The Valley Echo and Pioneer are delighted to have a new salesperson on board this year.

Bette Segstro is filling in a maternity leave for Angela Krebs for the duration of 2014. Bette and her husband’s recent move to Radium Hot Springs is in some ways a return to the mountains for both, as they were raised in Calgary.

Bette attended the Alberta College of Art, but then later moved to Toronto, where she raised her family. When she was 42 years old, Bette decided to go back to school, graduating from Sheridan College in computer animation.

Art was in her blood — Bette not only taught classical animation at Sheridan after graduating, but also opened her own art school — Sm’ART.

“My idea of art is based on the intuitive way of seeing with the artist’s eye. If you’re drawing a chair, you don’t just see a chair, you see form and light,” said Bette. “Once you learn to see things in that way, it changes everything.”

Bette has written a series of Dr. Suess-style children’s books (including Sammy’s Jammies, Open the Door of the Checkerboard Floor and Willliam Whoops a Zerk), but those eager to read them will have to wait a bit as Bette still needs to finish the illustrations to complete them.

As well as writing books, Bette does a lot of painting and drawing (portraits, caricatures, cartoons and illustration in oils, acrylics and graphite) and from 2008 to 2011 wrote, published and produced Sage magazine.

One of her favourite jobs over the years was working in the advertising department of the Hudson’s Bay Company.

“It was a blast,” she said. In 2010 she moved to the Grande Prairie area to reunite with the man who is now her husband. He first proposed to Bette when she was 18. She said no at the time and few weeks later, he joined the RCMP. The two had no contact for 42 years, but when they finally did get in touch, they picked up where they left off — Bette moved to his farm outside Grande Prairie and they got married.

Her husband sold the farm this past December and the couple bought a home in Radium.

“We both just needed to get back home to the mountains,” she said. Her husband’s family has had a cabin in Windermere since 1964, so the valley is not exactly new ground for the couple.

Those interested in contacting Bette about advertising in the Valley Echo or the Pioneer or about any of many other creative talents can reach her at 250-341-6299 or advertising@invermerevalleyecho.com .