Sonya Mahnic spent her formative years in Lethbridge, Alberta. From a young age, she was known for her artistic ability, but feeling the expectations to get a "real" job, played it safe and took business courses at the local community college. Armed with a business diploma, she left for Calgary, where she worked for several years for Revenue Canada before returning to school to pursue a career as an artist.
Shortly after graduating with a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree from the University of Calgary in 1991 with a double major in drawing and printmaking (lithography), her partner Mark got the chance to transfer to his home town and they left for Saint John. Once there, Sonya worked while setting up a studio and volunteering at the ABEC, Saint John's Art Centre. In the mid- 90s, Sonya and Mark decided to start a family, which then took priority, but Sonya was still able to develop her art. She has participated in group and solo shows and sold her work at various venues in Saint John (ABEC, Imperial Theatre, Handworks, The Space, Trinity Galleries) and Calgary and is currently with Citadel Gallery in Saint John and Gallery 78 in Fredericton.
She has had many private commissions over the years, and is well known for her portrait work and nudes.