Forget that high-school stereotype where the artists and the jocks don’t mix—Tiffany Lynn Cuffley has always been an athlete and a creative. Before painting became her full-time gig, Cuffley was a professional figure skater. “My artistic process is very intuitive and abstract, and I think that stems from my skating background,” says the Calgary-based muralist. Her work strikes a fine balance between structure and spontaneity.

One canvas piece, for example—commissioned by a couple who are also former professional skaters—involved Cuffley studying the ice patterns the couple make when they skate together. “I took those markings that were left on the ice, documented them and used them in my painting,” Cuffley explains. Another of her mural projects, created for a family that loves to ski, is inspired by the colours and silhouettes of the mountains. Clients often suggest a certain palette or passion that’s personal to them, and Cuffley combines their ideas with her own abstract flair. “We’re seeing murals more and more in homes—people really want to make their space unique,” says the artist.

Besides private residences, Cuffley’s work is also splashed across Alberta’s public and commercial spaces: think a graphic mural for a pizza place, a geometric statement wall for a digital consultant studio or a gorgeous pink-and-blue behemoth of a painting that blankets a downtown Calgary real estate company building. Her projects range from small canvas paintings to large-scale art. “I love to work in multiple different areas, whether that be public, residential, commercial—all of it,” says Cuffley. “I want art to be accessible and available to everyone.”

This story was originally published in the November/December 2023 print issue of Western Living magazine.