Archives for category: BC

Squash web

Even though my mind is moving toward Italy, I haven’t ignored this beautiful coast summer. I have spent pleasant hours on my pretty back deck, enjoying my flower filled pots and O’Keeffe inspired wall art.

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I  scooted to the Roberts Creek pier and had a fine 2 hours of sketching the copper roofed house across the creek.

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But the best day of all was when instead of going up the lane back home,  I unexpectedly turned the shoprider down towards the lookout at the end of my road and started a sketch of the view. Suddenly, I heard a huge whooshing blow – a woman on the beach below started yelling “The Whale!! The Whale!!” so I peeled out to a more open point and there it was. Or at least there was the spray and a huge hump of a grey back, moving slowly, following the tide line toward Sechelt.

I could feel it – I’m sure.

Mesmerizing.

Magic.

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A great day indeed.

 

 

 

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My Grandmother Ruby used to carry scissors in her purse when she went out for a walk. She loved flowers, she grew them on her balcony and often had a little bouquet on her table. Over the years we spent many a pleasant day wandering in the garden centre and planting up her small riotously colour-filled boxes.  But cut flowers were a different story.  Oh she wanted them, in the early spring when the sky was grey, and hers were months from being ready – but she would not pay for them. Besides, she had a Law that if any flower extended into any walkway, it was common property.

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That included any that could be hooked with a cane and pulled over to the sidewalk. This could sometimes be an embarrassing situation for me, causing me to rapidly walk ahead, which amused her. I myself, purchased my flowers at full price.

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However, I have lately found my thinking to be more in line with hers.

I have looked up that Law, and I believe she was correct.

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Opera gouache

I call it the Law of Unauthorized Pruning for Art’s Sake.

 

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The first real weather of the season is rolling in. Colour? Gunmetal. Payne’s Grey. Ivory black. Smudged charcoal. And I feel a kind of a thrill. Long ago, at the beginning of my painting, I spent 2 years using only black and white paint. Like Georgia O’Keeffe, I later read. Greys? I have them…..

Contemporary bodies..

Medici chapel pose detailblog

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Art Historical re-imaginings… I can still hear my Art History professor Josephine Jungic (also my friend, so missed) saying – “oh, what have you done to Duccio??”.. with a smile…

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More recent details made large, and a lesson learned – when you buy black paint, from anywhere, make sure you buy enough – black is never the same black. Ever.

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Jenny's Notteblog

I wish I knew where this painting was……….. a rare loss. I try to know where all my children of the soul have gone.

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Is it my destiny to love this coast so much?

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All I know is, I don’t fear the grey. I think it is most subtle, silvery, deep. And full of potential. We need dark to understand light, as simple as that, and as complex.

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Bear Mask

Telegraph Cove Resort is a perfect little horseshoe of magic, if you happen to be in the process of learning a new way to travel. I mull over a few different ways to tell you about this journey to the far north end of Vancouver Island… such as — Was it a Sketch Voyage, A Soul Journey, A personal Wobbly Marathon? I could say much about these aspects and probably will in future posts, but right now I’ll just try to keep it simple.

It was Fabulous and Fun….!!!

It looked like this from our window:

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And this:

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It was so concentrated, and I could scooter around every bit except for the small entrance to the marina – almost a full circle of boardwalk. Voices laughing, hints of French and German amongst the conversations, not a TV in hearing or sight. Eagles and Ravens and Bears.. and more. Rustic, historic, and bags of charm. Peace and quiet.

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A bit of a surprise to herself, my companion Kim learned to sketch. She is already a maker of fabulous encaustic books, I didn’t think it was much of a stretch.

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Sketching and bookmaking in the Restaurant

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Kim’s sketch of a Kayak

I can’t travel the way I used to, but it is a big fat waste of time to work up a misery over that fact. Better to embrace the extra planning, the limitations-that-aren’t and ignore any pinchy faces – mine included. There are many magical places yet to be found, without and within. It was hard……. and it was easy, and many people made it happen, so lucky am I.

Heartfelt thanks to the Supreme Helpers of Freedom:

Travel companion, Gimpy driver and Sherpa – Kim Oka and her Pug Ruby.

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The generous loan of the Ford Escape  with Air Con!! by Jenny.

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All the sweet people who lifted/pushed the scoot every time I was stuck. Which was alot. You all wandered off as if it was nothing 🙂

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Julie. You know. ❤

 

 

 

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On the longest day of the year I sat in my sun-filled yard and sketched this blackberry flower. There are scads of them, a gajillion, I would say, their robust prickled vines snake out and grow visibly as I sit there – at least it seems so. I believe we are in for a bumper crop this summer, which is very good, because once they are picked, bagged and frozen they will be most welcome on the shortest day of the year.

Mourning cloak blog

Last June one of these beautiful friends landed on my shoulder.

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It was a lovely surprise, but I didn’t think too much about it, I just thought it had been battered and tattered in the cool wind and rain. This spring, when I saw a fresh strong butterfly in the shrubs around the Arts Centre in Sechelt, I did a little digging

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They are born with the tatters, they are native, and were possibly given the poetic name “Mourning Cloak” by Scandinavian or German settlers, though no explanation as to why. It doesn’t matter, I love the name. I also think it amusing that Nymphalis Antiopa is a brush-footed butterfly, called this due to their hairy front legs. 🙂

Tiger moth blog

First Rule for surviving the inevitable miserable portion of a BC Coast winter: don’t look out of the window. Seriously, anywhere else but. Or you might see this:

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..or this:

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You are probably saying to yourself, Oh look, Snow – how pretty! Just what I said… for five minutes. This is not that pretty kind of snow – this snow is wet and slushy and heavy and brings down the tree limbs onto power lines so that you are stoking the woodfire all night long to keep the deep, damp chill at bay. Very Icky. No ShopRider is going down the ramp, and a wobbly person like me is definitely not going to try to maneuver in the frozen muck. A soaking wet ass is not good for a person’s dignity, best to avoid the extremely high probability in this weather.

So, once the blankets are hung over the draughty windows, (you think I’m exaggerating, don’t you?) I find it best to turn my gaze to faraway places. Luckily, I have friends who Travel. For instance, Lisa at sell your tv and come to the cinema has just spent a marvellous two months in India, and I could not resist sketching the most beautiful moth she saw on the wall where she was teaching.  The exotic sights of Ahmedabad will sooth a shivery soul.

And Julie, over at Kitchen Culinaire is gearing up for her yearly trip to Paris, so pictures of Madelines and markets and the Eiffel Tower are gracing my laptop monitor… dreamy!  A lucky group of people are in for a tour of great deliciousness, and I will be following along every step of the way. She might even spy another stamp shop while she is there and think, “I know someone who would want these..”

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Speaking of postal inspiration, I have even received a postcard from Myanmar this winter – I’m pretty sure this cancelled stamp is as close as I will ever be to this enigmatic country. Though never say never…

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I affix these happy bits of travel to the board in my thinking room. A nice warm fire cheers up the house, and colour fills my grateful eyes.

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In fact, last night when I was absentmindedly staring up from a drawing, my eye caught a corner of vintage pale blue… but I couldn’t think who had sent me this bit of Florida sunshine.

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I flipped it over, and was reminded of a particularly difficult birthday, and the warmth of many friends who made it completely better.

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Winter? What winter… in fact did you know the light is already coming back??

 

 

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Blog post 100.

A new sketchbook to begin the New Year.

A deep feeling that journeys, of the inner and the outer kind, will fill 2014 with days that are always creatively engaging…..

Be Here Now… because Here is Fantastic.

 

 

 

Broken butterfly blog

The original tattered butterfly was a gift from a friend, more than a couple of years ago. “Hey, I found this on the front of my car.. thought I would save it for you.”

My friends know me well.

 

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…on their way out the door…

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Now for studio clean up. Yikes!