Familiar Faces – Lamya Deeb
September 6, 2018
Lamya Deeb may look familiar because she and her family are longtime residents of the area. Shopping, running errands, or taking children to and from school, it is inevitable that we all cross paths many times over the years.
But you might find Deeb out in nature too, facing a glorious scene she’s capturing on her canvas. Or you may have met Deeb while she worked at Osmosis Art Gallery on a First Friday Art Walk. In any of these settings, you’ll find Deeb appreciating a connection with the environment she’s in – no matter if it is a landscape or an individual. We reached out to Deeb to learn more about the life behind her familiar face.
Left Hand Valley Courier (LHVC): What brought you to this area and how long have you lived here?
Lamya Deeb (LD): My parents had both studied at CSU in Fort Collins and my grandmother lived in the area. When I graduated high school and left Beirut, Lebanon, where I had spent most of my childhood, I came here because of these family connections.
I attended CSU and met my husband Russ there. Russ and I moved to Boulder in the mid 1980s, when he got a job as a software engineer. Later, we moved to the Gunbarrel Estates neighborhood where we raised our two kids, Perrin and Drake, who both attended the Niwot schools. Last spring, we found our perfect home in Niwot’s Morton Heights neighborhood. We love our new digs and being part of the community here!
LHVC: How long have you been an artist, what mediums do you prefer? Are you employed doing other things?
LD: I’ve loved to draw and paint since I was a little girl. My mother took some painting classes as a hobby and as a seven-year-old, I tagged along. Her instructor showed me how to paint in oils…it was a magical experience for me. I also remember putting on “art shows” on our front porch and I was always “the artist” among my group of friends. My seventh-grade art teacher really encouraged me and that is when I decided to study art and make it a career.
I’ve worked and dabbled in a variety of mediums, but my truest love is oil painting for its luminosity and luscious textural qualities. My favorite genres to work in are landscape and still-life.
Currently, I work fulltime on my art career. I have also been a part-time employee at Osmosis Art Gallery for a couple of years, working there during First Friday Art Walks, helping out during special events, and filling in on some Saturdays. It’s been a great way to get to know Niwot and to meet new friends and neighbors. My artwork is represented by Osmosis and by Mary Williams Fine Arts in Boulder.
LHVC: What type of work and/or school did you do before becoming a professional artist?
LD: I earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and then was employed and freelanced as a graphic designer and illustrator until we had our two children. At that time I became a stay-at-home mom. When our kids were a bit older, I returned to art studying with local landscape artist Jake Gaedtke, who introduced me to plein air (outdoor) painting and became my mentor. I was back to doing what I loved and never looked back.
LHVC: What do you like best about being an artist and what are the hardest parts of your work?
LD: The best part of being an artist for me is the joy I find in the creative process - eyes opened to the beauty in life and the connections I’ve made with so many wonderful people.
I find that the hardest part of being a professional artist is managing the business aspects; making time to paint and balancing all the other areas of my life. It’s overwhelming most of the time, but it’s energizing too.
LHVC: What is a challenge you've had to deal with in the past?
LD: One of the biggest challenges I’ve faced was the long period of time when I struggled with vertigo. I had continuous vertigo for three years and then off and on for another 10 years and occasionally have short episodes to this day. I worked so very hard to overcome it and eventually succeeded in getting my life back. Through this experience I learned a lot about perseverance, appreciation for the good things in life, and empathy for others who are suffering in their bodies.
LHVC: What is something you're proud of accomplishing?
LD: My years of intense study and practice in painting have allowed me to create some works that are really meaningful and beautiful to me and to others. I am proud to share them with the world and hope they will endure to touch future generations of viewers.
LHVC:What is something that most people would not know about you?
LD: I am an avid “balletomane.” I adore all things ballet and have enjoyed taking ballet classes for many years. It brings another dimension of beauty and grace to my world.
To learn more about Deeb and see her fine art, visit: www.lamyadeebfineart.com.
Editor’s Note: This column is part of our Q&A series about locals who are seen around in various aspects of their lives. The idea is getting to know the people behind these faces we see so often in our communities. Please send suggestions for Familiar Faces profiles to [email protected]