Friday, December 31, 2010

Flying Turkeys

Just after I uploaded the last post, I went outside and the turkeys were back; ran for the camera hoping to get some shots of them in flight. Got a few of the take off [bottom photo] but a couple of hours later I was lucky, thanks to the wonder dog Zoe, to get them in full flight.
Beautiful feathers
Take off

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Christmas Visitors

These turkeys were eating all around the bird feeder yesterday. Zoe had already chased them around the pond which was a very funny sight as she leaped through the snow trying to reach them and they, needing a fair bit of runway to launch themselves into fight, ended up in the trees looking rather like basketballs. Good thing they hid last week or the ending of this story could be quite different. Love the pattern and colors of their feathers. I am always surprised by how much blue is in the feathers.
Wild turkeys

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

More Amaryllis

Can't seem to stop playing about with these photos of the amaryllis, cutting them up, using them whole, re-arranging, re-photographing, re-constructing and de-constructing. Here are a couple of results.
De-constructed Amaryllis

Re-constructed Amaryllis

Sunday, December 26, 2010


Every year, well most years, I get a white amaryllis for the table at Christmas. I love these flowers and today with the light coming through the leaves it is just yummy. It might be the tender green, with its promise of spring that moves me so, especially when the outside is a buried world with only faith to sustain one that it will be green and lush again. Another favorite thing about amaryllis is that it always reminds me of this song, Amaryllis by Caccini and sung by Cecila Bartoli. [ I LOVE Cecilia Bartoli, in my next life I'm coming back as a singer please.]
Christmas Amaryllis

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Wishing You All The Very Best

Wishing you all the very best however you celebrate the season. We will go the route of family, friends, food and drink, books and music, studio time and walks with Zoe. The trees are up and decorated, and I am about to make tattie scones, something we always have for breakfast on Christmas morning. Basically left over mashed potatoes and flour, mixed to the consistency of pastry, rolled out very thinly, cut into triangles and fried. I think you might have to be a Davidson or Scottish to enjoy these, but I love them.
Add caption

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Views Through The Old And New

JB and I and of course Zoe live in an old (1862) farmhouse that we bought 35 years ago. It's been a good house for us and we love it. The brick was made down the road and the glass for the windows was also made down the road and has lovely ripples and bubbles.  It had a summer kitchen attached to the back of the house, then a buggy barn attached to that and a cow barn attached to that. The summer kitchen became our kitchen and the barns became out studios. About 15 years ago we decided to rebuild our studios and they became a berm, with windows. The other morning when I got up there had been more snow and it was beautiful. I was struck again by the fact that the house is another layer of skin, the windows eyes to see out. The old windows have their mullion bars while the new are tall and thin and frame the tree trunks.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Cleaning the floor

This post is not spiritually up-lifting or incredibility creative, but man is it clean. One of my rituals for getting ready for Christmas is to remove the old wax from the kitchen floor and apply new wax. I told you this was not uplifting but does it ever look good. I may hate the job but I love the results.
My Clean Floor

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Snow Shadows

The light is absolutely beautiful this morning, soft, pale rose and gold with undertones of blues. The sun is rising so far south and I can hardly wait for next weeks solstice. That is the moment for me when I know we are on our way to back from the dark to the light. Meanwhile I will enjoy this light.
show shadows

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


I LOVE Christmas lights. I don't care what color they are, I just love them. The day light is over by 3.30 p.m. and I love seeing these twinkling lights outside.
Twinkling Lights

Sunday, December 12, 2010

The Heart Wood

After the big wind storm of last week and just before the big snow storm of this week, our friend Aurel had time to cut and haul away the 4 big trees we lost to the wind. The Manitoba Maple is considered a weed tree but the colors of the heart wood are glorious. See what you think!
Heart Wood

Friday, December 10, 2010

A Paler Shade of White

Love that song and love the deep quietness of this white world. Someone said we had 41 inches of snow, that swirled about the house and now lies deep on the ground. The world has become so still, now that the wind has died down, almost as if she is resting. Snow has piled up against the doors and windows and there has been a lot of shoveling to do. JB, my darling, shoveled a path from the studio to the parking area, making it easy for people to visit for the studio sale.
Snow against the windows

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Getting Ready

The 25 small works are finished, now it's time to clean up the studio. Painted the big wall, the first time in 15 years and will see if  the other big wall gets done, but first need to scape the wax off the floor, do some , actually a lot of reorganizing and clear the path to the studio door. After 24 plus inches of snow that could be the biggest job.....maybe I'll  trample it down with snowshoes, might be more fun. Meanwhile the freshly painted wall looks very fine and love the shadows the ladder makes
the ladder shadows

Monday, December 6, 2010

December 6, 1989, Montreal, Quebec

In Memory of

Geneviève Bergeron, Hélène Colgan, Nathalie Croteau, Barbara Daigneault, Anne-Marie Edward, Maud Haviernick, Barbara Marie Klueznick, Maryse Laganière, Maryse Leclair, Anne- Marie Lemay, Sonia Pelletier, Michèle Richard, Annie St-Arneault, Annie Turcotte

who died in what has come to be known as the Montreal Massacre on December 6, 1989.
14 stones set in the concrete of my studio floor

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Some Street Art of Florence

While wandering around the city I took these shots. We were both surprised by how similar graffiti is all over the world, where I had expected differences. One thing that really did stand out was the scratching into the surface of the stucco, and the fact that there was so little graffiti in the old town. I found these beautiful.
Street art / graffiti in Florence

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Garden Light Studio Sale

When I started this blog back in the late summer I had no idea where it was going or where it would take me. One of the wonderful and unexpected things that happened was starting to use a grid to organize images and the other piece of serendipity is that it's become something I look forward to. A way of preparing myself for the studio. It's like playing scales. Working with the grid gave me the idea of making 25 small format works, 10 in x 10 in, that would be shown in the grid form but that each work had to be able to stand on it's own. I invite you to come and see the result. The studio will be open the weekend of December 11 and 12, from 10 am - 5 pm. If you need directions just email me [click on the link and it will even address your email] and I will send you a map. Hope to see you!

Monday, November 29, 2010

The Streets of Florence

I can't let go of all the images in my head and behind my eyes of Florence. One of my greatest joys of that city is the walking, and we walked for hours and hours every day. Whether you were in a museum or a church or strolling along the streets and alleyways there was such beauty; a feast for the heart and eyes.
The streets of Florence

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Curtains to Florence

It's over, 10 days in wonderful and magical Florence. Internet was the only thing that was tricky, often not working so I decided to let the world disappear and immerse myself in the Renaissance. The frescoes are glorious especially the Lippi senior in Prato, just up the road from Florence, where the quality of light in the white had us spell bound. I have been dreaming of that light ever since and when I woke the other morning there it was, in the sense of the light in the curtains. What's missing is the glow of golden light that permeated the frescoes.
Curtains at the Beacci

Friday, November 19, 2010

Walking Florence

Sunny, beautiful, warm, Florence, ah......Walking to the river, over the bridges, our favorite terrace, sunrise, sunset, the hills and trees, Ponto Santa Trinita, Santa Croce,  ah........
some favorite places in Florence

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


We're here and about to go walking and re-orienting ourselves with this wonderful place. No plan, just walk and look, and eat. Nice to be on the ground again and almost knowing what day it is. Still seems amazing to be in Sutton one day and walking about Florence the next.
On the way to Forence

Sunday, November 14, 2010


The studio is looking beautiful, quiet with intensity; I can find things again. Have all but 5 of the new works glued to the panels and am painting the edges of the paper, on the getting close to finished panels.  Hopefully will start putting encaustic on this afternoon, always a time a great pleasure, the house and studio smell divine and it's thrilling to see the colors emerge from the paper.
Order in the studio

Friday, November 12, 2010

Priming Panels

The studio is a mess. I am in the midst of preparing panels for the Garden Light series so there are pots of primer, gray for the edges, prints hanging on the walls and all sorts of stuff hanging about waiting to be finished. Need to put some order into it, but will start here with the panels I am prepping, and put them into the grid.
Prepping panels in the studio

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Finally, Frost on the Pond

Went outside early to walk around the garden and found the first ice on the pond. One of my favorite sights. Feathers encased in ice for a brief time; it will melt by late morning, freezing again tonight, a bit harder this time, and melting again tomorrow, until at last the ice stays. A beautiful process to watch and remember.
First ice on the pond

Monday, November 8, 2010

Great News

A dear friend Michèle Plomer has just won a wonderful award for her latest book HQPQ. Way to go Michèle! The photo of Miche is by André Roy

Freezing Rain

Well it had to happen. November = freezing rain and very short days. As you can probably tell,  not my favorite month of the year. JB had to go out early this morning so while he scraped the car I took the pictures. Perhaps not the fairest exchange. Again, I am amazed by the pattern and colors of the ice, I can hardly wait for the pond to start freezing! Meanwhile here is the freezing rain.
Freezing Rain

Friday, November 5, 2010

Where Things Lead

Doing this blog every other day has been a good discipline for me and it is really fascinating seeing where it leads me. When I worked with the oak leaves last Thursday, I realized by Saturday [ it takes a bit of time], that the colors and light between the leaves were what was seducing me. I realized there was a body of work awaiting, based on these images, and so have decided to have a studio show of these small works. Each piece will be 10 in. x 10 in. on panel with encaustic. Can't wait to see what other arrangements emerge.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Blue Sky

Finally, after what seems like days and days of gray, the sky is blue and both JB and I are in much better moods! Might also have something to do with the fact that my internet is working again.
Blue Skies

Monday, November 1, 2010

Snow on the Stone Walls

A dusting of snow these last 2 days so that the bones of the garden show even more. The tree trunks and branches etched against the gray skies, while the bits of color left in the garden glow. The pattern of the stone walls comes into prominence again. I love these stone walls and I keep building more every year. At this rate the land will be nothing more that stacks of stone, but there is something immensely pleasurable about building them. Time stops or is suspended and all there is is the placing of stone on stone.
Snow on the stone walls

Saturday, October 30, 2010

The Light in Between

While I was working on the last post, "Oak Leaves", I was intrigued by the colors and shapes between the leaves. In order for the close up of the leaves to be in focus the background was out of focus, and the colors were unexpected and glorious. I was up early and started to play with the colors, layering them on top of each other, like collage. This is what happened. I think each one will become a small work 10 in. x 10 in.
Garden Memory

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Oak Leaves

The garden is almost put to bed, I have to dig up some pale yellow iris I promised some friends and plant a few daffodils I found in a pail beside the compost, actually quite a few daffs. It's looking good though, spare, the bone show, and most of the color is muted. I am waiting for the young oaks at the back to drop their leaves before I do the final "sweep".
Oak leaves

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Leaves in the Pond

Getting the final parts of the garden put to bed and I need to rake the edges of the pond to get out all the debris i.e. leaves and pine needles so that we do not add any more sediment to the bottom. For some reason the color of the water seems darker at this time of year and I love how the leaves appear under several inches of water.
Pond leaves and pine needles

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Rain Drops

Took these photos the other day, the patterns made by the droplets are gorgeous. I would love to be able to capture the moment the drop hits the water, more experimenting with JB's camera needed.
raindrops on pond

Friday, October 22, 2010

Back to the Pond

We have had strong winds and driving rain for the last couple of days. Taking a break yesterday and walking around the pond I noticed how the pine needles had been swept to one side of the pond and arranged in the most beautiful patterns. It looked like they were really trying to be obedient and all face the same direction but their natural exuberance made for more chaotic patterns.
Pine needle patterns

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

I love Type

It's true, I love type. I love the shape of the letters, I love the space around them, the only problem with this relationship is I can't spell, but who cares every relationship has its bumps. Over the years I have made "artists books" and have plans for more. "Homage for Betty" (need a new title so any suggestions are welcome) is at the mock-up stage, while "Why I Paint" is still only at the computer stage. With this book I am hoping to learn letterpress so am eagerly scouting out people, studios and workshops to take some courses. Meanwhile I have been playing with type again, this time using the whole alphabet except for Z, there was no more room. The typeface is Americana and all the letters are lowercase.
a, b, c, .....well you get the picture

Monday, October 18, 2010

Hallucinating on the letter "a"

Spent the week-end in a fog of flu and hallucinating or dreaming or whatever on the lower case letter "a". I kept seeing the rounded top of the letter and then other bits and pieces. Alway in black type but often in different typefaces. In between bouts of sleep I made this, well actually about 4 of these but I think we can stop at one.
"a" is for ......

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Playing With Letters

Spent most of the day designing a logo for a friends company and while looking through the old files found this type that I drew years ago. The logo will incorporate children's drawings and needs a "hands on" feel so I had a great time playing. P.S. It's snowing!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Sunrise Drama

There was 10 minutes of fabulous,  heavenly drama this morning as the sun rose. Think it must have been in celebration of the Chilean miners' rescue which has had me glued to the TV, internet or twitter for the past 2 days. How wonderful and inspiring their story is.
The heavens are telling

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

First Frost

It was cold last night as we walked Zoe and the stars were amazing. Forgot my Ipod with Star Walk so still only know the names of about 4 stars but I'm learning. This morning when I got up there was hard frost on the ground; soft, golden light and leaves falling. I love the way the frost outlines each leaf. I become so much more aware of their pattern and texture, and I love the way the silvery, glinting frost changes the color.
First Frost

Monday, October 11, 2010


Happy Thanksgiving everyone. I was thinking about all the things I am grateful for, doing my own thanksgiving you could in no particular order, well except for JB making the top of the list, here are some of the things I am giving thanks for, JB, Zoe, my studio, family, friends, art, music, books, stones, water, beer and cigs, galleries, museums, Florence, my garden, FB friends and community, trees, my Mac, words, my strong and healthy body, love, my piece of heaven.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Shimmering Pond

I am loving using this grid idea. It's seductive and addictive and playful. So here are photos of the pond. It's almost my favorite time for the pond, the only thing is it's to cold to swim.
Shimmering pond

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Another Grid

I came down stairs the other morning to find the living room windows fogged over. We need to get the storm windows on, hopefully this week end. Meanwhile I love the patterns  and the texture the condensation has created.
My foggy windows

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

The Color Square

I thought I was making a color wheel but it had a mind of its own and wanted to be a color square. Realized that turquoise was going to be a problem until I looked beside me and there is a beautiful stone with just the color I need. Thank you!

Sunday, October 3, 2010


First frost last night and really late this year, but the best thing is the sun is out! Continuing the color wheel it's red today and not a maple leaf in sight. The storms of the past week have really opened the views through the woods so that the vertical gray of the tree trunks are becoming predominant. The bones are beginning to show in the garden.
Rose Hips...the deer were munching these early this morning
Berberis, one of my favorite the hearts
Euoymus, or Burning Bush...fabulous bark and stems and amazing fall color

Friday, October 1, 2010


Pouring rain the last 2 days, dark and heavy with a chance of flooding....U%$#$. Good thing I shot these Wednesday in a brief period of light. I want to see if I can go through the whole color wheel using the fall colors. There is a problem with the blues, I will have to use the sky and the mountains, neither of which are visible at the moment! So here is orange.
Sumac leaves...gorgous

More sumac leaves

Peony leaves