Monday, October 5, 2020

What Emerges--my solo show at the Gage Gallery

Members of the Gage Artist's Collective are scheduled in rotation for a three-week solo show. and finally this week my exhibit opened. It took longer than expected because of Covid. Originally my show was to be in May but it was postponed while the gallery was closed. We reopened in June and now it's my turn.

I decided to call the show What Emerges because the paintings aren't preplanned at all. I start with a feeling and a few colours and begin to paint, not knowing where the painting will end up. Here's what emerged over the past year from the time I was recovering from my knee replacement in September to now. 

   The outside view of the gallery.

Some of the walls showing the paintings hung.

And here are a few close-ups of the paintings. They vary in size from 6"x6" to 36"x36" and it was a challenge to hang them so they related to each other. For this show I scaled up my paintings from the smaller sized (12x12 to 24x24) to 24x36 and even 36x36 inches. That's the largest size painting I am able to produce on my easel and painting table in the bay window of our living room.

Summer Morning (36x36)


Emergence  (24x36)

This was the first painting I did after my knee surgery.

Together and Apart  (24x24) 

Incoming Tide (36x36)

Blue Rondo (36x18)

Upward Flow (24x30)  SOLD

I found painting these canvasses during the first months of Covid was a very calming and energizing experience. I'm so glad that I had this time to focus on my art and come up with a result that pleases me.

Here's a final look through the window. Paintings of all sizes and priced from $250 to $600. There are other paintings in the show as well. And it's up until October 18th at the Gage Gallery, 2031 Oak Bay Avenue. They're open Tuesday through Saturday 11-5 and Sundays 12-4 if you want to drop by.

Wednesday, September 9, 2020

Evening wanderings

 It's been beautifully warm the past few days, and that's rare for Victoria.  We've enjoyed heading out for walks in the neighbourhood after dinner.  Here are a few photos of what we've seen.

A view of one of the plots in the community gardens.

A heritage house lit by the setting sun.

Garden outside another old house, tended by a retired man who works incessantly on it.

Flowers in the light of the setting sun.

Victoria High School, built in 2013.  Our son's alma mater.

Looking west to Victoria's downtown as the sun sets.

An old fir tree in the front yard of a house on Caledonia Street.

Another heritage house with garden.

Heading up Yukon Street. Our house in on the left.

The red house.

The yellow house.

The green house (ours).

The back patio as the lights come on.

Thursday, August 20, 2020

The misty west coast of Vancouver Island

We've spent the last few days in a cabin on South Chesterman Beach near Tofino. This has been in the planning stages for about a month since we were offered a home exchange for six days. 

It was a great opportunity to take a little trip without leaving our Island home and to spend some time with our friends Paul and Wendy from Comox.

Like all trips, it's had its ups and downs.  We arrived after a long, hot and winding six-hour drive to gorgeous sunny weather and lovely accommodation right across the road from the beach access.

The next morning I took a low-tide sunrise beach walk. South Chesterman is really beautiful. This is a place where lots of people come to learn to surf. 

Our friends Paul and Wendy arrived the following day. We had time on Sunday to explore Tofino and get dinner ready for them.  Here they are with Harry on the beach that evening.

This was the Sunset Sunday night. Gorgeous!

The next day we explored Tofino and planned our week. Paul took a bike ride on the cycle path north to Tofino and we had coffee on a patio overlooking the Tofino Harbour. Things are somewhat different with Covid as the communities are being very strict with numbers, masks and protocols. Lots of restaurants and businesses are closed but there are still lots of visitors. This means lineups to get into coffee shops and stores.  Here's the Tofino harbour with its mountain backdrop.

And here's the view from the coffee shop (panorama).  You can see that the weather was changing.

Back to Chesterman we took advantage of the falling tide to walk around the headland to a hidden beach that's accessible only at low tide. It has sea caves and clefts in the rock that you can walk through.

On our way back Paul went swimming. He's able to do this only because he has a wetsuit. The water if freezing cold.  

Tomorrow I'll fill you in on our rainforest explorations and walks.

Saturday, June 6, 2020

June Covid19 update from Yukon Street

So many things have had to be cancelled this past month. First was our July trip to Central Europe planned around four different home exchanges. We kept waiting and hoping that things would open up but when KLM cancelled our June 30th flight we saw the writing on the wall. It looks like we will end up with a voucher that we can use to book something next year. Fingers crossed that some travel will happen by then.

The other cancellation was our planned trip on the Esperanza up the outside coast of Vancouver Island.  This was something that we also hoped might happen but since the itinerary brings us to some remote First Nations villages it couldn't happen. These small communities are taking great caution to prevent transmission of the virus and they remain closed to any visitors. We're on the waiting list to do this trip next summer. Hopefully the company will still be in business.

The third thing is that my solo art show at the Gage, scheduled for the last week in May and the first two weeks in June, was postponed. I've got a dozen paintings ready for it and if all goes well the show will open the last week of September.  But for now I've dismantled the painting alcove in our living room. and restored it to just a desk in front of the bay window.  I've been using it to do some work in a sketchbook on a daily basis. This is something I've thought of doing before but never followed through. I've done a minimum of two pages every day since May 17th.

Here are a couple of pages. They're just for fun and exploring with no pressure to produce anything.

The good news this weekend is that Vancouver Island was yesterday declared Covid-free. The last patient has been discharged from the hospital and there have been no new cases for a couple of weeks. We're all cautiously rejoicing but everyone is aware that relaxation of these rules brings the possibility of another surge.

Meanwhile we're working in the garden, transplanting and moving things around a bit and I've planted some vegetables in pots on the sunny side that are doing well. Gradually we're beginning to invite friends over and it's so wonderful to be able to visit in person after all these weeks alone.  We are looking forward to some summery weather so we can enjoy June, July, and August--the best months here on Canada's west coast.

We hope that you are well and in good spirits wherever you happen to be at this moment.

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Al fresco visits

So here we are in May and our province is still doing social distancing but we've had some success in flattening the curve of Covid-19. This coming weekend some things will return to semi-normal. British Columbia has laid out a series of steps to start slowly reopening some services here.

The goal is to keep cases low while gradually opening up a few businesses and activities. As of this weekend we will be able to "double our bubble"--in other words we can include a couple more family members or close friends in our lives. What a difference this will make.

Harry's son Ben and his fiancee and my sister will welcome being included in our bubble. We miss them so much.

The weather last weekend was stellar and I was able to meet with some friends at Beacon Hill Park in the warmth of a sunny Sunday afternoon.  We took our lawn chairs and sat six feet apart and chatted for the first time since early March. What a treat. And how it underscored the realization that our social connections are what makes life worth living.

Over the next few weeks we're hoping that things will open up a bit more. We have a lovely back yard with lots of fresh air and a beautiful fountain--and room for social distancing. We just picked up a case of wine and would welcome you to come for a socially distanced visit. It's been a long time.

Some colour for you.