St. George’s resident develops a love for watercolour painting

Christopher Vaughan
Published on February 4, 2014

The walls of June Tulk’s home in St. George’s are lined with many pieces of artwork.

She’s collected some during her world travels, while others are more personal, such as the paintings done by her mother Hazel.

“My mother painted different things, such as landscapes and fruit studies,” she said. “She was always very artistic. In fact, she was a concert pianist.”

Ms. Tulk’s father George also had a creative side, developing a gearless shift while working for the Ford Motor Company in the United States, although she noted her father didn’t receive proper credit for his invention.

Her parents’ creativity must have rubbed off on their daughter, as Ms. Tulk started developing her artistic skills at an early age.

“I’ve been painting ever since I can remember. Something about it just appeals to me,” she said.

One of her favourite pieces depicts a figure sitting on a railing near a body of water with waves crashing nearby. The piece was inspired by “The Little Prince,” the famous French novel by Antoine de Saint-Exupery.

“I love that book. The prince visited everywhere else during his travels, so I thought he should visit the sea,” said Ms. Tulk.

While she’s done many oil paintings over the years, including a landscape that won her an award in the United States, she recently began watercolour classes with local artist Judy Cantwell.

“I took up watercolours because it’s easy to take when you’re travelling somewhere – and it’s a lot easier to clean up than oils,” said Ms. Tulk.

Ms. Cantwell had high praise for Ms. Tulk’s work that was submitted for the Bay St. George Artists’ Association’s recent Christmas exhibition at Stephenville Arts and Culture Centre.

“She’s really very talented,” said Ms. Cantwell.

It’s not only at home or local shows where one can find Ms. Tulk’s paintings. She admits to giving away some of her best pieces to admirers of her work, and she’s also painted for friends and family.

“June did a painting depicting a house being towed on the water from Flat Island, Bonavista Bay, to the mainland that I gave to my husband because that’s where he’s from,” said friend Goldie Hallett.

“She did another one for me depicting my grandfather’s house on Sandy Point, which I absolutely love.”