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Saturday, March 31, 2012


Corkums Island (Sold)

I have met some amazing people here. Last week I had fresh scallops delivered to my door. This week it was lobster which was cooked as I am a sucky pants and just can't do it myself. I was also taken to the local candy store (my first ever visit). In between all that, I taught. I thought that this almost monochromatic watercolour (for me it is, considering I am a colour nut) of an Island here, was in order as the scene is local, by the ocean and  the island is as beautiful as the local people.  After learning about warhead sour candy, enough to make you pucker up and double over, I then had a lobster tail with clarified butter. Although the idea of that diet will probably make my arteries scream, it was worth it.
Long live the people of the Maritimes. Thank you so much! 

Thursday, March 29, 2012

A tactile day... some good, some just way too creepy!

Simplified Silkscreen 

As I mentioned in a previous post, I took a silk screening class. Every year at this time, I take a workshop specifically so I can bring something back to show my students. (who I know will be our future artists)  
Thus the pictures above. I did these when I arrived home. I drew them and then screened them as an example.

After picking up art supplies, I decided to visit my 2 stellar labs. I love seeing them. They are a joy. So, apparently Bedford the Old yeller lab that is so calm you can take him anywhere went to the doggie store. He likes to shop. He was offered a really cool "thing" to chew. Wouldn't let it go if his life depended on it. So upon my arrival, I was shown this particular "thing". I am calling it "thing" as at the time I was truly unaware of what it was made  of.  So you have to get the picture, of a vegetarian chick, already not totally thrilled with touching this "thing" knowing that it sure wasn't vegetable or mineral.  He handed it to me (or "mouthed" it to me) and not wanting to hurt Old yellers feelings as he was so excited with the show and tell,  I took it from him. As I was praising him and saying what a wonderful new "thing" he had discovered, I was informed that it was, how do I say this delicately, probably one of the most important things to a male. (couldn't tell, it was dried)  Now if this doesn't make all the males I know, cringe, it should.  I dropped it so fast that I broke the speed of light. Yuck! So all and all it was a very tactile day.  
P.S. Just was told that I should have informed people that it was not human!  Like it would be? hahaha     

Tuesday, March 27, 2012


Wine Labels

Don't laugh, ( I know you will) I did a series of wine labels. Unfortunately the paintings sold before I could have them printed. I thought to myself that it didn't matter as I could just do more. I did print a couple myself, and decided to stick them on some homemade wine. I even labeled them Mayhollow Estates. I guess that was back when I wasn't as busy. I gave them as gifts and they did go over quite well. Actually in truth, I gave two as gifts and the others ended up in my own wine cellar only to be served at a party I had. By the end of the evening after all the bottles were empty, the lovely labels were soaked with wine drips. I liked the look of them afterward as much as before the bottles had been opened. They looked like the wine had been enjoyed. Isn't that the whole point?

Monday, March 26, 2012

So much to do so little time....


The Ochre Door (Sold)

Are not all artists slightly insane? Sometimes we sit and stress about not painting, and then we sit and stress about having too many ideas to put on canvas. I wonder how we get anything done at all. Between all that, is life. I have 3 major projects on the go at the moment. A couple of life ones too (all good). So at this point as I sit here, it looks like one big huge overwhelming pile of artistic/life stuff. Had a great phone call today re: art proposal. Now of course I add that to the list. Yikes. Guess I better wrap my head around it all and buckle down. Notice though, that I procrastinate and decided to blog instead? Typical! Was just looking at my air miles accumulation. I better take a VK. I could go far on those.  Oh wait! Got to get this stuff done first..Then off to somewhere to paint. hmmmm...... but where? I am open to suggestions.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Workshop Weekend


Workshop Weekend

I love to take art workshops. I look forward to them and they rejuvenate me.  I come home covered in the medium the workshop used. I am quite often exhausted but run down to the studio and experiment more with that which I just studied. My hands tell the tale for days afterwards as I am famous (or infamous) for choosing the messiest of them all. Last time it involved a type of intuitive drawing with charcoal. I was oblivious to what I looked like until coming home and seeing a ring of willow charcoal dust around my nose and mouth. I truly looked as if I had been inhaling WD 40 all day.  This explains the look on the faces of the people in the wine store who really were quite reticent to sell me a good Beaujolais . No worries, they know I am an artist, caved and rang up the bill.
This weekend it was Silk Screening. The last time I did this I was a kid. Not quite as involved as this process. I loved it.  I didn't do it in my post secondary art ed. I can't wait to incorporate it into my work. Art to me is like being a perpetual kid. It's always amazing..... It connects you with life.  

Thursday, March 22, 2012

At the water

Tulips on Chair (Sold)
(I know this painting has nothing to do with my day)

Again, because of the nice weather...guess where I was? Not difficult. I sat at the beach. A van pulled up. I saw by the markings on the side that it was the local home for the aged.  I sat at the stoniest part of the waters edge as there are less people and it's quiet.  Out from the van popped  ( OK, popped is a bit extreme, perhaps slowly disembarked from the vehicle) a few seniors on an excursion to the beach.  The care giver that was in charge of this expedition, was amazing. A sense of humour to beat the band. I could hear the conversation about how they should have worn their bikini's considering all the sun we were getting and what a beautiful day it was. Hearing that, I decided that I will keep the body I have for another 40 years and wear one to the beach, much to the horror of all. 
 The dogs were there and approached in the wonderful way they do, to greet the newcomers to "their beach". They were gentle and respectful ( the dogs not the seniors. Oh, sorry, the seniors were too). I was thinking all was perfect in the world as I usually do with those proverbial rose coloured glasses that I don on almost every occasion, and lo and behold one of the seniors slips on a rock and falls. Being the ever prepared Girl Guide, (yes I was a GG) I had my trusty band aids, a sling as well 'cause you never know. My "beach mate" being the ever helpful person that he is, ran to assist. As I threw the band aids at him to take to the accident scene I thought, "Some fricken' girl guide I am". Good things always come out of things that aren't that great. After some conversation with the Care Worker, Bedford the ever faithful care dog will be visiting all the seniors at the residence. I can't wait. I will ask them if they would like a volunteer to perhaps teach some art classes. Hey, Bedford could come too! I love this...
P.S. The lady that fell was fine with just a wee scrape that a
 band aid soon fixed. 

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Scrounging around

Cows

Being in art school, I had to do many art history lessons. It's kind of fun discovering things that you had no idea that you kept (I found this in a portfolio tucked away in a closet) I remember one paper I had to do and also produce the paintings for. This drawing of cows was part of it. I wish I had more of the work that I had done then. I am sad to say (not to be melancholy about it,  I am overthat part of my life) but my ex, suffice to say, was not too happy with my departure. 
 He decided that an art bonfire was in order.  So, I lost a lot of that work.   It's so funny how people attack what they think will break your heart because they are so bitter and sad. When I first sold a painting, I remember kissing it goodbye (literally there was lipstick on the canvas).  Now, I am braver.  I am happy to see them go to a new home. What happens to them after that is up to the universe. There is one painting though, that I will always miss and it hangs in a home in Europe.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Stitches and Cloth

Abstract Ink and Acrylic on Cloth(sold)

I am careful not to become to scheduled with my life. I know people that do the same things everyday and I you know just where they will be at a certain time, where they eat and what days and times. I guess it can be comforting and all but for me it causes angst and agitation. Today after returning home from having stitches removed from  Bedford the "Old Yeller" Labs foot, I decided to take a beach run. It is quite clear that I love the beach. I would pitch a tent and live on it if possible. I didn't sketch but sat and just looked. Although the work when I came home (above) was not at all sea related, it was one of those, just do it things. I grabbed some cloth and let the moment take over. These kinds of things are good "warm ups".      

Sunday, March 18, 2012

I just had to post this.....

I know that comments must be clicked on to read... I just had to post this so it could not be missed. Here is the response to my pasta maker story...... It rocks....

Well, in response to your blog let me just begin this tirade by saying this Sicilian monstrosity (the pasta maker not the man) has not been in my cupboard but rather hidden, wrapped in a myriad of materials and stashed in the deep, dark, depths of my clothes closet. A bit of background may be helpful here. The pasta maker belonged to the mother of an ex boyfriend. One fateful night he lugged it over to my place and like a Fellini movie we made pasta and hung it to dry on coat hangers all over my apartment. Yes, like all Italian men he broke my heart one day. But time heals all and suffice to say once the sorrow of the break up wore off...translation... the inescapable feelings I had to execute a drive-by pasta maker toss though his mother’s front window (he lived at home) subsided I asked my sister if she wanted the silver machine. It is truly a beautiful culinary creation brought all the way from Sicily. This is not some cheezy Walmart knockoff. My sister was delighted to claim the rights to it. We had ,as she calls it the dance of Point A to Point B. Hah... for me more like a drunken, drug induced after hours rave. No upper class gentility here with this damn pasta machine. She wants the silver beauty as she says yet for the past 5 years I have pleaded with her take it off my hands. It is darling sister, as you call it, the mother of all machines. I’m not a big woman and this albatross weighs heavily on me. I’m preparing to move and have no inclination to pack it up and take it with me only to hide it in my clothes closet again. Yet I realize the value of this Italian machine and it’s just too beautiful and valuable to be put out for the dumpster divers to scavenge. So growing weary and after these 5 years today I made what was, yes sister, the difficult decision to ask my friends on Facebook if anyone was willing to take the silver monster on (the pasta maker not my sister). Which brings me to my infamous Facebook posting today and to my dear sister’s plea for someone to please, for the love of pasta, deliver this silver machine to that deprived pasta maker town of M’Bay and to deliver it gently to her doorstep. My neck will thank you as I know my sister will as she spends hours and hours hypnotically rolling out pasta dough and transforming it into beautiful smooth white noodles of all shapes and sizes. Me...I’m looking for another Italian sans pasta maker. Just sayin’ is all.

I Want That Pasta Maker!

Italy (2010) Sold

I have been making my own pasta for a bit now, by hand I might add.  My sister has a pasta maker that has been in her cupboard for a while. It has become somewhat of a joke that I want it with a passion. I am on the East Coast and she lives in Ontario. The logistics of getting that heavy monster from point A to Point B has been a dance for a few years now. I just found her posting it on her facebook page. Oh the horror!   I would love to have the gorgeous Italian man sent with it as her friends suggest..however, I am willing to settle for just the silver mother of all machines. The work of hanging each hand cut strand of pasta on hangers in my kitchen sounds authentic and romantic but in reality, it bites the big one. Please oh please for the love of pasta, someone bring me that pasta maker!

Friday, March 16, 2012

Lunenburg (Sold)

Evening In Old Town (Lunenburg, Nova Scotia Canada)
(Sold)

I remember moving to the Maritimes 14 years ago. I stayed at a place I call the "Dog Bite Motel", while I waited to rent another place on the sea until the closing of the house I purchased.  One week in the "Dog Bite" and I truly wondered what the hell I had done. The motel was christened this as my amazing super dog Barclay, was lunged at by the proprietors dog. I was out gathering supplies for the tiny dingy kitchen in the place, and my spouse heroically, jumped in to save my "boy". He ended up with his arm in a sling  bitten to smithereens. As we sat on the couch, I watched as Barclay slowly crept up beside his newly found hero and gently rested his head on the big blue sling as if to say.."thank you for saving me dude". It's funny but this painting always reminds me of this. Don't know why....... 

Thursday, March 15, 2012

An artists studio

My Studio or part of......

Yesterday I went on a hunt for a large piece of board for painting. I stopped at my local (Nova Scotia Building Supplies aka Castle Building and Hardware) store. The father of one of my students happens to be in charge of  that department. Talk about helpful. Not only did I sputter away about certain kinds of wood and boards not being suitable, but I continued  to use my own strange language such as " I can't use that 'cuz it's  too "warpy".  What an understanding man. In the end, his words were. "leave it to me". The next day two perfect painting boards were delivered by the kind delivery gentleman from the store (I  might add, with a huge smile). As I turned up my music to an extreme decibel, I primed them. All the while thinking, there are such great people out there! 

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

My immediate wishes and thoughts.



This is a doodle produced tonight as I ate my dinner. After being out today, and not paying any attention to the weather, I found myself having to make my way home in freezing rain, freezing roads etc. etc. I hate driving in nasty stuff.  However, I do seem to make it home without a scratch each time it happens. (as I type this my fingers are crossed. Figure that little trick out!)  All I want to do is slip into a huge bubble bath and get  into my wonderfully warm bed. Ahh.. the perfect end to a hazardous drive home! 

Monday, March 12, 2012

It could have been a beach day today!

(Sold)

It was an incredible day here today. It would have been the perfect beach day, but sometimes there is just way too much to do. So while I filled out forms for art things, made phone calls as well as received them, did some gardening, attempted to come up with an amazing lesson for my students on Emily Carr, (I did!) it just wasn't to be. Whoever thinks that artists don't work hard are wrong. (PM Harper) My plan was to paint today. Tomorrow.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Lesson learned from J.P

Students work on Jackson Pollock (Sold)

Each class I teach at my studio, I teach art history. I think it is so important for children to learn about those who came before them. It must be approached in a way that is fun. Today, they studied Jackson Pollock. Ok, so I didn't share the troubled side of J.P. but they, as they grow older will find that out on their own. After convincing them that passing away at the age of 44 wasn't old at all, they (while I cleaned up the floor and loved every minute of it) collaborated on this work above. I decided I would post it and someone who has an eye and an appreciation  for the arts, has now purchased it. It just so happened that one of the art students in the class today called me and I told her the good news. She was so excited. The word used (as I use as well) was "awesome".  The best part of the class was when all was completed and framed, we sat on the floor around this work of art, and listened to each other speak of what we saw in this painting. This is the stuff that makes me happy. Sure, I lock myself out of the house, do a lot of crazy stuff that half the time makes no sense to me... but painting and sharing the love of art is truly living!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

An Artist and an Athlete

Poppies 2 (Sold)

 I am recovering from locking myself out of the house. I never knew how athletic I was until now. Yes I did the ballerina stuff when I was younger, played volleyball and a little (and I stress little) bit of skiing. I never knew how people could move cars off their loved ones in an accident. I guess it's the power of, well, love. In this case, it was the power of the love of getting back into a warm house and having a glass of wine.
Watching someone climb up a trellis that thankfully was built securely, in an artists apron is a sight to behold. Thank god it was dark out.  Am I the only one this stuff happens to?  I now sit here with yes, that well deserved glass of godly nectar. I am such a bloody trooper that I will paint now that my fingers have thawed.   
P.S.   1:30 am- my sister says I am a Charlies Angel hahaha...OOOYA feel like one now! 

Monday, March 5, 2012



New York City Windows
( Abstract Mixed Medium Sold)

Sunday, March 4, 2012

The Seamstress and Her Struggles

Sails (Mixed Medium Sold)
As I love working with mixed medium, I decided that I would introduce my young students to the same. So I thought creating sailboats using a mixture of paper mache, cloth, gesso, paint, glazes etc. would be just the thing. 
I am not a task master when it comes to teaching. I love people to thoroughly enjoy what they are doing to the point where I will actually do the non creative parts of their project. I know, probably not the best thing to do when teaching. Not to worry,  all that stuff they will have to do on their own later.
 I like to break people in slowly, then they don't lose their love for art before it has begun. So that being said, I decided I would sew their painted sails myself. Each sail they created (using real sail cloth) was so beautifully painted that when I sat down to the sewing machine (yikes!) I went into a state of panic. What if I sew these with the wrong measurements (which I am hopeless at on a good day) and ruin the hand painted sails that these little darlings have so painstakingly produced? So I pour myself a glass of wine, which turned into two. Then I decided that two glasses of wine do not  mix with the sewing machine. Fear not, I knew that I should put the wee sails down and stop for the day. As my favourite heroin says, "tomorrow is another day".(Gone With The Wind) I wonder if  Scarlett actually sewed those curtains for the dress she wore. Surely she was smart enough not to attempt it after a couple of glasses of wine! 

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Squeals of Delight

East Coast Flowers  (Watercolour and Ink) Sold

I ventured out today to find a specific birthday present for my Dad. I "hitched a ride" with a friend and headed to the nearest Staples store. It is exciting that they set up shop in my neck of the woods. I know, not a big deal in most places but here, Ikea doesn't exist so you get the idea.  I would think that says it all.
Not sure how people put up with me when I am excited about such gadgets as paper shredders, coloured post it notes, and coloured markers. There I am, walking down every isle and really, squealing at almost everything I come across. Now, I know my friend is one of the dearest people and has the patience of moss in the woods but I really couldn't blame them for trying to avoid the same isle I was in.  Pretending to wonder off to look at other things (which I know they didn't really want), I do know that they kept an eye on me at a safe distance just in case I went into overload and started jumping up and down with excitement  possibly hurting myself. Aha my safety net. This is a true friend and I love them for it!     

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