Lynsey Dyer is the total package. You’ve probably seen her hucking D-Spins off cliffs in the Tetons, in the latest Warren Miller movie, or on the pages of ski magazines, schussing where no other lady has gone before. And even though she may have balls larger and more grand than many a male freeskier on the mountain, Dyer is elegant, soft-spoken and every bit a beautiful lady. What’s more, Dyer is also a talented and creative artist, and pushes graphic boundaries to make pieces as pleasing to the eye as herself.
This week, Dyer’s work will be on display and for sale at the Mountainfilm Festival in Telluride, CO, from May 22 through May 25. Her pieces will first be highlighted during a gallery walk, along with other mountain artists, like Jimmy Chin.
If you can’t make the festival, you can also check out Dyer’s work on her Web site, and purchase pieces from there to get a little more Lynsey in your life. Until then, read on to see what Dyer and her art are all about.
TSC: Tell us about your art. What inspires you to create?
LD: Well, it’s graphic art. I love photography, too and I’m incorporating it into my work now.
One thing that’s done well is when a piece represents an area… I did a piece on Main Street of Jackson Hole, and that’s done really well there. I’m working on one for Telluride, now.
TSC: How do you make your art?
LD: With towns, I look at the history and how it used to look. If there are or were any special buildings…
For Telluride, I’m putting a mountain biker in it. Telluride is one of those towns that’s been environmentally conscious way before it was cool. In general, I make sure I’m incorporating the things that make these towns special.
So, I draw the piece and scan it into my computer. I like flat color. My background is in woodblock printmaking. So, I don’t like brushstrokes. I like flat, vibrant color. The printing process can then give it a saturated, inky feel.
TSC: How do you do all that on the road?
LD: Well it’s harder to have access to that. But I just draw into the computer and then after it’s printed I go back over it and do mixed media. I’ll print it on canvas or special papers, and then go over it with more inks, or pinks, or different finishes for texture or shininess…
TSC: How do you draw straight into the computer?
LD: I draw with my finger on the mouse pad. If you look closely, it’s really loose. Nothing is exact. But that also gives it a more raw feel. Then suddenly I have a style.
TSC: Are your pieces for sale and will they be at the show?
LD: Yes. They range from $150 (I do a bunch of small pieces. They’re easier to buy because they travel easier….) to $1500.
TSC: Are there any pieces you’re especially proud of?
LD: There’s one that’s 25 inches wide by 6 feet long. It’s not on my Web site, yet. But I’m really proud of it. It’s a woman in the mountains…
Here in Jackson they have the sleeping Indian, which is what the outline of the mountains looks like.
I did a play on that, but instead of the Indian, it’s a woman shaped by the Tetons.
I also did one piece specifically for SheJumps (Dyer’s foundation she started along with Vanessa Pierce and Claire Smallwood, which helps inspire, support and promote women in sport). It’s a picture of a girl walking—her silhouette with skis and a miniskirt. She was a random girl, I saw. It was really warm that day, and she was carrying her skis and a beer, and wearing a miniskirt. I just loved that. 100% of sales from this piece go to SheJumps.
TSC: When did you first start creating art, and what inspired you to try?
LD: It was long before the whole skiing thing. I realized I had a natural leaning… I was just better at it than I was at math. I was naturally drawn there. I remember winning an art contest in Kindergarten…
It’s something I’ve always been attracted to. I love mixing different mediums, and different techniques. That’s always been interesting to me. And also the graphic element; the computer is just another tool to enhance what we already know, and what we’re used to seeing. I saw it as the next level of what I could teach myself, to enhance what I do.
Plus it’s good to have those skills if I need a real job someday. I actually had a graphic design job, and it wasn’t that creative. That really pushed me to do my own thing, and do it better. It takes a concerted effort of pushing your own stuff for long enough.
TSC: Does it help keep a balance with skiing?
LD: Definitely. It’s a really nice contrast to being so physical all the time. It quiets me down. Skiing stimulates my mind too, ‘cause I’m so scared, and skiing is really energizing. My art is a good balance to that masculine and feminine energy. I feel like it’s feminine because it’s quiet.
TSC: Does your skiing or travels influence your designs?
LD: Absolutely. A lot of my subject matter comes from the mountains, obviously, but it’s from a female perspective. It’s just the whole mountain lifestyle. I’m so inspired by being outside.
The one thing that separates it is that often times being the only girl on these trips, you can feel really isolated. In some ways, it’s a really powerful feeling. The light is sparkling and it’s your dream, and you’re out in the middle of nowhere.
But being out there is a position not many girls have a chance to be in, and my art is my way of sharing those experiences. I want to express my favorite moments.
It could be someone alone on a peak. Or there’s one that’s a kayaker guy. Those moments when you feel so small, and the environment around you is so breathtaking. It’s about trying to capture those moments in art, and sharing these amazing opportunities to be outside.
TSC: If you could have one of your designs anywhere, where would you want it to be?
LD: Ideally it would be on something that sells really well so I can keep doing it. I think about product all the time, like for She Jumps. I don’t want to ask for money.
I mean, there are T-shirts, but I’ve done it. And the world doesn’t necessarily need T-shirts. I’d want my design to be on something the world needs. A community for females is something the world needs.
For more information on Lynsey and her work, visit www.lynseydyer.com.
Photo and Artwork: Lynsey Dyer