The above photo was sent to me by my inlaws..... a visitor they received on their deck the other day.
I'm in the studio today and yeah, online too. Trying to get together a blurb, photo and some jpegs of my work for the Images Studio Tour which begins in October. Can't quite wrap my head around that seeing it is February but there is a ton of work that goes into pulling that tour together every year and they do need to get started as soon as possible. I'm lucky enough to be paired up with Hartley Woodside again this year so I'm pretty excited about that. I'm also looking into applying for the McMichael Autumn Art Show which takes place a couple weeks after Images which means I better get into the studio and off Facebook, Twitter and all the other crazy distractions that take up way too much time.
This past weekend, just as last year, we hosted an International Student who is currently attending the University of Toronto. We were lucky enough to host the wonderful Sophia from Bologna, Italy who is working on her Masters in Women's Studies. No one I know loves the snow as much as Sophia as she told me she would rather walk on snow than on a beach full of sand. I wish I could agree but right about now that sand is sounding pretty damn good to me.
The International Student Weekend brings together 31 students from 31 different countries for two days of outdoor activities like skating, tobogganing, snow tubing etc. Some of these kids have never seen snow and in many ways seeing it through their eyes is like seeing it for the first time all over again. I can't tell you what an experience it was for my girls to learn and to speak with students from all over the world......Australia, Turkey, Iran, Denmark, Egypt, West Africa, Ukraine, Russia, England, Mexico etc. For two days I had the pleasure of watching all these countries together coexisting, having fun and it gave me a taste of what world peace could be and believe me, it was so very sweet.
I was so thrilled to find out that Angie and Mohammed, my friends from last year were participating again this year. Angie and I have kept in touch and sometime this spring we'll be heading down to Toronto for one of her homecooked Egyptian dinners.......can't wait! Here's some pics from the weekend.
Me, Mohammed & Angie
The girls and Yin and Yin from China
Sophia's First Ride on A Snowmobile
The girls and Simon from England, Sophia and Lilly from Portugal
Sierah and Yin
Final Group shot before getting on the bus and heading back to Toronto
Last week I was sorting through one of the many baskets in my studio which holds my cotton and canvas and low and behold came across some silk I had forgotten about. I immediately decided to give it a shot just so I could gauge the difference between it and my regular cotton. The above is the result. Once again, hard to see in a jpeg but the paint absolutely glistens on the silk and it was great to work with. I've already got another piece stretched out and ready to begin which is what I'll work on today.
A bit of a departure for me but I'm playing around with a stormy sky over a field filled with yellow wildflowers. I'm excited to begin so off to the studio............
Sunday morning the girls and I woke up to heart shaped strawberry pancakes with our names artfully spelled out in chocolate.......courtesy of John. Delicious?? of course and quite "sweet" both in the sugary way as well as the sentimental. Having said that, John and I are not over the top Valentine's Day people mostly because I'm of the belief that February 14th shouldn't be the only day your kind, loving and generous to your significiant other. A little bit everyday goes a long way. I can say that with some authority having been married for over 20 years and still going....
On Monday which was a holiday here aptly named "Family Day", my sister in law and brother in law invited us up to their cottage on Georgian Bay for lunch and a friendly game of hockey.
This year I simply can't bring myself to complain about winter at all. No a whole lot of snow to talk about and plenty of sun. This morning I practiced yoga in front of my bedroom window and enjoyed feeling the warmth of it on my face. Reminds me that spring isn't that far away.
On the art front I'm currently working on three different pieces. Two landscapes and one in which I'm experimenting on painting on primed canvas and overlaying my wools and silks. I'm naturally excited about this but it remains to be seen whether the end result is what I was envisioning. I really like the fact that I haven't as of yet gotten complacent in my work. I enjoy trying to figure out different ways in which I can continue to work in my medium realizing that the medium still holds much to be discovered. I wouldn't say that it means I'm all that creative but just that I get bored easily.
My oven has been on the "fritz" for the past few days and today is the first in which it has been operational so I'm taking advantage of that and baking a lemon loaf. Can't say I'm all that thrilled with cooking but I've always loved to bake as there just seems to be something so meditative in baking. Did I mention I also love sugar and chocolate...that could be another reason.
So before I say au revoir (I'm reading "My Life In France" by Julia Child at the moment and it is fabulous. As one reviewer pointed out "It's not just a book about food but a book about a life...a glorious life" and I agree) here's one of my new favourite blogs......Tiny Buddha.
Keep the sun on your face because spring isn't that far away...........
The Village Gallery has been on my "gallery radar" for quite some time now. Whenever I'm searching out potential new representation I'm always looking for what would be a good fit for not only me but for the gallery as well. The Village Gallery appealed to me in a big way as I like the caliber of artists they represent and I love how progressive Alison Goodwin the owner is when it comes to getting her artist's work seen. Everything from Art Blooms to The Interior Design Show in Toronto to their Pop Up Gallery...... to me that is a gallery that's working for the artist and I want to be a part of that.
I had submitted to them back in early November and once I had firmed up the Cityline gig I sent Alison an email letting her know I'd be on the show. Ironically enough so were they. They were going to be there representing one of their artists, Alison Hodson. That's where I met Megan Cornwall who is the Art Consultant for the gallery. We got along famously and I looked forward to meeting with Alison at some point down the road. Well that road ended on Saturday when I walked into the gallery with six of my pieces (yes, I had an appointment) and met not only Alison but Jackie, Mallory and Bonnie who were all in the middle of a morning meeting. Everything for me clicked right away as they were so kind and so generous in their praise of my work. There is nothing better than having a gallery as excited about what you do as you are. I hope they didn't think I was a freak though because I was talking a lot and perhaps even rambling at one point but I'm a pretty social girl and when I get pumped up about something there's no stopping me.
The craziest thing happened when Mallory who is interning with the gallery and who is also taking Art & Art History at the University of Toronto, asked where I lived. Just so happens in some "the world is a small place" type of way that her parents live right down the street from me. She happens to know pretty much all the people I know but then again I do live in a village of only 300 people so that might not be too hard.
Anyway, Alison kept four of my pieces for the gallery, my work will be shown in their monthly newsletter in March and at their opening of Art Blooms on April 24th.
The Red Earth is definitely one of my favourite pieces. Hard to see the texture or vibrancy of the red groundcover here but if I do say so myself.....it is beautiful. This week I'll have to head up to Woodside Gallery to pick it up as Hartley closes up in the winter and doesn't reopen until March or April. As I had mentioned before I'll be in Toronto this weekend meeting with a new gallery so I'd like to have it with me.
On a whole other topic, my oldest daughter just got her license yesterday which is exciting but terrifying at the same time. She is a confident and careful driver but everytime she leaves with the car my heart is in my throat. I'm sure that will change over time or knowing me, maybe not.
Life is nothing if it's not about change. The sooner we get on board the smoother the ride.