Friday, September 29, 2006

Vanessa and Marcus' wedding tomorrow in Vancouver—I can't wait!!!

Friday, September 22, 2006

Its great to see the reactions...

Thursday, September 21, 2006

I had a fantastic time drawing caricatures yesterday at MacEwan's Welcome Back Beer Gardens (southside campus) Have a good year you guys—don't party too much:)

Just finished!!—Retirement gift picture
(Good luck in your next career Phil!)

Monday, September 18, 2006

You know I've been thinking lately...about time. Time travel in particular. A huge concept I know, and definitely one that requires a lot of consideration. Our book club met tonight at my house and discussed The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger. Unfortunately I didn't have time to actually finish reading the book but it has left a real question in my mind. Is time travel possible? I'm not sure. In the particular way that it was illustrated in this book— I think not, but perhaps by some other definition. I know that I can feel transplanted in time simply by seeing someone or something I haven't seen in years or just by a certain smell or sound. Is it just jogging my memory or am I really time traveling back to "that" moment in some other place?

When we refuse to accept and live in the present moment, is that time travel? If so, I've been a time traveler my entire life. I've always loved living in "tomorrow", "later", and "some day". They hold so much more creative and fearless potential than "today", "here" and "now". As much as I've been an advocate for the "live in the moment" movement, I'm actually quite a "one day when I get there" kind of person. I love to live in the future! Sometimes its not even my future. I feel so much at home there! I can make everything bright colours and beautiful. I can be in control and fully present there!

However, I'm married to a natural "live in the moment" person whom I deeply love and admire. His innate ability to see his world as it is right now and to accept it that way (whether he actually likes it or not) is truly inspiring, sometimes annoying, often frustrating but always extremely refreshing. I would love to live in the time that he lives. I remember a day before we were married, when he was so much in the present moment that he only thought of taking bus fare for the ride to work, not for the ride home. How could anyone be more "present moment" than that?

Lately I feel as though my life is passing too fast without my conscious acceptance and awareness of "now". I'm so tired of thinking ahead or remembering back all the time, instead of just being right here, right now. I don't want any more time to pass without feeling that I was present in this time of my life. Its hard work, but I'm slowly experiencing the transformation of "there" into "here" and "some day" into "now". I even get these occasional and remarkable glimpses of living totally in the present moment. Its really new for me. I love it, but I'm who's going to remember to bring the bus fare for the ride home?

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Another fun and busy drawing weekend!

Saturday morning and afternoon I took part in the National Esso United Way Day Campaign as one of many caricature artists across the country, set up at Esso stations, drawing customers, volunteers and employees. Here in Edmonton it was FREEZING cold and rainy but at least it didn't snow like it did in Calgary!

In the evening it was off to the Shaw Conference Centre with Lara for our inaugural Butt Doodling Gig! The event was for Canadian Tire and what an event! I've done a lot of drawing at this particular venue but I must say that the transformation of Hall D into a Las Vegas Casino was absolutely stunning! Chandeliers, poker tables, huge fake recreations of world landmarks, palm trees...Truly AMAZING!

Although we found that people were a little shy at first to show us their backsides, Elvis quickly stepped in to break the ice and get the Butt line rolling. Thanks to all our courageous victims, especially those who weren't even aware that we were drawing them until we tapped them on the shoulder and gave them the sketch! All in all, a FANTASTIC night!

...And don't worry, what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas...

Friday, September 15, 2006

Commissioned Illustration for a retirement gift.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Come out and participate in a National Caricature Event on
Saturday, September 16 from 10 a.m.-3 p.m.

We will be drawing caricatures for FREE:

1201 1st St SE, Calgary, Alberta
6510 Country Hills Blvd NW, Calgary, Alberta
15606 - 111 Ave, Edmonton, Alberta (THIS IS WHERE I WILL BE!)
3445 Hurontario St., Mississauga, Ontario
1150 Markham Road, Markham, Ontario
1485 Elgin Mills Rd, Richmond Hill, Ontario
6 3580 Strandherd Dr, Ottawa, Ontario
19712 Fraser Hwy, Langley, British Culombia
6270 Louis-Hypolythe Lafontaine, Montreal, Quebec
3340 des Sources/Brunswick, Dollard des Ormaux, Quebec
6022 Young Street, Halifax, Nova Scotia
Ottawa City Hall /110 Laurier Avenue West Ottawa, Ontario (8 a.m. to 12 p.m.)

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

You know I've been thinking lately....about space. Not outer space or the demotion of Pluto to dwarf planet, but "personal" space. You know, that space that exists in-between our bodies and the invisible (but very real) line we draw around ourselves, defining our boundaries. As I take note of where my line is, I suddenly realize that it changes constantly—in different environments, with different people, in different situations, and especially how it is affected by different senses. I realize that its location has a lot to do with my comfort level and that when that line gets crossed I experience a real feeling of discomfort.

The strangest part about this line is that not only do we rarely know exactly where ours is (until its crossed); other people have absolutely no idea where someone else's boundary might be. There's no buzzer sound like when you go over that line in bowling. Everyone usually just assumes the other person's line is in a relatively similar place to his or hers. I think most people are wrong...most of the time.

Lately, loud noise has been crossing into my personal space far more than I like; late night partying neighbor noise, loud talking basement renter noise, next door barking dog noise, occasional traffic noise, and it makes me (surprisingly) angry. OK, so I've never liked loud noise. But it’s never made me so angry before. I have already learned to accept noise on many levels and in many situations in my life and so I am caught a little off guard by my sudden intense discomfort.

Since I have three kids, I have already been forced to accept a LOT of "child" noise. When my oldest son was 4 years old, he would talk non-stop from the moment he woke up till the moment he went to sleep. It was exhausting. One day when we were baking cookies, out of frustration I said "Can't you please just be quiet for 5 minutes?" Without hesitation, he turned to me, looked me straight in the eye and said "No Mom I can't, because I'm just not a quiet kind of boy!" So, reluctantly, I have learned to adjust my personal child noise acceptance level...most of the time.

The festivals and events I draw at are almost always very loud, much louder than my comfort level. I have learned through the years to deal with it by using a meditation technique. By continually focusing on my drawing, I create a space or buuble around me where the noise can't penetrate. It works pretty well...most of the time.

But now, here I am faced with noise that I can't seem to come to terms with. I have never felt so personally battered by its constant intrusion. Maybe spending three nights on top of a mountain in a camping cabin with no electricity (and very little noise) a week ago, has made me more keenly aware of the amount of excess, outside loud noise that exists in my life here. Am I just getting old and inflexible or is this just a stage I'm going through—temporarily threatened by the possibility of losing even more sleep ( when I get so little as it is)? Is there a way I can accept these noise intrusions or do I need to aggressively defend my space? I don't know...

I know that I accepted a new level of noise with my son the moment I realized that he wasn't doing it to frustrate me—he was just living his life as himself in the only way that he knew. But, it also required my energy to explain to him about controlling his own "noise" and teach him about where my boundary line was. He is now nine and is still a very talkative kind of boy. He's very smart and loves to share his knowledge with me. He has finally learned to recognize that certain moments are not ideal moments to educate me on Greek history and to wait quietly... most of the time.

So maybe I just need to understand that the culprits of all these noise intrusions in my life lately are just simply living their life unaware of how their noise carries across my boundary line. Perhaps, I need to let each of them know where my line exists. Maybe I should calmly talk to each of them and explain that at certain times I would really appreciate less noise coming over into my space, and hopefully they will understand and try to fulfill my least most of the time.

I really just wish I could get a bowling line buzzer.

Monday, September 11, 2006

What a fabulous "summer" weekend! Beautiful weather for drawing at the Cornfest (at the Marketplace in Collingwood). Huge lineups and lots of money raised for the Burn Unit! (Last year it was FREEZING COLD and was the reason that I now carry gloves in my drawing case!)

Then on Sunday, I drew at Crystal's 13th Birthday party — a great bunch of cheerful and VERY talkative grade 8 girls (and one little brother). Happy birthday again Crystal! Enjoy being a teenager and have a wonderful year!

Monday, September 04, 2006

The busiest post—Edmonton Fringe week ever! There has been no time to clean the house or buy those grade 4 school supplies, what with drawing gigs every lunch hour at the Shepherd's Care facilities around town (staff pictures to celebrate their 35th Anniversary), and then one evening gig at the Sawmill restaurant for (some special staff members of) WJS Alberta.

Then off to Kelowna, B.C. for a small holiday and to draw at a wedding on Saturday, Sept.2. Great weather, amazing starlit skies from the top of the mountain at Beaver Lake and fun times! Congrats to Corinne and Robert—have a wonderful time on your honeymoon in San Francisco!

Hey BTW, thanks to whoever upgraded our Banff Hostel Room for us—loft, skylight—very nice! (If you are ever at the hostel, check out the waterslides across the road—what a blast!)

Also, if anyone finds my keys somewhere between here and Kelowna...let me know.

Well, the school supplies are bought, now to clean the house...tomorrow.