I was lucky enough to grow up in a creative home in the California Foothills. My mother was an artist who inspired me. As a young girl I spent time painting and illustrating short, make-believe stories while sitting in large oak trees. My love for art never stopped. I'm a self taught artist. I create whimsical paintings with a touch of fantasy in them.
Painting gives me a way to express myself. And it means so much to me when someone connects with my art. I often focus on the ocean in my work because I believe we need to care for it. I'm also an advocate for insuring the arts are available to our youth. When I'm not painting I'm often teaching art classes for children and teens in my classroom.
I reside in Northern California with my husband and two sons who continue to support me. I paint in my home studio where our four rescue dogs supervise my work.
My paintings are sold in galleries nationally and to collectors around the globe. It's been an honor to have artwork published in magazines, books, on CD covers and used on Universal Studio and TLC sets. I have large murals displayed in businesses in the California Bay Area. And my mermaid paintings were also on display at the ADEX International show In Singapore, India, China, Indonesia and Egypt promoting plastic free oceans which is a subject I feel passionate about.
Nancy's Art on the cover of Pink Magazine . And an article about her artwork.
Laguna Beach Magazines article about Nancy Quiaoit and her artwork shown in Pacific Gallery in Laguna Beach, California.
Nancy's mermaid paintings were on display at the ADEX International show In Singapore, India, China, Indonesia and Egypt promoting plastic free oceans.
Nancy's artwork is published in The Golden Thread Project book. Written by the Golden Thread Gallery in West Hartford, CT.
Nancy's mermaid artwork can be seen in movie named Sisters starring Tina Fey and Amy Poehler.
The College of Saint Mary in
OMAHA, NE is an all women college which was started in 1923. Nancy's artwork is hanging in their library.
Nancy's mermaid art on the cover of Paisley Magazine.
Nancy's mermaid mural inside Black hawk Beauty Bar Spa located in the prestigious area of Blackhawk, California.
Raising money for Ukrainian humanitarian efforts .Nancy's painting being featured during an auction fundraiser by 4P Gallery in Georgia. .
Nancy's artwork on the cover of country singers, Patrice Webbs CD.
Nancy instructed a large outdoor mural project created by 95 elementary aged students located on Lake Canyon Elementary School in Galt, CA. It included several areas of current study such as environmental impacts, technology, health and wellness and helping others and the community. The objective was to give students a voice. It was filmed by local news stations Good Day Sacramento and KXTV. The murals are a permanent fixture for all to see.
Nancy being filmed instructing a large painting class.
Growing up in the California foothills, Nancy Quiaoit was a natural artist. “Since I was a very young girl I’ve always expressed myself through painting and drawing,” she told us. Although she briefly pursued formal training, Nancy now describes herself as a self-taught artist. “I made this decision when I took a college art class. I didn’t enjoy the class or the restrictions it placed on my creative ideas.” The freedom expressed in her work is evidence that she made the right choice. Artist0622 2This month’s cover art is “The Mermaid Dance.” We asked Nancy why she paints so many mermaids, and why this one is “dancing” with dolphins: “I paint a lot of mermaids because I love women, the ocean and fantasy. Our oceans connect all life. The ocean is powerful yet fragile. I think women are like the ocean in many ways, too. They are strong, give life, can be playful and soft while still being a force of nature. I like to capture their playfulness and ability to nurture. I painted “The Mermaid Dance” after watching dolphins when I was visiting Hawaii. They were so playful and beautiful.” We’re glad you took that trip to Hawaii, Nancy! Like many women artists, Nancy endeavors to maintain work/life balance: “My largest challenge has been balancing time and avoiding tiredness. There is nothing more important than family. I need my children to know they are my priority, and I’m invested in their happiness, education and personal growth. At the same time, I want to grow and nurture my career, which I’m passionate about. I found blending these two things together at times helped, along with making sure some time in every day was solely dedicated to family life,” Nancy explained.
In addition to her family and her time creating art, she also teaches art. We asked Nancy what drives her to teach: “I teach art because I strongly feel art is meant to be shared and enjoyed. It’s a joy to watch my students express themselves while getting excited about their unique creations. I often hear the word ‘can’t’ from my students. It thrills me to see students do what they claimed couldn’t be done and exude pride in their finished artwork. Teaching art helps students in building confidence, developing critical thinking skills and fine motor skills. And when art is paired with core curriculum, it helps with developing a deeper understanding by creating an attachment to it.” Nancy’s art is playful, with a definite sense of adventure, which makes her a perfect fit for our #AdventureAwaits issue. She told us, “My greatest adventure has been finding my true self. It has been a wonderful journey!” We know you’ll enjoy exploring Nancy’s work. We hope it inspires you to find the adventure in every day!
Nancy’s whimsical and textured work can be seen and purchased at www.NancyQstudio.com. You can also check her out on Etsy (NancyQstudio), Instagram (@nancyqstudio) and Facebook (@ArtistNancyQ).
Nancy's Art on the cover of Pink Magazine.
A TOUCH OF FANTASY
Inspired by her mother, who was also an artist, Nancy Quiaoit has always been immersed in the creative world, teaching at art camps, painting theater sets and designing public murals as a teenager. Formal courses were part of the equation for a while, but ultimately Quiaoit decided to teach herself rather than obtain an official degree. “I found the classes in art limiting,” she explains. “… I just enjoyed painting what was in my mind’s eye, unrestrained.” Although she dabbles with ocean scenes and paintings featuring animals like birds and horses, what Quiaoit truly excels at is painting mermaids. “I love women and fantasy,” she says. “Mermaids are strong and feminine, yet incredibly playful.” Her pieces have a whimsical quality about them, with charming water nymphs depicted mid-swim, down in the ocean, along a moonlit coastline or even in a foamy bubble bath. Using stretched canvases, palette knives and versatile acrylic paints, she adds complex detailing, from dappled color on the mermaids’ tails to luscious curls in their hair. “I can build texture, create translucent washes and layer colors with … [acrylic] paint,” she says, adding that her style is impressionism mixed with “a touch of fantasy.” Each piece begins with an idea followed by a simple curved line. “I usually see or feel something that sparks creativity and evokes emotion,” Quiaoit says. “I’ll scribble the idea down in a journal and think about how to bring it to life. Once I start painting, the image that was in my mind evolves.” Though Quiaoit and her artistic company, Nancy Q Studio, are based up near Sacramento, Calif., her work has been displayed at Pacific Gallery for the last two years, as she says she loves Laguna Beach’s small town feel: “It’s a true community with an eclectic mix of people in a beautiful environment.” When she’s not painting, you’ll find her enjoying the company of her husband and two sons, gardening, swimming or hiking. Quiaoit also teaches art to second- through 12th-grade students while simultaneously advocating for creative expression to remain a part of the public school system.