Jynae Bergeron, the creative force behind Art and Airplanes, is a Canadian wood-based visual artist specializing in pyrography and woodworking.
Having been born to the flatlands of Southern Saskatchewan, Canada, it wasn’t until her late 20s that she recognized an opportunity to acquire, with permission of course, the heavily weathered barn wood from century-old, abandoned buildings scattered across the open fields. While these decaying structures are typically destined to be burned by the farmers who own them, Jynae takes that exquisitely textured wood and transforms it into artwork that represents a contrasting landscape. Her creations not only depict narratives of the natural world but are also crafted from elements of the natural world itself, in a manner that emphasizes reclamation and environmental consciousness.
Jynae has been honing her skills in the art of pyrography (wood burning) since 2012. However, it was not until 2020 that she embarked on learning to handle power tools and working with wood, guided by her remarkable father, Norm. Norm, a highly intelligent and talented individual, is a retired carpenter and farmer. Jynae acknowledges that her current accomplishments are indebted to the unwavering support and belief of the people around her. She considers herself a culmination of every person who has lent their assistance throughout her artistic journey and expresses eternal gratitude towards them.
Artrepreneur: What inspired you to become a visual artist, and how has that inspiration evolved over time?
Jynae Bergeron: My entire life I’ve been drawn to creating. I’ve always felt motivated to make representations of the natural things I love: landscapes and animals. While growing up, art class was a subject that I enjoyed and excelled in and although my subjects have always remained the same, my style and mediums have shifted many times throughout the years. In 2012 my parents gave me and old wood burner that my grandfather owned, and I tried out the craft of pyrography for the first time. Slowly, I fell more and more in love with the process of burning wood. Eight years later, in 2020 I decided that I wanted to try actual woodworking because I had grown such a passion towards wood as a medium. My dad (a retired carpenter) taught me the way of power tools and woodworking quickly became my biggest artistic obsession. My inspiration has been drawn from all of the experiences I’ve collected around the world and the landscapes / animals that I love most.
ATP: What drives your passion for creating art?
JB: I want to express, reciprocate, and instil a sense of love and gratitude for the natural world and the abundance of gifts it provides to us. I want to inspire movement towards sustainability and protecting our ecosystems. I want to inspire others to explore – through their own creative expression, or out into the great wilderness that surrounds us all. With the current construct of our western society, being consistently immersed in mother nature isn’t always attainable for many; therefore my passion is to fill living spaces with striking reminders of what’s out there waiting for us. But first and foremost, I want to create with my imagination and my hands every single day, because it makes me feel fulfillment and joy.
ATP: How do you navigate the balance between artistic exploration and the need for technical skill development?
JB: With woodworking, I believe artistic exploration and technical skill development go hand in hand. They expand simultaneously together, so the balance between the two is easy to find, but often challenging to absorb. There can be some steep and intimidating learning curves working with power tools. I’m fortunate to have my dad (a retired carpenter) and my life partner (also a creative woodworker) to teach and guide me through different techniques that are new to me, but that I need to learn in order to achieve an idea I have.
ATP: What role does intuition play in your creative process, and how do you balance it with deliberate planning?
JB: Intuition and meticulous planing both play an equal role in my process. I draw out my entire concept before I tackle it, however I never really know what the end product will look like due to the nature of reclaimed wood. I have a general idea and am careful with which wood types I pick, but the completed pieces are always a bit of a surprise for me as well. Once I’ve glued even the smallest piece down, it’s there permanently – I don’t have the advantage of being able to paint over something with my unique art style. There is a lot of pressure to trust myself, and make the right intuitive choices early in the process. I plan it all out early, and then flow through the process and let the wood tell it’s own story.
ATP: Can you discuss a particular piece of artwork that holds significant personal meaning for you?
JB: ‘The Sound of Home’ is an artwork that holds significant personal meaning to me. I wood burnt a detailed Great Horned Owl double exposed with a foggy coniferous forest, surrounded by a medley of reclaimed wood from my family’s farm. This particular piece resonates so strongly with me because we have had wild great horned owls living in the evergreen trees in my parent’s backyard since the day I was born. I hear their calls almost every evening when I’m home. Needless to say, I gifted the art piece to my parents. The craziest part about creating this are piece, though: when I went to photograph my woodburnt owl in the forest, a great horned owl flew up to me to inspect me and the art piece. It was a very surreal encounter to have a creature of the night take such a big interest in my existence during the day. I think that they recognized a reflection of themselves in the work I completed. A very powerful moment.
To view more of Jynae’s work please visit her profile.