 2014 issue. Terry sent the man in Jamaica a copy of the magazine who was very thrilled and who happily exclaimed in the very unmistakable Jamaican accent, “Now I’m faymoos”.



Enjoy our interview with Terry and we encourage you to share her work on social media and email. If you have a nice comment for Terry and her art work you can submit it below.