KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — A Maryville artist started as a child drawing birds with stick legs. Now, she’s the talent behind a bluebird wings mural for Anakeesta’s new BirdVenture and lots of other projects you may recognize.

When we visited her downtown Maryville art gallery, Pinkie Mistry was putting the finishing touches on her latest project for a local pediatrician’s office. Her goal is to bring pops of color and a touch of whimsy to woodland creatures.

“They wanted animals,” Mistry explained. “They wanted a theme, so we did Smoky Mountain animals, of course.”

Her love of the natural beauty of East Tennessee led to murals of colorful butterfly wings like one you’ve probably seen in downtown Sevierville. Her latest mural is Bluebird Wings at Anakeesta’s new upcoming attraction “Birdventure.” For her, it was a weekend project.

“It’s for kids so it’s smaller, say a four-foot size kid,” she said. “But for adults, squat down, sit down, whatever!” she said. “Birdventure is like treehouses for kids. You go up in it, and then they slide down so as they go back up the steps. The mural will be there.”

In Mistry’s art gallery, you’ll find several paintings depicting Smoky Mountain scenes, from an abstract of Mt. LeConte with a deer peeking through the trees to a serene scene of a swimming hole.

“The Swimming Hole is what I call it. It’s actually the swimming hole where we go to, it’s in the National Park and it’s a secret so I can’t tell you where it’s at,” Mistry laughed. “It’s actually the second one I’ve done. The first one sold this past winter.”

Mistry also supports the community through her art, creating beautiful wine labels for fundraisers and art supporting breast cancer research. She also created a memorable dress made of copper wiring for this year’s Construction Couture fashion show and fundraiser for Blount County Habitat for Humanity.

It’s just one more example of Mistry’s dedication to helping others and reminding everyone of the beauty that surrounds us here at home.

“We live in a little paradise,” she said. “That’s what I feel, anyway.”

Pinky Mistry’s Art Gallery can be found at 106 East Broadway in downtown Maryville.