Acrylic & Watercolor Fine Artist
Vancouver, BC, Canada
Erika Hastings is an Canadian fine artist who paints the dancing breeze and uses color to evoke the magical realm where all things are made possible.
The soft white canvas beckons her towards abstraction and her fingertips sing with each flow of paint across it.
She trained in art, education (B.F.A, B.Ed, M.A.) and healing (CERT Pranic Healing, G.N.M.) invoking a dancing intersection between the two.
Erika lives cradled by mountains and embraced by oceans on the shores of Vancouver, BC, Canada.
Or, An Ode to Flow
When I was young, my world revolved around my roller skates and my rainbow t-shirt. Have you ever had an outfit that you never wanted to take off, ever? This was mine.
A scrawny girl with straight blond, messy hair, faded jeans with a hole in the knee, three quarter length sleeves with a bright rainbow splashed across it and the skates.
Oh, the white leather skates with worn down rubber wheels. They gave me freedom. They gave me motion. They gave me flow.
Little did I know, but my search through space and time, across the varied corners of the planet and buried deep in the hidden words cloaked with truth in vast libraries were all in search of one single truth: flow.
If my six year old self knew it without a doubt, as the wind whipped her hair and carried her across the faded asphalt, marked with seasons of flow, my 12 year old remembered to carry it forward, over the ice, twirling with grace. Roller skating changed to ice skating, ice skating changed to dance, dance morphed into painting, and painting, a deep and full-bodied form of flow, has carried me forward through the ups and downs of my life, guiding me gently through the soft current and leading me always back to my true self.
To find my inner flow, I have learned to still myself and connect with the energy that exists outside of this world, outside of time and space, outside of all material reality. I connect with my ancestors, who brought me here, who guide me still and I connect all of the great, luminous beings that give me light, give me strength and give me flow.
In the space of this flow, I find my path to art. I become mesmerized by the brilliance of colours as they move along their path, knowing which way they need to go and never doubting their synchronicity within the cohesion of the artwork. I am enamoured by words, so subtle and fragrant, like soft velvet cupcakes melting gently in my mouth. I am awakened by movement, pulsing through my body, healing me, helping me, keeping me alive. I am entranced by light, streaming out from the heavens, capturing the beauty of flora in the moss-covered woods. These things heal my heart, awaken my spirit, and feed my soul with flow-feeding life-sustenance.
When I hold my paintbrush, the life-flow moves through me. When I capture the invisible light and its transformative beauty through my lens, this life-flow sustains me. When I write, the flow awakens me. And when I heal, the flow emboldens me.
All of my life, my world has revolved around teaching me to find flow. It was with flow that I found myself, became myself, and became a better version of myself. It was with flow that art poured out of me, my heart opened up and healed, and words found a way to live and breathe on the pages of my life.
I was a North Dakota, winter-storm-born baby, spending my early childhood in their stark white winters, and later in the warm glow of salty, summer California air. At age seven, we moved to Alberta, Canada, where icicles grew in my hair and finally settled in British Columbia, where damp, green-gold moss hangs in the air.
After high school, in search of which form of flow my life would take me, I spent a year deep in sweat and covered in mosquitoes, volunteering at a village hospital on the coast of Honduras. I returned to white walls at the University of Victoria to study fine art and languages.
In search of more flow, I satiated my senses with a year of hot chilis and bold colors, studying art and Spanish in San Miguel de Allende and Colima, Mexico. My flow found its course, on the waves of the sea and I joined a band of local surfers from the coast.
After university, I samba-ed through South America with my husband, Christopher, and returned to mountains of paperwork at the University of British Columbia, completing my education degree and my Master’s in Art Education. I took a group of 15 research participants through a journey of self-exploration as they searched for higher meaning through their art. My thesis, entitled, ‘Creating Art as an Act of Prayer,’ was a stepping off point for my own practice now.
I didn’t choose to become a teacher, but I fell into it, like a bird who has just fallen out of her nest. My parents were teachers, their parents were teachers. I worked as a high school teacher for six years and when the first of my three children was born, I shelved my plans to do a Ph.D., work in a high school, or sleep through the night. I spent the next 15 years raising and homeschooling three vibrant, creative children, making art, writing and satiating my senses with photography.
One day I realized that my highly sensitive nature, which I had slowly learned to accept and nurture, was an incredible gift that gave me the ability to feel energy.
I honed in on these skills, becoming a certified Pranic (energy) Healer, intuitive healer, and training in homeopathy, herbal medicine, German New Medicine, linking emotions to physical illnesses, Neuro-Linguistic Programming, and counselling.
With the skills I mastered in energy healing, I then incorporated them into my artwork, developing a new type of painting called, Healing Paintings.
All art emits energy, but art that has been infused with a spiritual energy holds tremendous power to heal others. It radiates a frequency that when placed in a room, can instantly transform everything and everyone around it. When you are near a healing painting, your whole being will slowly start to transform and, little by little, it will bring out the essence of who you are meant to be, returning you to your inner wholeness.
What I most love about sharing my art with others is the healing impact that it can have on a space and consequently on the people that engage and surround that place.
If Flow were a person, she would be my great-great grandmother, teaching me to sail down the river with ease, soar through the sky with calm self-assuredness, and glide over the land with a confident unhurriedness.
She visits me when I dream, taking me to far away lands where I float down sun-drenched rivers in my unicorn inner tube, dazzled by the greens and yellows overhead.
Flow cradles me with mountains and embraces me with oceans on the shores of Vancouver, BC, Canada, where I live with my husband, three children, mother, father (dream interpreter extraordinaire), two dogs and two gerbils.