Evelyn (Evy) McBryan was born in England in 1911 and came to Alberta with her family in 1918. Before attending the Vancouver School of Art in 1936, she studied art from Euphemia (Betty) McNaught. She subsequently took short courses at the University of Alberta and was influenced by instructors Doug Barry, H.G. Glyde, and J.B. Taylor.
McBryan worked tirelessly to make the arts a reality in the Peace Region of Alberta. In 1960, she served on the provincial Board of Culture and the Visual Arts Board. In 1964, she became the Arts and Crafts Coordinator for the City of Grande Prairie, a position she held for ten years. In 1973, she was appointed to the Alberta Art Foundation Board, where she established a school exhibition program and was responsible for organizing the Peace Region Arts Council. For her contributions to the province of Alberta, Mrs. McBryan, in 1976, received the prestigious Alberta Achievement Award.