Thursday, January 30, 2014

IWS Juror

I am honoured to be selected to represent Canada as a juror in the International Watercolour Society Youth Contest along with Jean Pederson and the founder of IWS Atanur Dougan.

The contest is open to all watercolour artists worldwide from the ages of 16-35 and the jurying will take place next month.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014


I had to go back into hospital for a while because I contrated an infection during the procedure a week or so ago and it was getting worse. While there I couldn't resist painting this little Ted painting to take my mind off things.

I thought it would be fun to have it instead of a plain copyright symbol in the Ted book I am going to be creating later this year. What do you think?

All too often people use an artists work without their permission because they are just not aware that an image, even though it has been put on the web or in a magazine, still belongs to the artist. I have encountered this many times, especially with my Ted paintings so I thought I would create a Ted painting to help raise awareness. Ted says

' Please enjoy looking at the artwork. Share it with your friends if you would like but always ask first and give credit to the artist because we are Copyright-Ted'


Thursday, January 16, 2014

Paws for Thought

 I have been trying to get the pen and ink drawing of Harry my Labrador when he was a small pup finished over the last few days. It has been a good way to take my mind off not feeling well and my operation tomorrow. 

 I love Harry's dreamy expression. I wonder what he was thinking. I have just added a touch of watercolour in his eyes. I felt it gave him a much more far away feel.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Honouring the past, Shaping the Future

I am really happy to have finished this painting before next week when I have to go back into hospital for an operation. 

The title just seemed fitting for not only this painting but my life right now. Not only is this my first painting of the new year but I remember when I won my first ever international award in 2011 John Salminen telling me that he measured his progress and success in art in blocks of 5 years not individual awards. With the end of 2013 and the start of 2014, I have now just finished my first 5 years of painting in watercolour (It's been a great ride! ) Now I am just beginning my second block of 5 years. This painting therefore not only represents the blacksmith honouring tradition while forging a new creation but me honouring what I have learnt so far about watercolour and trying my best to put it into practice while looking ahead as I begin my next set of 5 years wondering where those years will take me not only in art but life. I wonder what I will be creating in the next 5 years? This is a good question to think about over the next few weeks when I know things are going to be tough.


Thursday, January 9, 2014

The Framing Depot Gold Award for Best in Show

I am very pleased to have won The Framing Depot Gold Award for Best in Show  in the BWS Impressions of the Heart Juried Exhibition for my painting 'Craft-Ted with Love'. 

The exhibition will take place at the Richmond Hill Centre for the Performing Arts from February 3rd to March 2nd 2014. Thank you to the Juror Karin Isenburg for selecting my painting as Best in Show and to Steve Morkotinis from The Framing Depot for kindly donating the award. Congratulations to the other artists who have also won awards. I hope that if you live around the Greater Toronto Area you can stop by and view the exhibition next month.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Happy New Year

I have had a great start to 2014. One of the miniature Ted paintings 'Mist-Ted' sold yesterday and will be on its way to his new family on Monday morning.

I have been working away at both the drawing and the painting over the last few days. Neither are finished yet but with the painting I am getting close. I am still really enjoying developing the feeling of light. Tight curly hair takes an AGE to paint though which is slowing me down at the moment.

For those of you that thought I would finish the drawing first I am sorry but developing the really dark areas in pen takes a long time. The nose was also quite challenging to create. One benefit to doing a watercolour and a pen at the same time is that it makes me seem quite quick at the watercolour.  Working in pen is just slow. I have lost count of the number of hours I have been working on this already. Its very relaxing though and fun to see a puppy emerge out of the white paper as you work.

Talking of Puppies. I thought you would all enjoy some New Years Resolutions from my faithful furry friends Ella and Harry. Do any of these remind you of things your pets do?

1. We will try our best to NEVER interrupt our artist’s creative flow ….UNLESS…..…she has become so absorbed in her work that she has forgotten to eat. Interrupting her is then our duty as her furry companions, isn’t it? After all a healthy creative spirit must be fed … and we are healthy and very creative if allowed to be… and if we don’t remind her to feed herself then we don’t get fed either.

2. We have noticed that our artist sometimes likes to paint in the company of others... So if a tube of paint comes within reach, we will try harder to grab it and use it. Our artist companion can keep the brushes, as she seems to be very attached to these furry ended sticks, sometimes putting them in her mouth and even occasionally stroking it against her cheek but they are small and puny not like the big ones we find when out and about. Of course our tails and paws and mouths work much, much better at covering a large surface area very quickly but we won’t let on just how effective they are or we might become her latest art tools and not just her companions!

3. If we see our 2 legged mom place her painting or drawing on the mantelpiece… We have learnt that this means she needs to walk away from it and think about it for a while. If she stays nearby there seems to be a huge temptation to fiddle. As faithful hounds we will therefore try harder to distract her. We will fetch our leads or balls and take her outside and let her breathe in some fresh air.

4. When out and about… We will be more alert to her observations especially when she has that thing called a camera with her because these seem to be the times she finds things really interesting. We both struggle at the moment to understand what exactly it is that’s so intriguing even though we look very hard too. Maybe with some extra effort and practice this year we will ‘see’ better. It’s obviously something transient that our mom sees because she seems to ‘move to somewhere else’ and look there shortly after we have arrived at the first place.

Any other ideas would be very gratefully received by Ella and Harry

Happy New Year from us all