Wednesday, December 12, 2018

10th Annual International Signature American Int’l Watermedia Exhibition

I was very happy to hear yesterday that my painting 'Tigantai' has been selected to be part of the 10th Annual International Signature American Int’l Watermedia Exhibition which opens on February 10th next year and runs until April 21st at the Fallbrook Arts Center in California.

Friday, November 30, 2018

Reflecting on 2018 and Planning for 2019

November is my time both to reflect on the current year and to look forward to the next year. I have just released for sale a few of my smaller demos. These are just 3 of the 5 now available. when I look at them I see not only the story behind the paintings themselves but also the memories of the fun had while painting or sharing them and the friends I made doing it. Thank you all 

I am also currently preparing for my workshops and demos for 2019. I am working on a series of videos for them too so although I have been painting this month, there is nothing I am able to share with you all right at this moment. I am very excited to be planning for several new workshop themes though. Anyone who has taken one of my workshops before we know we have a fun time and learn heaps (and yes, I say we because I always learn things too). In 2019 we will be exploring the Psychology of colour in Cambridge,  playing with textures in Sudbury and learning how to paint a portrait in Burlington. So If anyone is interested in signing up for one of them you can find more details HERE.

Sunday, October 21, 2018

Tigantai: The Butterfly Effect

This little Huaorani girl is Nemonte. She is named after her grandmother the eldest woman in the village who is 80 years old.  Little Nemonte, much like her grandmother, has grown up with the forest, and already knows which fruits to eat and what insects to stay away from. Nemonte shows us a butterfly (Tigantai in Wao). This butterfly is only small, just a tiny living being in a huge world, but when it flaps its wings the movement it creates in the air can change the course of the universe forever.

In other words everything we do matters. Every move we make and every action we take matters, not only to us but to everyone and everything that’s part of our life and our world today, tomorrow and even long after we’re gone.  One single action we take can have a resounding impact on our world for years to come.   So be kind, be tolerant and look after the beautiful world we live in so that others in the future can also enjoy it. 

I was so lucky that my son Chris was able to spend some time with Nemonte and her family recently. As soon as I knew he was going  I knew I had to capture the above idea in a painting. Once I had familiarized myself with her appearance I put the photos away and sketched from my heart to create the image I wanted to paint. The background is purely from my imagination.

Transparent Watercolour 21 by 26 inches on arches 140 lb cold press paper.

Monday, October 15, 2018

Let's help to spread some Love around the World

Hope you will enjoy watching this video I created with help from 7 of my art friends from around the globe

Art has the power to break down boundaries and overcome distances between people. It brings people together - to unify those who live to create and also those who love art. 

I would like to thank seven IWS Canada Symphony in Watercolour Finalists, Lorraine Watry, Alexandra Bryksa, Jan Min, Carrie Waller, Sun Jiangang, William Rogers and Lianne Todd who spent their time helping me to create this video. Please help us to spread some love around our world today.

Friday, October 5, 2018

Dorothy J Corson Award

I was honoured to receive the Dorothy J Corson Award yesterday evening at the opening reception of the CSPWC Open Water International Exhibition.

The exhibition is open until October 26th at the John B Aird Gallery 900 Bay Street Toronto.

Monday, October 1, 2018

Ona's Pumpkin Spice Trio by Da Vinci Paint Co.

  Da Vinci Paint Co. approached me and asked if I would select a trio of their colours to create a special set which I could name. I have called it the Pumpkin Spice Trio. This trio is available from Da Vinci Paint Co. beginning today. The three colours I selected are Quin Red, Raw Sienna and Indanthrene Blue. They are gorgeous colours on their own but together they create magic.... beautiful fall oranges, muted greens, shadow purples and AMAZINGLY rich darks... just perfect for capturing fall colour, pumpkins, ghords or cozy fireplaces.

 Hope you enjoy this brand new Paint along with Ona using these three colours

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Workshop fun

I had a lovely weekend with the Central Ontario Art Association and its sister organisation the East Central Ontario Art Association at Geneva Park. We learnt all about painting white objects.  Thank you to the organizers of the event for making sure it all ran smoothly and thank you to all the participants for their enthusiasm and interest. That is the last of my workshops this year. I have enjoyed them all.

I have just updated the workshop page on my website with the details for next years workshops. If you are interested in attending one reserve your place soon as they are filling up fast!

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Splash 19:Illusion of Light

I am honoured to have my painting 'A Penny for your Thoughts' featured as the lead image for the portrait section of the latest 'Splash 19: The Illusion of Light'  recently published by North Light Books. There are so many amazing images in this book. It is one well worth getting.

Monday, August 20, 2018

For You

'For You' Transparent Watercolour 12 by 18 inches

It has been slow progress painting this as I am also working on getting everything ready for the big IWS CAnada/CSPWC event 'The Symphony In Watercolour' which opens next month. This felt like a really suitable painting to do in the odd moments I had though as it is all about the idea of giving and helping to organize the event next month is my way of giving back.

In this painting I wanted also to capture the feeling of summer -the light of the sunshine, the freshness of the breeze, beauty of the flowers and the joy of being outside. Hope you are all enjoying the summer. Make the most of it while it lasts.

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Scratch board fun

This little Chipmunk is a frequent visitor to our front garden. What do you think he has seen?

I did a workshop this past weekend introducing my students to techniques I use in scratch board and pen and ink. This was the scratch board I was doing to show them how I used the techniques in my work. I finished it at home yesterday. Its drawn on an Ampersand Museum Grade Panel and is 12 by 16 inches in size.

Any ideas for a title?

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Bottoms Up

It has been a lovely  warm sunny few days  so yesterday I painted outside. I love watching the local wildlife at our local pond. These little ducks obviously found something super yummy under the water.

'Bottoms Up' Transparent Watercolour 11.75 by 7.75 inches

Monday, July 2, 2018

Small but Mighty

I've just finished this miniature transparent Watercolour that is just 3 inches by 4 inches in size. Although the kestrel is one of the smallest birds of prey she is much larger in real life than in my painting. The little painted kestrel measures only 2.5 inches by 1 inch and was painted with a magnifying glass and a very small brush.

 This is the painting matted and framed.

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Snuggle 'Down'

This little cygnet is sleeping peacefully in his mother's downy feathers. There is nothing quite like a warm soft downy bed to snuggle up in after a busy day.

'Snuggle down' Transparent Watercolour 11 by 14 inches.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

TWSA Celebration Weekend

I had a wonderful long weekend in Kenosha Wisconsin at the Transparent Watercolor Society of America Celebration weekend. Here are just a few photos from the weekend.

The two other artists with me in the photo below are Anne McCartney and Harold Allanson. Both are also from Canada and both also won awards.

The Juror for awards was John Salminen.

Thank you to all at TWSA for such a great weekend.

Friday, May 18, 2018

Lighting the Way

When you light the way for others, you also brighten your own path

Tower Bridge, London UK. Transparent Watercolour 28 by 18 inches

Walking beside the river Thames in London was something I loved doing, especially at night when the skyline was all lit up. This scene certainly has a place in my heart. The inspiration for the watercolour though was at a much more metaphorical level. The bridge at night lights the way and guides others in the darkness but in doing so it illuminates itself too. When you light the way for others, you also brighten your own path. Only by giving will you be able to receive more than you already have. Light someone's path today and brighten yourself too.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Louisiana Watercolor Society 48th Annual International Exhibition Award

After a fun workshop up in Sudbury, it was wonderful to come home to the news that 'Fly Away Thoughts' had been selected for an award in the Louisiana Watercolor Society 48th Annual International Exhibition.

Thanks to all the hard working directors of LWS for making the exhibition possible.

Monday, May 7, 2018

Tower Bridge WIP 3

The darker areas of the bridge are again taking a while to build up. I'm in no hurry though, just enjoying the process and remembering many times I stood on the side of the Thames thinking how magical the bridge with the city behind it looked when lit up.

Have you got a favourite city view at night?

Sunday, April 29, 2018

Tower Bridge WIP 2

I have taken so long painting the background in this painting that my once daytime scene appears to have changed to to a night time one! Glazing one colour at a time and slowly building up the illusion of night isn't a fast process that's for sure!It is almost as if my time spent was mirrored in my painting as with each layer I added it slowly transformed from day to night.

I am hoping that this week I will get a chance to start work on the bridge itself. It took eight years, five major contractors and the relentless labour of 432 construction workers each day to build the real Tower Bridge. I am hoping I don't take as long to paint it!

Thursday, April 26, 2018

The Zoltan Szabo Founders Award

I received a very nice phone call and e mail today from the Transparent Watercolor Society of America

'Congratulations, Ona!
It is my distinct pleasure to inform you that your painting,’Broken In Transit’,  has been selected to receive the Zoltan Szabo Founders Award'

Hoping to be able to make the trip to Kenosha in June.

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Studio Tour King

We had a lovely time at the Studio Tour King. Thank you to everyone who visited. It was wonderful catching up with old friends and making new ones.

The cards, prints, books and bookmarks are always a popular. My original Watercolour 'A Drop of light' and Interest-Ted were two of the originals that sold.

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Adirondacks National Exhibition of American Watercolors.

I was very happy to receive an e mail today to say that 'Vertigo' had been accepted into the Adirondacks National Exhibition of American Watercolors. It looks like it is going to be an amazing exhibition.

The exhibition will open on August 4th and run until September 30th at The View Arts Center, 3273 State Route 28, Old Forge, NY. 

You can see a sneak peak of the full exhibition online.

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Work in Progress

We are in the middle of an ice storm here in southern Ontario... not my idea of April weather but on a positive note it's a great excuse to stay in and paint.

I thought I would step outside of my comfort zone and attempt an architecture style landscape. As you probably know I paint one colour at a time in layers.  I am painting vertically because I need gravity to help me out with the water reflections. After 3 colours the background is beginning to take shape. Does anyone recognize where it is yet?

Tuesday, March 27, 2018


Life is a puzzle without edges. No one is born with all their pieces, or knowing what their life puzzle looks like. It's something that has to be pieced together as we go. Eventually all the pieces will fall into place but until that time we just have to accept the confusion, live for each moment and know that even when things dont immediately fall into place things happen for a reason.

Transparent Watercolour 23 by 14 inches

Saturday, March 24, 2018

Puzzled WIP

It has been weeks since I had time to pick up a brush! But now that entries are in for our IWS Canada event, I've started painting again. I think my model for this painting though thinks that in the time apart from my brushes I've lost the plot!  It looks just like he is thinking 'Just why are you painting a section of my head all the way up there? Hoping to get this painting finished over the coming week (fingers crossed)

Saturday, March 17, 2018

IWS Czech Republic Exhibition

One of my watercolours will be shipped off soon to the Czech Republic for an International exhibition. This will be my first time exhibiting outside of North America. It is very exciting.

 It is an honour to represent Canada in this exhibition.

Monday, February 26, 2018

Transparent Watercolor Society of America 42nd Annual Exhibition Acceptance

I received this e mail this afternoon:

"We are pleased to inform you that our Jurors, John Salminen, TWSA DM, AWS, NWS and Soon Y Warren, TWSA, AWS, NWS have selected 'Broken in Transit' for the 2018 Transparent Watercolor Society of America 42nd Annual Exhibition."

 Oh MY Goodness!!! That means I'm going to actually have to ship 'Broken in Transit'! I am going to be on tender hooks and willing it to arrive in one piece. Very excited but very nervous too.

Saturday, February 24, 2018

Louisiana Watercolor Society's 48th Annual International Exhibition Acceptance

I am delighted to have a painting accepted into Louisiana Watercolor Societies 48th Annual International Exhibition. An amazing selection of work has been chosen by Juror John Salminen. It promises to be a great exhibition.

My selected painting is 'Fly Away Thoughts' So much of what we see with our eyes is transient and ephemeral. Sights rest with us for only a brief moment and then fly away, just like butterflies. What we feel with our hearts in contrast is everlasting and eternal.

The exhibition will take place from May 5th-25th at the Place St.Charles, New Orleans.

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Inner Symphony

In the fall, IWS Canada, CSPWC  and the Richmond Hill Philharmonic Orchestra are collaborating to showcase an international exhibition of Watercolours. As president of IWS Canada  I really wanted to create a watercolour that was uniquely relevant to our event, so for my painting I decided to capture the artistic director of the Philharmonic,  Dr. Jessica Kun,  as she conducts our 'Symphony in Watercolour' closing performance.

In this performance Jessica will  take our audience on a journey around the world.  As the orchestra play a selection of music, watercolours from both our Canada 150 finalists and the finalists of this years exhibition will be projected onto a large screen behind the orchestra. Led by Jessica the world will unite in a celebration of music and art.

I will leave you all to imagine the music that Jessica can hear in my painting or what images she can see in her minds eye. Maybe you would like to paint an image and submit it to our juried exhibition. You never know... maybe your painting will be one that inspires Jessica to select a piece of music for the evening.

If you would like to enter our exhibition, please follow the instructions in our call to artists

Sunday, January 28, 2018

41st WAS-H International Watermedia Exhibition

My Transparent Watercolour Red Alert' will be off to Houston Texas  for the WAS-H 2018 International Watermedia Exhibition.The juror for the exhibition is Iain Stewart. The exhibition opens on March 4th. Please cross your fingers and toes there are no red alerts for this painting as it travels to the exhibition.

Friday, January 19, 2018


It's been ages since I had fun painting  a Ted so when I thought of this idea I just couldn't resist.

 It's been pretty chilly here over the last few weeks. Temperatures have been well below zero with heaps of snow. Despite the frigid temperatures one of my little bears was quite happy to pose while I painted him. As you know though, I am not a fast painter....I think little Frost-Ted would really like to come inside now. Do you think you can you let him in?

Transparent Watercolour 7.5 by 9 inches

Monday, January 8, 2018

Broken In Transit

'Broken in Transit!!!!....the nightmare of all artists who transport paintings to and from exhibitions! We put so much of our hearts into our work and are so pleased when they are accepted into big exhibitions ... then this happens...

I think my models face says exactly how we feel. Don't you?

Thank you so much to Garry Sugden for agreeing to be my model for this painting. Think I am going to have to find a really distressed frame for this one.

Transparent Watercolour 25.5 by 17.25 inches

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

The Teds are featured in the International Watercolor Magazine's 3rd Issue

It was a great start to the new year to receive a copy of the latest issue of the International Watercolor Magazine. I have a 6 page feature in this magazine. My Teds have been eagerly awaiting this issue all holidays and so, of course, when it arrived we had to all sit down for story time.


I am honored to be featured alongside Alvaro Castagnet, Myint Naing, Huang Zhigang, Olga Litvinenko, Sun Jiangang, Dino Dante Pajao, Ouyang Songbai, Ouyang Songbai, Shi Zengxiu, and Mark Mehaffey in this issue.

You can purchase the magazine online

Happy New Year to you all.