You may have seen Lynn Dooly Marek on the flock sporting her collection of granate Duckfeet, her drawings of Lyndybin or captures of teaching illustration at Durham College in Ontario, Canada. We were so inspired by her that we wanted to reach out and tell her story for all to hear!
The Quest for Duckfeet
Lynn had worn shoes that were similar to Duckfeet from a young age. In fact while she was in her twenties backpacking through Europe she made a sketch in her sketchbook of a pair of these dreamy boots she found in Holland. Once those worn out she spent many many years searching for a replacement.
Luck struck her one day about fifty years after her sketch and she found Duckfeet through google. Odense in granate were what perfectly replaced her old pair. She shares that in Odense are “wonderful and totally cute and comfortable and people stop me to ask what they are.”
From Black to Granate
Lynn spent the majority of her life wearing black. She lives in Toronto, Canada and it wasn’t until her son suggested that she start wearing colors other than her uniform black that her granate collection began.
Lyndybin was Lynn’s given nickname growing up (by her parents) and this character represents Lynn—Lyndybin is her movement. Her thesis was a book of Lyndybin learning how to dance as illustration dancing whimsical on a page!
Lyndybin always had red shoes on that looked just like Duckfeet shoes, she’s a delight and now that Lynn and all of her shoes are red it’s a coming full circle moment, she says “Lyndybin’s shoes have become real!”
All Day in Duckfeet
Lynn’s Duckfeet collection is one for the ages and is highlighted so beautifully by this green carpet! We love to see how Lynn works all of her collection (which now includes one black pair as well) into her life drawing class, daily life, and illustrations.
She adds, “when teaching all day, I am standing and walking around for 7 hours...I wear nothing but Duckfeet on my feet...I had spinal surgery and have screws in my lower spine...these shoes and boots are THE best footwear if you have back issues.”
Spinal surgery started the pivot from a career selling fabric patterns to going back for a degree in illustration—Lynn was learning with young students and discovered she loved working with that age group.
Lynn firmly believes that as we get older it is our duty to pass on our knowledge to the next generation!
Not a Starving Artist…
Lynn tells the story of how her Bistro & Marché (market) of the World’ came to be. In her words…
When I lived in France, in Aix-en-Provence in the south of France, I studied at the École des Beaux Arts. One Friday I went to the bank to take some money out for the weekend and food. The teller said “pas d’ argent' in my account. I was shocked. Dad couldn’t wire me money until Monday…I had no money for food.
So…I went to the best cafe on the Coers Mirabeau, the Main Street in Aix with lots of cafes lining the street. I said to the owner…if I do a painting of your cafe, will you pay me $20. He said yes. I went back to my atelier (with a skylight, it was above a French bakery), got my art stuff, returned, sat down in front of the cafe and painted it. He paid me my $20 and then I could buy food. I was thrilled that someone paid me money for my art.
That began my series called ‘Bistro & Marché (market) of the World’ that was very successful, even to this day.
When Lynn isn’t teaching animation you’ll likely catch her adventuring, visiting with her lovely two children, or hanging with her 10-year-old granddaughter.
We’d be remiss not to mention her adopted dog Lucy who is as colorful and fun as Lynn. They take long walks together always choosing the comfort and colorful Duckfeet to support their journey.
Lynn, you inspire us and we love learning more about how you enlighten your students. Keep brightening up the world with your granate colored vibrance!