Chantelle Trainor-Matties, located in British Columbia, Canada is an artist who recently graduated with her Diploma in Visual Arts with an “Outstanding Achievement” award from the School of Creative Arts at the University of the Fraser Valley. She specializes in illustration, graphic design and painting, but has also dabbled in other mediums. Trainor-Matties works for herself and does freelance and contract work for private and commercial clientele. Her work ranges from bold formline to charming cartoons to painterly realism and she has recently started to do more mural work. She participates in a variety of events such showcases, markets and trade shows and has her work displayed in multiple galleries in British Columbia.
Trainor-Matties and her husband Joshua Trainor-Matties were married in 2012 and he has always been incredibly supportive of her work and passions, they currently have a cat named Choco. They had ferrets from September 2012 to February 2020, a business (group) of four ferrets, Momo, Niku, Pabu and Kēki who have all sadly crossed the rainbow bridge over the years, rest in peace. She loves her fur kids and loosing the little weasels has taken a huge toll on her. Her ferrets are her main inspiration and she has focused a lot of her work around them and their cousins for many years, they live on in her heart and work (and social media). She has a blog dedicated to her ferrets lives, if you would like to learn more about them you can visit theferrets.ca. Other favorite subjects are the flora and fauna, pop culture, the macabre, as well as North West Coast art deriving from her Indigenous heritage of Nisg̱a’a and Métis.
She grew up not knowing a lot of her Indigenous heritage and over the last few years she has been exploring that part of her through many pathways including art. She has had many amazing opportunities such as doing graphic design work for a variety of departments within the University of the Fraser Valley, this includes designing the Indigenous Symbol for the New Student Orientation in 2019. She was also one of the artists for Nations Creations until their closure in January 2020, and had her Indigenous artwork sold on merchandise across Canada and internationally. One of her biggest accomplishments was having her design chosen for the 2019 “Pink Shirt Day” hosted by Nations Creations selling over 2500 shirts across world-wide raising over $12,500 for at risk youth. These pink shirts are now available on orangeshirtday.net raising money for the Orange Shirt Society and at risk Indigenous youth. She lives and works on Stó:lō land and has had the pleasure of working with and listening to the stories of many of the Stó:lō people.
Some current artistic goals for Trainor-Matties besides continuing a successful practice and business are to illustrate and publish a children’s book about her ferrets and create enough pieces to have a solo show focused around the Mustlidae family.
Other places you can find her:
Art Instagram | Personal Instagram | Art Facebook | Art Tumblr | Twitter | Patreon
Her studio name derives from a combination of a play on the word “ferret” and her first name. Here is a quick breakdown:
The words “Frettchen”, “Frett”, “Fret(s)” mean “Ferret” in German, Norwegian/Swedish, and Dutch/Frisian(Latvian) respectively (many of which are a part of her husbands heritage) and the “e” was changed to an “a” so the “chan” could represent “Chantelle”. It’s a name that nearly comes full circle for her, her family and her practice.
To See a Complete List of Her Work Experience Please Refer to Her Curriculum Vitae