Friday, September 26, 2014

More Dominos

I wondered if I could combine the stroke of my beautiful brush [link here] with Tamar's work [link here] and soon realized there was a problem with the texture of the paper. Tamar had used cold press and for some reason [my concentration being that of a nit right now] these trials were all on hot press, which gave a very clean stoke but sharper colour.  So I went back to the cold press to see what would happen; the broad stroke broke up on the textured paper but the oil pastel lines I liked, so I gessoed and sanded 1/2 the paper, and repeated the whole thing to see which I preferred. The jury is still out.

1st half  NO gesso, 2nd half gesso, 2014

Tamar Zinn, my half is on Hot press, 2014

Tamar Zinn and another variation, my half is on Hot press, 2014

Tuesday, September 23, 2014


My mother in law died 10 days ago, just 3 days short of her 102nd birthday, in her own bed and in her own home. This isn't meant to be an eulogy for Mrs. B, although she was a remarkable woman and if you would like to read about one of her finest achievements [other than my darling] here is a link; rather I'm trying to understand this time of waiting and grieving, of having time come to a standstill and ever so abruptly lurch forward. The landscape is foggy, the mist rises and clears for a while and then descends again, and it's more of a water world that we float on, learning to ride the waves. The studio calls and what happens there is unpredictable, I think I have a clear idea of where I am going but the pencil in my hand has another. There are a lot of starts but few finishes; my attention span is that of a nit.

ink on paper, 16 x 11 in approx, 2014

ink and oil pastel, 8 x 8 in, 2014

Monday, September 8, 2014


A few weeks ago I received a small work in the mail from a friend Tamar Zinn [see her work here]. It's a work 6 x 6 in on a paper support 6 x 12 in and is the first half of a domino that I now get to work on. It's been exciting and intimidating; firstly because I admire Tamar's work which I find elegant and subtle, and secondly because 6 x 6 is seriously small and I need to work right up to the edge of her work.

1st half of Dominio, oil and oil pastel on paper ©Tamar Zinn, 2014

I pulled out a couple of sheets of 300 lb Arches and started to draw some ideas and work out some of the technical problems of how I will do the final drawing next to hers. Bleed was a big problem, so are the size of my hands, but the biggest problem was the truthfulness of my response. I want a relationship between the works but sometimes it felt like I had lost me [often a state I have longed for] and couldn't figure out the transitions between tiles. Below are some of the early ideas.

one of the early responses to Tamar's work

another one of the early responses to Tamar's work, better but what if I flipped the shape…..

better but still not there

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Waves of Light

I've spent the last month swimming in light and memory; but lovely, languid August is over and it's time to resurface. It's been a time of retreat; of refuge, a time to dream, to plan, to garden, and to marvel; a time of silence. And I know I want and need to come back to this world but I have a huge resistance to this as "my desire to be well informed is currently at odds with my desire to remain sane”. [J. found this quote and placed it on my desk, sorry that I don't know who to attribute it to.] So these photos are a prayer for the world, the blue ball we all live on and everything that inhabits it.

Waves of light, 2014

Light Breaking, 2014

Light Touching, 2014

Light Divided, 2014

Monday, August 4, 2014

Weaving Webs

Walking out side yesterday morning I noticed that the spiders had been busy drawing lines from the top of the column supporting the porch roof across the path to the day lilies and an equal sided triangle on the other side. These were huge webs easily 8 feet high and 10 feet wide and what so amazed me was that they weren't there the night before, and as I continued my morning stroll through the garden there were fairy's handkerchief dotted about the lawn. Still later sitting drinking our morning coffee watching the mist burn off, dew sliding of the apple tree and anointing us, we realized there were garlands of web lines through the branches like sparking like tiny Christmas lights.

Part of the huge web at the front porch, 2014

fairy's handkerchief, detail, 2014

fairy's handkerchief, detail, 2014

I will be taking a break for the next couple of weeks; some time out is needed, quiet time. And so on this 4th anniversary of writing this blog I want to thank you for coming along with me, reading and looking and leaving comments and to say Thank you so much, and see you in a few weeks.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

More Grids

It rained the other day so finding some free time out of the garden I wanted to try out some ideas I had re drawing. One was to use a pen on vellum, [I love vellum], but have to admit to a certain distaste of how they work together; next time it's pencil on vellum. I miss that tiny amount of resistance as the pencil moves across the surface. And I thought I was drawing squares but realized these are really right angles.

640 right angles, pen on vellum, 11.7 x 16.5 in, 2014

altered,  11.7 x 16.5 in, 2014

altered 2,  11.7 x 16.5 in, 2014

Saturday, July 26, 2014

The Grids

When I started my blog 4 years ago I searched for a way to organize my photos and started to use a grid; it's wonderful structure with endless possibilities and a structure I love exploring. So when I first conceived of how The Voice of the Line would be organized I knew that grids would be a large part. It's the last weekend for the exhibition at Galerie Art Plus, so if you haven't had a chance to drop by please do; 8 rue Maple, Sutton, and the hours are from 1 - 5pm.

The Black Notebook, 8.5 x 8.5 image, 13 x 13 framed, mixed media on black Cranston paper
Altered Drawings, 11 x 11in image, 20.5 x 20.5 in framed, digital on Somerset paper
The Fierceness of Winter, 14.5 x 14.4 in image, 20 x 20 in framed, mixed media on paper
The Voice of the Line, 15.5 x 11 in image, 20.5 x 16.75 framed, ink on Japanese paper

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Working My Way Back

I put a tentative foot back in the studio during yesterdays storm; mostly playing with some cardboard I had saved and watching the shadows play along the floor. It always takes a while to find my way back. I expected to start with some drawing to see how some new pens worked on the vellum but it was so dark, with thunder crashing about that a more frivolous approach seemed right. Shape and shadow seem to be the theme of the day.

smokestacks, cardboard, 
landing, shadows from cardboard

Monday, July 21, 2014

Meanwhile, Back in the Garden...

The Echinacea are starting to bloom; last week I watched them form their crowns, which really do look like crowns and kept telling myself to go and get the camera. But I kept drinking my coffee and watching the clouds roll by. And when I was finally in the garden with the camera I needed to find some that hadn’t open fully. They thrill me these plants, I love their structure, the way they open peeling back layers to reveal themselves, I love the gray / green of the leaves and the hairy bits around each petal. Then there is the amazing pattern of the cone, the golden section in all its perfection.

the centre, echinacea, 2014

tiny spiders web, echinacea,2014

the cone of spirals, echinacea, 2014

forming the crown, echinacea, 2014

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Good news

The Voice of the Line has been extended at Galerie Art Plus until July 27th. I've been at the gallery all week during the Tour des Arts and it has been great fun listening and seeing peoples expressions as they enter the gallery for the first time; oh wow, oh wow, most exclaim. Brigite is thrilled; I am thrilled as we feel the space and the work speak so well with each other.  The organ is still in place and I have been having a blast trying to figure out how to play it, I definitely need new reading glasses and the separation of hands on to different level keyboards is fascinating, next I'll try the pedals So if you have the chance please come and visit, it would be a pleasure to meet you.

west wall at Galerie Art Plus, 2014

west wall at Galerie Art Plus, 2014

south and west wall at Galerie Art Plus, 2014
drawings on the scaffold, north wall at Galerie Art Plus, 2014

north and east wall at Galerie Art Plus, 2014

other side of the scaffold looking west, Galerie Art Plus, 2014

a grid on the east wall,Galerie Art Plus, 2014

east wall, Galerie Art Plus, 2014

south east corner, Galerie Art Plus, 2014

south wall, Galerie Art Plus, 2014