Bloom True Bootcamp Prompt: “Embrace the sensual”

Today’s Bloom True Bootcamp Prompt is “Embrace the sensual”. Flora Bowley encouraged us to try focusing on the FEEL and SOUND of painting. I did this working over two old paintings. Felt really great to just let go and work quickly and intuitively, staying ahead of my critical mind. Black isn’t so scary after all – in fact, it reminds me of doing etchings in art school. It is so bold and rich and I think it will add depth to my quiet and calm paintings. Looking forward to seeing how these develop.



Bloom True Bootcamp: Moon Mandala

Super Moom Mandala created with gesso, acrylics, pencil and ink.

Super Moom Mandala created with gesso, acrylics, pencil and ink.

Today’s prompt for Flora Bowley’s Bloom True Bootcamp is Mandala. I created this last night in celebration of the super moon. My intent was to “let go of perfect” and to “spiral in and spiral out” as Flora describes in her book Brave Intuitive Painting. I met with some resistance when I tried to work loosely but found that in doing so the design was unevenly spaced. So here is me letting go and letting it out into the world even though I’m not in love with it. I am fond of the soft colours and the moon at the centre. 


Mindful Monday: Feather Collage


This is a photograph of a collage that I made this past week while on a sailing trip. I found the feathers on a walk onshore in Desolation Sound. On a sketchbook page that I had primed with gesso before the trip, I added some watercolour paint and then taped down the two feathers. I worked on the photo in Snapseed and 100 Cameras to achieve a peaceful and dreamy feeling of an etching. The colours remind me of the sailing charts we were using and I love the movement of the feathers.

Bloom True Bootcamp: Inviting the Sacred



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My little alter above the sea – I loved how a matching leaf was floating by with the tide.

When I read Flora Bowley’s invitation to Bloom True Bootcamp I was snuggled under the covers, listening to the rain on the cabin roof of La Vita, my parents 34′ Catalina sailboat. We were anchored in beautiful Tenedos Bay in Desolation Sound Marine Park.

I had no cell service at the time but I had remembered I’d received and downloaded Flora’s Bloom True email I the day before. I read through her intention for the project and my artistic heart leapt a little – yes – this is what I need right now! 

Flora is a wonderful artist and teacher and I feel grateful for this opportunity to participate as I have been following Flora’s work for several years but not had the opportunity to take a class yet. I ordered Brave, Intuitive Painting and read it cover to cover shortly before the birth of my daughter in May 2013. In this busy year of becoming a mother I have worked hard to develop my artistic practice. Being away from my job as a substitute elementary teacher for a year has given me the mental space to journey into new artistic practices. I crave opportunities to try new creative practices and find a community or tribe. Bloom True Bootcamp is a great fit for me at this moment in time.

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My little alter created from found materials and a tea light.

After reading Flora’s first prompt on Inviting the Sacred I knew at once that I wanted to create an alter from natural materials. What a beautiful and serene location to create in! Once my daughter was down for her morning nap, I set off to shore with my husband. We found a rocky bluff where I gathered arbutus leaves, a flower, a snail shell, a wasp nest, a fern, clam shells and a blue rope a similar colour to my favourite paint colour. I set them in an arrangement on a rocky shelf above the beautiful waters and lit a tealight. I was happy as this reminded me of the hours I spent collecting and building with natural materials during my childhood summers cruising the coast by sailboat. I wanted to spend a few minutes meditating but the mosquitoes were feasting on me!

Later in the day, my husband, daughter and I took the zodiac out to a marine access campsite called Bold Point. We explored the tent pads, examining rocks, moss and driftwood while being serenaded by the seals on the rocks offshore. The campsite was empty of campers but I found the signs of the people who been there before. I spied this beautiful collection of three eagle feathers placed into madrona tree. It’s seems many people are called to create little alters in nature.

Eagle feathers at the Bold Point Campsite.

Eagle feathers at the Bold Point Campsite.

Isabelle contemplating driftwood collection as Daddy photographs Desolation Sound.

Isabelle contemplating driftwood collection as Daddy photographs Desolation Sound.

I’m delighted to keep exploring through the Boom True Bootcamp prompts. Will you join me?

Fresh Paint Friday: Leafy Green

freshpaintfridayleafygreenToday’s Fresh Paint is a detail of a thank you card that I made for a family we stayed with on the lovely Salt Spring Island. I came home feeling summery and appreciative. Islands are the best!

The card was created with acrylic paint, water based Sharpies and felt pens. It was playful and fun. Inspired by these wonderful artists: Carla Sonheim, Flora Bowley, and Sarah Ahearn.