On Dragon Wings Studio is an artist collective consisting of Shelly, Emma and Connor Hawley-Yan. We're glad you're here - let us introduce ourselves!
My name is Shelly Hawley-Yan and I have been creating and designing scale miniatures for many years now. I have always had an interest in art and a special interest in nature. (I was the kid who brought home toads, injured birds, stray puppies - you name it!) I have an honors BSc in Biochemistry from the University of Waterloo, Ontario, and a Master Herbalist diploma from Wild Rose College, in Calgary, Alberta.
After graduating from Waterloo, I joined the Centre of Forensic Sciences in Toronto, where I worked as a Forensic Biologist. I worked for Animal Alliance of Canada for more than 22 years rescuing dogs and cats and in February 2020 started my own rescue called Compassion For Paws. Because of this, we usually have several "creature visitors" being fostered in our house. I have also taught at the Botanic Institute, an herbal school in Guelph, and currently teach multiple musical instruments at Broadway Music in Orangeville, and online at Heart Equine Academy,
I feel that my scientific background enables me to look more critically at my illustrations, and gives them greater scientific accuracy and and believability. Although I work in several media; scratchboard, colored pencil, aquarelle, and screen printing, my first love is ink, black or colored, using both stippling and line drawing, often with watercolor added. Some of my work is in a more graphic style, but I generally prefer highly detailed images.
My subject matter is almost always from the natural world; animals, herbs, and children, as well as illustrations incorporating knotwork.
My work has appeared in The Canadian Journal of Herbalism, The Journal of Family Life, The Guilded Herb, on the covers (and interiors) of the Compleat Mother, Homebase, and the Doula magazines, in the Birth Gazette, on advertising material for Media Watch and in numerous publications for Animal Alliance of Canada. I have won awards from the American Orchid Society and the National Anti-Vivisection Society, and have had work featured on a number of note cards and greeting cards, including a 1995 Christmas card for Save The Children. I have been the featured illustrator in the publication for the Guild of Natural Science Illustrators. I have had several images featured in the books, Booby Juice, a collection of breastfeeding art, poetry and literature and in Images of Breastfeeding Worldwide, a resource book published by the World Alliance For Breastfeeding Action (WABA) and UNICEF. My needlepoint designs have appeared in American Miniaturist, Dollshouse and Miniature Scene, and the now defunct Dolls House Artisan. For many years I have accepted commissions for pet portraiture. I am currently working on a children's book, that employs very complex, highly detailed pictures.
I live and play just outside the Toronto, ON area, with my family and companion dogs, cats, birds and small creatures.
I would love to be considered for custom work- especially projects that focus on animals,or children and the incredible world around us.
Thanks for stopping by!
My name is Emma Hawley-Yan and I am Shelly's daughter! I love creating art, camping, hiking, climbing trees, hugging animals, watching bunnies eating dandelions, binge-watching Netflix, making and eating vegan yummies, watching my vegetables grow, and tending to my plant babies. I've always loved creating art but only in the past few years have I really started giving myself the time to create on a daily basis and share my art with others!
I graduated from the University of Waterloo with a B.Sc. Honours Biology degree, a B.E.S. Honours Environment, Resources and Sustainability degree, and a diploma in Ecological Restoration and Rehabilitation.
I recently started a vegan food business in Toronto with my partner Rob and brother Connor, called Sweet Po (named after one of our amazing house bunnies!)
And now I'm here to share my art with you! I paint mostly animals and nature, I'm putting my degrees to good use, right? Let's go with that!
I love working in watercolour, acrylic inks, pen, pencil crayon, and GLITTER. Always lots of glitter. I currently call Toronto home and share an apartment with my lovely partner Rob, our fur babies Razzy, Po, and Obie, my brother Connor, our vermicomposting worms, and probably way too many house plants.
I am so excited to share my art with you, and am sincerely grateful that you might come along for the ride. Thank you for the continued support!
My name is Connor Hawley-Yan and Shelly is my mother. I have always been into creating art, but have only begun pursuing it seriously in the past few years. After a year of nanotech engineering at the University of Waterloo, I decided that it really wasn't my passion and went to school at Sheridan studying Visual Creative Arts. Having much better mental health there, I was able to actually be excited to develop my skills and thrive. Now after graduation, my goal is to get into a tattoo apprenticeship to further develop my skills and have a job that really doesn't feel like one!
I create my artworks using various mediums, though of particular interest to me currently are oil paints, graphite, ink, and I am currently experimenting with some digital paintings/edits.
I enjoy the beauty of the natural world and feel that we should take the time to slow down and look at it every chance we get. I try to incorporate natural elements in my work such as trees and animals, even when they are not necessarily the focus of the piece. I believe that art is a form of escape, not dissimilar to the joy people get from taking a break from their life and going for a walk through a forest.
Nature is a constant source of inspiration for me and is what really got me into art to begin with, as a kid I was always drawing flora, especially trees. I have always felt a strong connection to nature and its immense beauty, and my works seek to bring out that fascination in others. I feel that society has lost touch with nature and there are many distractions and white noise in the world that we often forget to enjoy the simple things. I hope my art brings some joy into your life and reminds you to stop and smell the roses!
Thanks for stopping by and for supporting our artistic endeavours!
My name is Sweet Potato Hawley-Yan-Lewin, but you can call me Po! I am the Contest Coordinator and prettiest member of On Dragon Wings Studio. I live in Toronto with my mom (Emma), dad (Rob), and uncle (Connor). I like the art that my family makes, and I don't even eat any of it because I am a very good boy. My favourite art they ever did is my portrait because I am so pretty and I like being the centre of attention.
I help choose winners when we run contests, and no one does a better job than me. You can see me choosing contest winners on our Instagram page. Maybe if you enter one of our contests I'll choose you next!
When I'm not hard at work as Contest Coordinator, I enjoy going for walks around the neighbourhood in my stylish pink stroller, throwing toilet paper tubes around, playing with crinkle paper, eating carrots and broccoli stems, zooming and binkying up and down the hallway, cuddling in bed, and making forts behind the curtains.
My newest job is being the inspiration and Employee of the Month (every month!) at Sweet Po Vegan Eats!
Our names are Raspberry and Aubergine Hawley-Yan-Lewin, but you can call us Razzy and Obie. We also live in Toronto with our mom, dad, and uncle, and we are interns at On Dragon Wings Studio. We like the art that our family makes, but even more than that, we like eating paper so we're only interns and don't get very much responsibility. Mostly we cuddle at Emma's feet when she's painting.
Our favourite things to do are cuddling, sleeping, napping, flopping dramatically, eating hay, chewing everything in sight, pulling the stuffing out of our beds, and occasionally binkying just a little bit.