21 November 2018

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How this Ontario artist created a hyper-realistic painting of her dad

Leah Collins · CBC Arts

Kit King’s painting Pa, a portrait of the artist’s father, is the winner of the Kingston Prize Association’s People’s Choice Prize. (Instagram/@kit_king)

The 2015 Kingston Prize exhibition just left Fredericton’s Beaverbrook Art Gallery, but this week, museum-goers chose their favourite piece in the show. Kayla (Kit) King is the winner of their People’s Choice Prize for Pa, a portrait of her father in oils.

“My father and I have not always been as close as we could be,” King writes on the Kingston Prize website. “Yet despite this divide, he has been the predominant artistic influence in my life. Being an artist himself, my earliest memories are of me standing at his works in awe,” she continues.

These days, King’s the one with an audience. With 326,000-plus followers on Instagram, we imagine that for every double-tap, someone is slack-jawed in awe, staring at the hyper-realistic paintings and sketches in her feed, including those she creates in collaboration with her husband, Oda Popp.
Last year, as Pa took shape, the artist documented the project from her studio in Curran, Ont., a rural community about an hour outside of Ottawa.
King captured the work in progress from its initial stages…

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Through to moments of sleepless inspiration…
And despite the painstaking work involved, she kept her sense of humour while sharing status updates on her progress.


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