Monday, March 30, 2009

Dear Tria markers,
I know this might be completely out of the blue... but...I'm breaking up with you. Yes, we have been together for 24 years and have drawn over 40,000 faces together.... but I have met someone else...someone who fulfills my needs the way you no longer do, since your most recent transformation.

In my defense, I really stood by you in the early 90's (during your first transition) know, back when all your alcohol was removed (thankfully it was not the alcohol from my life). You weren't as intense but it was also so freeing...all of a sudden I could colour on photocopies.

We had so many great years after that! Sure there were leaks in your poorly designed, refillable cartridges but I was willing to over look that because there were just so many advantages to having you in my life. You were reliable, comfortable and most importantly...refillable.

But then you changed. Suddenly Pantone colours were no longer "good enough" and you changed your whole look. You even had the gall to switch your greys around so that warm grey 1 was now warm gray 9! You also decided to make only certain colours refillable, but coincidently not the ones I need and that was just not OK with me. You really pissed me off!

Yes, you look "snazzier" with your new brush tip and clear body, but you so easily dry out and can barely make it through one of my 4 hour gigs.

I have became nervous having you with me.

Well... as of tonight, its over...and yes...I have been unfaithful. Since you changed, I have been trying out a few others on the side and finally, someone has won my heart. His name is Copic and tonight I moved him into your slots of my felt pen case.

Yes, the rumors are true, he is coming to Artfest with me—not you. Oh and guess what? ...he's "refillable".

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Artfest countdown...
Well, I haven't had a spare moment to figure out exactly what goes on with the trades (let alone make anything to trade) and was planning on just being an observer this first time around. Then today I read Jackie Wood's blog and she mentioned that there were no rules to the trades and so I thought "Hey, then why don't I trade caricatures?".

So I made up this background souvenir sheet (and for an example put a drawing of a girl Carly that I drew yesterday) and am offering to draw any one's caricature for a trade. Obviously I won't be able to trade as quickly as the trading seems to happen but if at sometime during the 3.5 days of Artfest you would like your cartoon portrait drawn, then trade something with me...(they take about 5 minutes to draw).

Friday, March 27, 2009

If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.
~ Henry David Thoreau

I first read this quote about 20 years ago and have written it in my journals a number of times since. When I stumbled upon it tonight I realized that, with all the exciting things going on in my life right now, the idea behind that quote is exactly what I am experiencing ..."advancing confidently in the direction of my own dreams".

This has been a very full week of "endeavoring to live the life that I have imagined"...and part of that wonderful life is drawing here are some more...

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Dear Ry,
Up until 12 years ago today...
I thought having children would not change me or my life that much...and then you arrived. You were born on March 26, 1997— a warm spring morning, at our home in Toronto, Ontario, on Howland Ave.

You are an amazing, intense, brilliant, contradictory, talented, demanding, passionate, highly sensitive (but with such a hard shell of indifference sometimes its difficult to see) person.

In the relatively short time that you have been in my life, you have challenged:

my view of the world,
my opinions, beliefs and perceptions about parenting,
and my boundaries, my perspectives, and my limitations in my life MORE than anyone else I have ever met.

Now, as I watch you physically mature into the old soul that you have always been, I think I finally understand. All this time you have been walking beside me, leading me to the threshold of my own maturity.

Thank you for coming into my life and guiding the way.

I love you deeply.
Happy 12th birthday Ryllan.

Love mom

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

These are the altered book journals that my son Kieran's grade one class made...

The covers are made from old children board book panels; sanded and gessoed and then decorated with paint layering , collage and stamping techniques.
Aren't they just beautiful?
The kids really did an amazing job.
I was so thrilled looking at each one last night as I cut card stock, punched holes and then simply bound them with twine.
Every book is so different from the next,
just like the kids themselves...
In April, I will be going back into their class to teach some creative journaling and drawing to them in their new journals...

Meanwhile so many thoughts distracting me while I try to get ready and finish up my last bits of work before I leave for Artfest next week.
And just when I thought I had a handle on
all the other exciting big steps going on around me...
Journalfest registration opened today!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Doesn't every 5 year old girl want to be a mermaid?my process to get her there...

I haven't done a lot of mixed media portraits since the NCN convention in North Carolina last November and so I really enjoyed painting this one for a friend. The tail is filled with special collage elements, chosen for this particular mermaid.

I just love it when my two art worlds (drawing faces and mixed media) collide. I am looking forward to a place in time when they have the opportunity to collide more often.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

For me...
the start of Spring was filled with
ear aches...
and icicles...

I finally finished the caricature commission (above) today. yeah! Its been a rough couple of weeks. Almost all of my time has been consumed by taking care of sick kids with on and off fevers, sore throats and ear aches. Its just so rough to get anything done when my kids are sick. Ryllan finally managed to go back to school yesterday and not come home with a fever. Poor little Pip had a really horrible day with her "first ever" ear ache.
I'm crossing my fingers now that Ryllan is fully recovered (although still coughing) and that Piper is hopefully on the road to recovery very soon. Kieran really lucked out this time and didn't catch anything.

The snow is finally STARTING to melt...and I am REALLY hoping that our Spring will actually come SOON! Let's hope they were just kidding about it snowing 5 cm tomorrow.)

Now I'm heading off to draw caricatures at the
Dovercourt Community Hall for "Pub Night".
If you are invited...I'll see you there!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Here is a commission for a birthday gift I just finished tonight...

and a soccer team I drew on Sunday night...

..Just think only 27 more faces to draw from photos...
26 grade one journals to bind together,
5 live caricature gigs,
4 altered book/ journaling classes to teach,
1 altered book/ journaling workshop to prep for and
1 playschool fieldtrip to attend
I go to Artfest...
we're in the Homestretch NOW!

Monday, March 16, 2009


O`ver*whelmed"\, v. t. [p. pr. & vb. n. Overwhelming.]1. To cover over completely, as by a great wave; to overflow and bury beneath; to ingulf; hence, figuratively, to immerse and bear down; to overpower; to crush; to bury; to oppress, etc., overpoweringly.

...this is how I'm feeling by everything today...need I say more?

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Signs its (not yet) Spring

I took those photos a couple days ago,
when it was starting to warm up,
(so that was at least somewhat hopeful)...

...but then this morning,
we wake up to this...
I really want our winter to be over

Friday, March 13, 2009

The road outside of our house has deep ruts in the snow caused by vehicle tires always driving along the same path. As you drive in the ruts, its familiar and comfortable at first, kind of like you are on the track of an amusement ride— you don't really need to pay attention because the tires are directed by the track.

After awhile though its uncomfortable because you feel stuck and can't get off. In fact, when you do try to get out of them, your tires struggle against the walls of the ruts. When they finally do jump out, your vehicle slides uncontrollably sideways on the icy ridges, till you take control of where you are going again.

Its amazing how the ruts in our lives happen in such a similar way.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

I like trees because they seem more resigned to
the way they have to live
than other things do.

~Willa Cather

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

What do YOU do when its -32 ?

(Actually with the windchill it was -48 (so I guess I should tell you what I ate :)

Today, I played in the studio all day. It felt so good. One boy was sick, one girl didn't have playschool today and one boy stayed home from school...just because it was so cold. They watched TV for awhile and then we made a huge mess with paint, brushes and sponges, paper and journals and some very small Lord of the Rings figures... and then many hours later we cleaned it all up and ate leftover spaghetti.

Its been so long since I have had the time to just play with paint without it being a commission or in preparation for teaching. It was so wonderful. It fills me up in away that nothing else can and yet I easily neglect to make time for it.

I NEED to make more time for "that" in my life.

There are only two kinds of freedom in the world; the freedom of the rich and powerful, and the freedom of the artist and the monk who renounces possessions.

~Anais Nin

...and well of course due to my recent Missy Higgins obsession...we also spent a lot of time listening to her.

What I have been drawing lately...
...a souvenir of a Thailand trip...

A drawing for a "save the date" magnet...

A "pirate party" for a five year old...and a very busy weekend drawing 3 soccer teams...

Monday, March 02, 2009

I have 2 new classes beginning at the Paint Spot this week!
here's one of the books we will be making...

and on the inside...
Come on out and play with us.