Readings (Incomplete)

Red Deer College 1977-79

Burnaby Art Gallery 1984-86

Maple Ridge Art Gallery 1985

Place des Art 1984 1985

Royal Roads University 1997 1998

Beacon Unitarian Church

BaffleGAb Fine Art Gallery 2003

Wordstorm Nanaimo B.C. 2006

The Collective Works Artist Association 2009 Victoria

Wordstorm Nanaimo B.C. 201l

Qualicum Beach Rotary club December 2011










M. Elizabeth Symons MA (Betsy)

The eye, which is said to be the window of the soul is the primary means by which the sensus communis of the brain may most fully and magnificently contemplate the infinite works of nature, and the ear is the second, acquiring nobility through the recounting of things which the eye has seen.’
Leonardo de Vinci

Before graduating in 1998 with a MA from Royal Roads University in Victoria, B.C., I was actively involved in the arts community in Vancouver and the lower mainland After completing my thesis I engaged once again in the creative process of the art and the craft of writing fiction and poetry. 

I am passionate about colour, texture and the relationship between language and landscape; poetry and the natural world. When nature speaks I celebrate the poem of inner landscapes. In my work I strive for the ambiguity of unexpected time frames and hidden space.

On any given day in my studio you might find me with watercolour paper creating wash after wash or perhaps standing at the easel putting the finishing touches on the latest canvas. I like to work out an idea, be it poetic, philosophical or political, in my sketch book using charcoal and/or pencil. Then with rag and/or brush in hand and a bucket of acrylic paint, layer in colour and texture on canvas to express and expand the idea. Sometimes I get lost, lose my way, other times I am rewarded by seeing a space in between opening up a way to take the work to another level. Sometimes I will complete the canvas in oil. From the point of view of my daughter or granddaughter’s generation, this process is organic. For them, given the demand of digital technology, the sketch book combined with the power of face to face art of conversation (that seldom happens anymore) is like a caveman’s tool estranged yet to be re discovered.

While more often than not I work alone I like to talk art. It is a hands on learn by doing process. Perceptions lost and new ones gained. Rules undone re-emerge to be broken again. It’s risky business; takes courage. I enjoy listening to others and the sharing points of different points view.

Over the years I have exhibited and sold paintings through many galleries in Vancouver, Victoria and throughout Vancouver Island.

Currently I live in Qualicum Beach where I love to teach.  I am a member of the Community Arts Council of Greater Victoria, The Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, The Nanaimo Art Gallery, The League of Canadian Poets, and the Federation of BC Writers, and a member of The Old School House in Qualicum Beach as well as The Collective – also in Qualicum Beach. I’m also a member of Echo Theatre in Qualicum Beach where I am active on the reading committee.

I’ve just completed a poetry manuscript of 56 poems which has been edited and is ready to be published. A few of the poems reflect some of the new paintings in my Oils & Acrylics gallery and share the same title.

My interests also include political and environmental issues, hiking and swimming.

August 2012/updated Jan 2016


Publishing Credits

The following is an incomplete list of publishing credits:

NEW THURSDAY, c. 1978 Red Deer College Press Red Deer Alberta

VISIONS, c 1984 Black Buzzard Press Arlington VA

THE NEW QUARTERLY, c. 1984 Vol IV No. 3 Waterloo Ontario

JEOPARDY c 1989 Spring Vol 25 Western Washington University

PRAIRIE SCHOONER 1993 Vol 67 No. 4 University of Nebraska

SCRIVENER, c McGill University published twice 1989

CBC Broadcast, June 1987 BAG LADY

LEADERSHIP AN ANTHOLOGY, co-editor, Royal Roads University 1998

BACKWATER REVIEW Spring Summer 1999

AGUA TERRA Ascent Aspirations Publishing November 2006

The Dalhousie Review Autumn 2011

Marketing Potential

– I have a website and am familiar with social networking
– Maintain membership in The League of Canadian Poets, and The Federation of B.C. Writers.
– Maintain memberships in the Victoria Arts Council as well as Oceanside Arts Council in Parksville
– I am a member of the Nanaimo Art Gallery where I exhibit my paintings
– I am on Facebook
– Active in local community
– Mentor a local writer workshop group
– Teach at the local Art Centre The Old School House
– I am prepared to travel


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