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SOPHIA LEE

PAINTER
ILLUSTRATOR
DANCER

MANITOBA / BC CANADA

Welcome. 

Hello and thank you for visiting my art space! My name is Sophia and I am a Canadian artist, painter, and a former principal ballet dancer. I was born in South Korea where I had spent most of my childhood before moving to Vancouver, BC, Canada with my family. My time as a young child both in Korea and Canada was pleasant and peaceful with plentiful space to create & learn art. I was fortunate enough to receive training in ballet, piano, figure skating, swimming, etc. At the age of sixteen, I found myself moving to the centre of Canada (Winnipeg, Manitoba) to begin my professional ballet training at the world-famous Royal Winnipeg Ballet School. Upon graduation, I was given the opportunity to join the prestigious Royal Winnipeg Ballet company where I spent the past ten years dancing, performing, and touring around the world. The dance world is massive and dynamic. It is full of action, creativity, madness, passion, and many lessons to be learned. 

 

 

Painting for me started a little after I had begun to dance. As a little child, I always found joy and fascination in any type of creative process, especially ones that required the use of my hands. Crafts, drawing, painting, doing art projects for school, and watching art shows on tv (who remembers Art Attack?!) were my ultimate favourites. While dance was my whole life, my passion for painting remained deeply rooted in my heart. Throughout my childhood, adolescence, and even well into my dance career my need and desire to keep on painting continued. 

 

In early 2020, we were introduced to the sudden and inevitable attack of COVID-19. During the several months of quarantine, I began to contemplate leaving the one and only world I knew truly well. One reason for this was to fix certain health/eating issues commonly related to being a dancer. Another reason for this thought process came from my longing to branch out and explore different worlds outside of the ballet. It may have seemed like an extreme decision to make after 20 years of dancing, however, it was with confidence and solid conviction that I decided it was time for me to leave behind this world. I knew with absolute certainty that although I would be closing an important chapter in my life, I would also be gifted with space for a brand new journey; a rare opportunity to start fresh.

 

TO START WITH A BLANK CANVAS.

 

I look back on my dance career with immense gratitude. Ballet has brought me to some of the best coaches, choreographers, dancers, artists of other mediums, as well as opportunities to perform in beautiful places around the world. I will always carry with me the crucial lessons that being a dancer has taught me; to be resilient, to hold myself to high standards in work ethic and practice, to have an unbreakable mental strength, and to always uphold the integrity and traditions of the art world. Each and every one of these valuable pieces influence me as a painter today and I am forever thankful. 

 

 

Art - be it through dancing or painting - has given me more than I could have ever imagined. When I am in the middle of a creative process the concept of time disappears. I have always shared with others that when you are an artist, you know that magic truly exists. Art creates a space for me where I can be free to explore, express, and experiment without the worries of judgment, pressure, and stress. I feel completely content when I am creating art. I feel even more blessed and ecstatic when I am able to share this joy and passion with those around me.

 

I thank you for being here today. Your interest and curiosity in my work mean the world to me. It is my sincere hope that my artwork brings you delight. Please stay connected and I would like to share my journey with you as a growing individual and artist.