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Arden Batik ~ From Then to Now
Lorne and Sarah Hale,
Ottawa Christmas Craft Show, 1976

I have drawn, coloured, painted, and made art of one sort or another as long as I can remember. At the age of 10, I expected to become a famous artist, and through high school and university, when I thought I should do something “useful” like teach school, I continued to take studio art courses as often as possible. I was first exposed to wax resist art during a year of living in Japan, and after moving to Arden, I took an afternoon workshop in the basic batik techniques. Very soon, I realized that I not only enjoyed the process, but also liked the finished results – that finally, I had a way of depicting landscape that seemed fresh and new. Also, people bought my work, which meant I could afford to do more.

Sarah at
Perth Autumn Studio Tour 2005

Within a few years, my batik experiments were a full time family business which has remained my major source of income ever since. My late husband Lorne and I worked together for over twenty years, doing some of the major retail art/craft shows in Ontario (One of a Kind and the Ottawa Christmas Craft Show) as well as travelling all over Ontario and into Quebec and New England. Since his death in 1999, I have concentrated more on my gallery and shop in Arden. I have also completed a Master of Christian Studies with an Art Thesis Project from Regent College in Vancouver. The thesis culminated in a show of appliquéd and quilted batiks on the theme of The Tree of Life.

My studios in Arden (summer and winter locations) are open by chance or appointment all year round, and during the summer I am open Wednesday through Saturday from 10 to 5 and Sunday afternoons.  I also participate in the Perth Autumn Studio Tour, and am a member of the Rideau Lakes Artists’ Association.  Our Arden Artisans' group holds an Annual Garden Party and Open House on the 4th Saturday of July, and we welcome visitors to our studio homes.