Sunday, 21 August 2011


Well, it’s been more than a week since I promised to make an entry to this blog.  Possibly I’ll be making a more realistic promise of making an entry at least once a month and occasionally bi-monthly depending on where I’m at with my thoughts and my art.

I apologize for the delay…but I’ve not ignored thoughts of this blog altogether.  I’ve been away at a friends cottage in a beautiful, sparcely inhabited part of Ontario where I was able to while away my time, when the sky was overcast and the rain was soaking the earth, to handwrite (didn’t want my computer with me) some notes and sketches.


During the sunny, clear days I kayaked, took photos and communed with nature and enjoyed my surroundings most thoroughly.  We Ontarians certainly have a lot to be thankful for…such glorious spaces we have if we look for them.  And the plans and animals, insects and birds that we have the privilege to enjoy are such a bonus.

  Now back to the purpose of this blog…to show some of my sculpture and paintings, etc. and give you an idea about my thought processes and reasons for doing the things I do.

Detail from a Double Bed sized quilt called The Flower Garden.
The design is original and each flower is multi-layered to give
the effect of real petals
I could go all the way back to when I first started creating serious art…my first hand appliquéd quilts, my paintings on wood, works in other mediums I've tried and the early stages of my stone carving…but I won’t go into the details.  What I will say is:  ‘I’ve done a lot of creative things over the years and I consider every thing I do to be ‘ a work in progress’.  Experimenting with mediums can be a fascinating journey.
Detail of Double Bed sized Fan Pattern Quilt
As an artist I believe in trial and error and going for the best you can do. 

While I’ve taken the odd course or workshop over the years I am a ‘self-taught” artist.  I’m this way for two reasons.

1)   I’m not a good student since I’m not crazy about being in a room with more than two or three people because I often feel intimidated and can’t work; and

2)   I prefer to tackle a medium in my own way and ‘bend it’ to make it work for me; then produce work that hasn’t been influenced by an instructors technique or subject matter or by trying to emulate what other students are doing or have done.

Obviously everyone needs help at some point, especially if you don’t understand a certain method of working with a medium or you get the dreaded ‘artist’s block’.  Then a workshop or a few hours with an artist that works in the same medium is hugely recommended.  It’s one of the best ways I know of getting ‘unstuck’,

American Goldfinch painted in acrylic on pine board

Another thing to do is gather two or three art friends, chose who’s house to meet in; then get together and ‘do art’ once a week.  I do and the three women I paint with have helped me get ‘unstuck’ a number of times and saved me from ‘shelving’ my paintings.  The four of us have had several shows together and those shows have motivated us to continue our art.  We don’t all use the same medium nor do we use the same subject matter so it’s fun for us to work together.  Also, we critique each others work honestly so we’re always working harder and keeping our work fresh.

We usually take a hiatus from the end of June until sometime in October so the four of us can do whatever we like to do during the course of the summer and fall.  I always look forward to the day that we are together again, surrounded by paint brushes, canvases, paper, etc. The first few weeks back we spend a lot of time catching up, showing photos of places we’ve been or people that have been part of our summer and generally getting inspired to set the mood for the winter months of painting and possibly planning a show.


I've shown here a sprinkling of some of the fun things I've done prior to carving in stone.  Some of the sculpture you'll see in the next few blogs dates back as far as the late 90’s when I first started to work with stone.  Painting in oil came later…around 2000.  Silver work is brand new…just started this year and I’m lovin’ it so plan on doing more workshops this winter.



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