Our Team

Pastel Artists.CA has a team of dedicated volunteers from across Canada.  Get to know our directors and the rest of our team

Joan Larson


President; Director 

Joan’s original passion for horses led to her interest in art and she has never stopped to look back.

Joan has an extensive CV chronicling 30 years of professional achievements which include international shows, awards and documentaries. However, it is the present and future that hold her attention. Her recent groundbreaking series of artworks honouring the RCMP Musical Ride has been used for exhibitions supporting non-profit organizations. This was followed by a series based on her trips to remote and restricted Sable Island to paint its most famous denizens, the wild horses.

Joan is a Senior member of the Federation of Canadian Artists (SFCA), a full member of the American Academy of Equine Artists (AAEA) and holds the Premier Pastelist designation with the Pastel Society of Canada (PPC).

Joan and her husband Paul Smith own and operate Creekside Studio from their acreage in the rural area of Coombs on Vancouver Island where they live with their family and assorted animals, including horses . . . which Joan states “are simply necessary.”

Patricia Lowe


Vice-President; Director

Patricia Lowe calls herself an accidental artist, coming to the studio late in life with a background in design, and a love of colour.  Dabbling in watercolour and acrylics at first, it was love at first touch when she borrowed a friends set of Sennelier pastels.  Since that experience she has painted in many workshops with Canadian and American artists realizing she is game for any subject matter from landscapes to pets and everything in between.  She has shown her work in local community art spaces in juried shows, solo and in collaboration with other artists. Patricia was a student of Ruth Rodgers and painted alongside Susan Typert for many years in Ruth’s workshop in Port Perry. Recently retired, she looks forward to more time in the studio.  She loves drawing and is a firm believer in the process from thumbnails and value sketches to the finished product.  That said, her sketchbooks have become a valuable reference and a record of the journey.  Her commitment to local cultural heritage has resulted in the creation of the Whitevale Arts and Culture Centre.  She is an active member of the Pickering Public Art Committee making sure good public art is part of landscape where she lives. 

Kathy Hildebrandt


PAC Past President 

Kathy Hildebrandt served as the President of Pastel Artists.CA from 2017 until 2021.  She also designed and developed the current PAC website and continues to provide support to our website editor.

Before stepping down as president Kathy was actively involved with PAC since shortly after joining in 2007, volunteering in several areas. She was the exhibition submission coordinator for many years and served as Vice President for 2 years before taking on the President role.

Carol Harris

Treasurer; Director

Carol is a studio artist who works from photographs that capture a range of subjects that interest her. She particularly likes to paint the canyons and hoodoos found in Alberta, Arizona, New Mexico and Utah. Other expressions of interests include abstracts, buildings, cityscapes and landscapes.

Carol prefers to express her creativity through the mediums of acrylics and pastels. Although she is mainly self-taught, she has furthered her artistic abilities through classes and workshops, many of which were instructed by leading pastel artists.

Carol paints regularly with a group of women artists from the Kingston community. She also runs a small framing business, mainly framing her own works and those of the other artists working in her studio.  

Carol’s work is represented in private collections in Canada, England and the United States.


co-Treasurer; Director

Position is vacant; please let us know if you would like to volunteer for this position and take over the Treasurer position.

Rosemary Bennett

Secretary; Director

Originally from British Columbia, Rosemary has resided in Calgary since the 1970’s. Her avid love of horses, wild life, and the landscape is expressed in her work. Regarded as a representational artist, she interprets her surroundings with passion and realism. She is proficient in many mediums as well as being a respected stained glass artisan. In recent years, her work has concentrated on becoming familiar with, and adept at, the pastel medium.

Rosemary is a full time artist and artisan. In addition to her work with Pastel Artists.CA, Rosemary is active with the Federation of Canadian Artists and was membership secretary of the Calgary chapter of the Federation for seventeen years and Vice President of the chapter for nine years. She has also been the President of the Group Art Society of Calgary for the last five years. Rosemary is always eager to learn new methods and will always mentor those new artists who are coming in to the arts community.

Rosemary Bennett, Secretary
Gloria Burgoin 1

Gloria Burgoin


Membership & Archives; Director

Gloria is a recreational painter who enjoys expressing her interest in the natural landscape through her artwork.  She works on site to capture the essence of the image, with some finishing in the studio.  She participates in local and PAC shows, and her work is represented in private collections in Canada and internationally.

Denise Nonomura


East Exhibition Chair

Denise is an award winning artist from Stratford, ON. While originally working in hospital pharmacy, she attended Sheridan College of Arts and Design, and graduated with high honours from the Fine Arts Certificate Program in 2015. After retiring from health care in 2016, Denise discovered her love of pastel and since then her work has been exhibited in over 20 juried national/regional competitions. She exhibits at Stratford Art in the Park (June-Sept) and is represented at Village Studios, Stratford.

Denise is a juried active member of Federation of Canadian Artists and a member of Society of Canadian Artists. She also volunteers at Gallery Stratford, and Stratford General Hospital where she developed, and leads a weekly Art Group for inpatients of the Mental Health Unit.

Denise Nonomura, East Exhibition Co-Chair


East Promotions Coordinator

Position is vacant; please let us know if you would like to volunteer for this position.

Roberta 600

Roberta Combs


West Exhibition Coordinator and Promotion Coordinator

Roberta Combs is a Spilsbury Medal award winner in the Federation of Canadian Artists. Her award-winning work has been seen in International Artists Magazine, Southwest Art Magazine and in the Pastel Journal Magazine. She has exhibited in the Butler Institute of American Art, The Federation Gallery, the American Art Company, The National Arts Club Gallery and the Salmagundi Club in New York City, The Vose Gallery in Boston, and locations that include Palm Springs, Los Angeles, Seattle, Toronto, and Albuquerque and France.

Roberta Combs has been awarded Senior Signature Status in the Federation of Canadian Artists and the Northwest Pastel Society; is a Fellow of the Canadian Institute of Portrait Artists; and is a Master Pastelist of the Pastel Artists Canada. Roberta has also been awarded Master Status Pastelist in the Pastel Society of America. She is the only Canadian to hold this distinction.

She is one of only six Canadians to be a Gold Metal recipient from the International Association of Pastel Societies, recognizing her designation as an artist of the Master Circle.                                                                                                                

Lyn Thomas


 West Promotions, West Workshop Coordinator

Lyn Thomas has been painting for many years in watercolour and had no thoughts of changing mediums. However, since turning to Pastels, she has been doing more painting.​

Lyn has been an active member of the arts community in Maple Ridge for more than 30 years.  During this time, she has been instrumental in development and direction of the Garibaldi Art Club of Maple Ridge.​

Lyn also originated the annual ‘Art in the Park’ event where local artists and artisans were able to showcase and sell their work for an eagerly anticipated weekend.  She organized and hosted this major Maple Ridge event in her beautiful two-acre garden for fifteen years. It became very popular with artists and art collectors in the local community and beyond.​

Lyn has operated her well established home-based picture framing business Lynton Studio for 30 years.  Recently she has turned her focus more keenly toward her art and has slowed down on her business interests while she accelerates her artistic creativity.

In 2018, Lyn received the designation of PAC.  Which was great encouragement.

Lyn has offered this year to be the Western Canadian workshop co-ordinator.   Watch out for a 3 day workshop, September/October 2019.  In the Vancouver/Lower Mainland area.


Lyn Thomas



 East Promotions


Anne Fraser

Website Editor

Anne considers her art as a much loved hobby.  She has worked with most mediums but has concentrated on pastels once she discovered the medium over 20 years ago.  It’s such a versatile and forgiving medium! She has taken many workshops and art trips to learn, grow and experiment with pastels.  She loves the colour vibrancy that pastels provide. 


East Workshop Coordinator

Catherine Sheppard


Newsletter Editor

Drawing and painting have always been a big part of my life ever since I was young. My teachers recognized my art ability and told me that I would become an artist one day. I spent many hours drawing, viewing books and magazines that had photos and illustrations.

My focus on art in high school allowed me to graduate with majors in Commercial Art & Photography. My parents owned a printing business which enhanced my knowledge of the production end of the business. I followed a pathway that led me through the computer desktop publishing revolution. I mastered the ever changing array of programs to marry both my artistic and technical skills to help my art where it is today.

I belong to many art groups where I can show my art and interact with other very creative people. I have flourished in this environment with many awards and qualifications.

Active Member of The Federation of Canadian Artists – SFCA,  Pastel Artists of Canada – MPAC, South Delta Artists Guild

Kristin Vignal


Social Media Coordinator

Kristin is a Calgary based artist who is passionate about the medium of dry pastel.  For the most part, Kristin’s work is representational.  When immersed in a painting she hopes to translate her appreciation of the subtle nuances of colour, pattern and small details of her chosen subject, and give the viewer pause to look closely and enjoy the moment.  Kristin works in acrylics, collage and various drawing mediums as well, and is currently exploring abstract techniques.  She has shared her knowledge of dry pastels with workshops for those who are new to the medium.

Kristin was awarded her MPAC Signature designation in 2017.  She is an Active member with the Federation of Canadian Artists and was a founding member and inaugural president for a new FCA chapter while living in BC.  Kristin’s work has been accepted in numerous regional, national and international exhibits, winning a variety of awards.

Ruth Greenlaw


DVD Librarian


June Gauthier


PAC News Update Editor

June joined Pastel Artists of Ontario in 2001 and was awarded PAC status by Pastel Artists Canada in 2004 and MPAC status by Pastel Artists.CA in 2010. She was the PAC Newsletter/Update Editor for fifteen years.

June studied art history at the University of Toronto and furthered her practical art education in workshops instructed by leading pastel artists.

June now meets once a week with a group of artists who all paint in their chosen style and medium, she finds the exchange of ideas within this group very stimulating.

Susan Typert


Submissions Coordinator;  Show Catalogue Designer

As a Master Pastelist with Pastel Artists Canada I am constantly expanding my horizons and pushing myself to experiment with new techniques and subject matter. My art is ever-evolving as I look for ways to tell compelling, translatable stories that make an emotive connection with the audience. I am humbled to have been an award-recipient in several annual PAC juried shows as well as being awarded first place in both still life and portraiture categories in the Oshawa Art Association juried shows. I was honoured to have been juried into the Society of Canadian Artists in 2022. In my professional work as a Creative Strategist, I run Blue Sky Sessions to help companies engage in “out-of-the-box” thinking. 

The meaning of life is to find your gift. The purpose of life is to give it away.

~~William Shakespeare~~

Volunteers do not necessarily have the time; they just have the heart.

~~Elizabeth Andrew~~