Tag: painting

Busy at the Carleton Place Farmer’s Market!

This summer, I have been busy working with the Radical Homemakers and Piercing Moon Creations, at the Carleton Place Farmer’s Market. It has been fun meeting other creative and artistic people.

I was given a few pieces of wood from SpaltedBob, which I have painted on. They were very different from my usual pre-treated canvases. The duck turned out wonderfully colourful.



While my hatchling has been needing more work. I did treat the wood with 2 layers of gesso before I started painting with oil. The wood is still taking the oil from the paint making it flatter looking than I want.

Hatching Chelonian

I have also been creating many new dangles for cup covers, each are unique, no two covers are the same. I have even started making larger sizes, with many more dangles. Little pieces of art, what fun to make!!

I also have been busy finishing off some bigger pieces, which will soon make it over to the gallery.

New Unique Cup Covers


Art and Alzheimer’s

Art and Alzheimer’s

Grandma Painting 2018

Yesterday would have been my grandmother’s 83rd birthday, but sadly Vascular dementia combined with Alzheimer’s caused her final stroke this past August. We celebrated her love for life with her favorite dinner and game, remembering her final months.

The previous 5 months were spent with us, on the “farm” as she called it. We do have chickens and goats, she would “baa at”. We even planted seeds in March, which she eventually tended on the deck in her Garden. We had the one out on the lawn, and she would try and spray water at you. This also included the many PSW’s who trusted her with the shower hose!

Right from the beginning of her stay, the change due to the Alzheimer’s was fast. Every day we tried to keep her mind occupied with activities, walks, outings, planting. I found her drawn to the kid-sized 100 piece puzzles, I had saved. This was interesting since she was never interested in them before. She would try so hard to maneuver the pieces, and stay focused for a long time

One of our first activities was an acrylic painting, I set up paints, canvas, easel  and cushioned rocking chair with a view outside. Since it was still March with lots of snow, I had leaned our old wagon wheel to the side of the driveway earlier. At first she argued as to what she would paint, and I pointed to the wheel. Then I quickly penciled a stick wheel, and she sat right down. Over an hour passed before she grew tired, and never finished that painting but always looked at it. After that I could only encourage her to do some colouring, with crayons, on a Teddy Bear Doodle.

It was quite an experience to live with and see first hand the effects of these diseases that affect not just our minds, but eventually the inability to control your body. There were days with moments of clarity and she would ask why she couldn’t remember things any more. Those times were the hardest times as well, but, the best times for her to look at photos, and anything to jog her memories really.

Her tomatoes ripened just after her stroke, and the roses started blooming. We made lots of tomato dishes and brought the roses inside. They have since bloomed again, just in time for her birthday.

Grandma’s rose 2018

A New Mentor

After moving from the northern GTA area, to the rural Ottawa area, we had a lot of adjusting to do. We had fewer neighbours, a gravel road and so much nature. At night it gets so dark with so many stars, something you miss growing up in the city.

Finally the pull of the canvas compelled me to finish Gandalf. I nervously started on my own, unsure if I remembered everything that I had learned. It took me some time adding and tweaking colours, until I felt like if I added anymore I would ruin it.

I went on to try painting something else, and decided on a picture I was shown of a dwarf. I sketched it on, then struggled trying to figure out which colours to put on first. So during the drying of layers, I decided to start another painting, this time of a Lynx. On a role, I also started portraits of my kids. I ended up with so many paintings on the go, it was a bit crazy.

I finally finished the dwarf, just before a new store opened in our local town. They offered lessons and group sessions run by local artists. I perused the line up and looked at some of the work they had submitted. I decided that I needed to join something, a 1 night a week for 10 week session, with a portrait artist sounded great! Hopefully I would learn new techniques and help keep me motivated.

2008, Still Life Oil Painting

2008, Still Life Oil Painting

Jack Neilson’s approach was so different from Clint. His approach was to capture the image like a still life. So I put my other projects away and decided to try his approach. I decided to be a bit radical painting in Impasto style, using just a painting knife, even attempting abstract painting (definitely not my strong suit). Jack had us always mixing colours, and this is when I really memorized different colours. I started really understanding the colour wheel, with tints and tones.

The first project was a still life of wine bottles. After that we could pick a picture of our choice. So we had to do a quick sketch, then start blocking in the colours. Jack worked so quickly, basically going over his canvas fully at least 3 times, but then that should be it.

2008, Oil Painting from photo

2008, Oil Painting from photo

This was my biggest lesson that I keep trying to accomplish. Since my media of choice has always been oil, I tried driers added to the oil, even different media like acrylic and gouache. I did attempt watercolours, but found them a bit difficult to achieve what I wanted. I even tried “plein airs”, which I haven’t been able to complete outside yet. I just love the details and 3 times just doesn’t seem like enough go overs for me, well not yet but I keep trying!