Mindful Monday: At water’s edge with Isabelle

Being mindful of the last night days of summer, we have been having family picnics near the water several times a week. After eating we explore the beach or park. This was lovely evening at Kin Beach. Photograph by my husband.

At water's edge


Mountain Trails Painting for Debbie


Debbie Landscape

Two weeks ago I blogged about a tiny art piece that I made for my friend Kiyoko.  This sweet little painting is one I created at the same time for my friend Debbie. You’ll notice the similar colour palette in both works. Debbie is a runner, mountain biker, swimmer, mountain race adventurer and mother. [She is also an awesome chiropractor who keeps my body moving!] She is inspirational to me because she is strong and she sets amazing goals for herself. After her daughter was born she worked hard to regain her endurance and strength and was out racing again in no time. It seems like every time I talk to her she is preparing for a new adventure like Snow to Surf, Kusam Klimb, Perseverance Trail Race or Mud, Run, Ride. You might even find her sporting a costume made my Kiyoko when they team up to race!

To me, the deep purple and rich green in this piece are “Debbie colours”. I put the rain pouring down on the mountain as a reference to a recent mountain bike race she did on Vancouver’s North Shore. The three circles represent her, her husband and her daughter. I was pleased when Debbie opened this birthday painting because she said something along the lines that it almost meant as much to her that I made time to make art for her as it did to be receiving a work of art. She knows that my days are busy with my babykins! I love creating special art pieces for people; I hope that when they view the art work in their home it reminds them of their adventures.




Mountain Trails Painting for Kiyoko

comox valley lake glacier forest

I created this tiny piece (4 x 6″) for my friend Kiyoko who is a runner, mountain biker and adventurer. She is inspirational to me in the way she sets goals and challenges for herself and just as importantly for her wonderful enthusiasm. I felt the sunny yellow in this artwork reflects her nature. When she unwrapped it she said she liked the  glacier in the upper part of the work. This is why I love abstracted works – I hadn’t even been thinking of our local Comox glacier when painting but there it is!

I’m still absolutely in love with my Gelli Plate! No more blank canvas/paper stalemate. I love the unexpected nature of printmaking – the mixing of colours and the wonderful textures. I’s a great way to get started in the studio. I began with acrylic gelli printing and then layered in pencil, ink, watercolour and more acrylics.




Mindful Monday #10: Moss at Kye Bay

My eye has been drawn to texture more since I taking a printmaking class with Carla Sonheim last week. I don’t especially like winters on the West Coast but I do love moss. I guess the beautiful greens are worth the rains. I noticed this little patch on a log at my favourite beach, Kye Bay. I captured this photo with my iPhone and it was edited by my lovely, supportive husband.


Sharing the Sunshine!

Jill Clayton, Comox Valley teacher, listed my blog as one of “eleven” to receive the Sunshine Award. Thank you, Jill! This award is actually a way for bloggers to recognize other bloggers, as well as to encourage them to share a little bit more about themselves.

Here is a description of this blogging, twitter-generated, meme-type task:

The Sunshine Award gives others an opportunity to learn about me as a blogger and then, in turn, I will send sunshine the way of 11 (or so) other fine bloggers for you to get to know! Although I know every one is busy at this time of year, I hope the bloggers I nominate will be able to share a few interesting things about themselves. They can then highlight bloggers that they have enjoyed following.

Here are the rules:

Acknowledge the nominating blogger. Share 11 random facts about yourself. Answer the 11 questions the nominating blogger has created for you. List 11 bloggers. They should be bloggers you believe deserve some recognition! Post 11 questions for the bloggers you nominate to answer and let all the bloggers know they have been nominated. (You cannot nominate the blogger who nominated you.)

Here are 11 random facts about me:

  1. I like to put a big dollop of peanut butter in the centre of my steel cut oats. (I’m eating this right now).
  2. I moved to Comox on Vancouver Island several months after my husband  and I got married in 2010. For me it is the closest thing to Vancouver’s North Shore, where I grew up, that we could afford to buy a house and start a family. I love the ocean, river and mountains here!
  3. I have a baby who will be 8 months old next week. She is giggly, smily and I love her to pieces. My favourite place to road trip is Oregon. I especially love hiking in Bend and the Cascades. My husband proposed to me on a hike here and we returned for our honeymoon as well as this past fall with our daughter.
  4. I’m incredibly excited to have received a monoprinting Gelli Plate for Christmas from my father, who has always supported my art making.
  5. I recently started selling my artwork on Fine Art America; an exciting enterprise during my maternity leave.
  6. I grew up sailing the West Coast with my parents and brother. I especially love Desolation Sound.
  7. I like the sound of rain on the roof at night, but prefer sunshine by morning.
  8. My best friend, Claire, lives in London, England. We have been friends since grade 2. She is an excellent writer, has a fantastic sense of humour and made an amazing speech at my wedding. We Skype in lieu of our old Starbucks dates.
  9. I have a hard time getting rid of materials that could be repurposed. Sometimes I finally part with things I haven’t used in years, and then the next month I discover a use for it.
  10. I’m not eating gluten, dairy or soy right now as my nursing baby can’t digest it. It’s totally worth it for her comfort but I really crave sourdough, brie and a chocolate croissant.
  11. For the first time I’m choosing a word for the year. For 2014 my word will be TRUST.

1. If you had an entire day to spend by yourself what would you do? 

I would sleep in, drink coffee and eat that chocolate croissant, go for a hike, do yoga and paint.

2. My favourite animal is a cat because cats are independent yet cuddly, have magical tails, purr, and are good nappers.

3. What worries you about your job?

I’m worried that I will be a substitute teacher for many years yet. It is so hard to get a contract these days. I really want to specialize in primary yet I’ll likely have to take all sorts of crazy assignments to gain seniority.

4. If you were a photographer, what images would you capture?

I am a photographer and I like to capture my daughter, close up images of natural things and landscapes.

5. What is your favourite children’s book? Why?

The Little Duck by Judy Dunn. As a child I loved that it had photographs instead of illustrations. It’s a favourite to read when I sub in Kindergarten.

6. What is hanging on your living room (any room) wall that you cherish the most?

A sculpture of two ravens, given to me by my husband as a wedding gift.

7. Describe your most memorable road trip or vacation.

In my early 20’s I went on my friend’s honeymoon (yes, they invited me and several others!) to the USA. For six weeks we rock climbed in Yosemite and Bishop, CA as well as Red Rocks, NV. It was really amazing to be pushing my climbing, seeing beautiful places and making good memories with great friends.

8. What is your favourite type of cheese?

Baked brie with cranberries or pears.

9. If you cooked your best meal for your family/friends what would it be?

Chilaquiles: it’s like a Mexican lasagne.

10. What do you think about t.v.?

We don’t have one. I’m not on a high horse about it though…I watch plenty of fromage on Netflix. I can’t stand commercials!

11. Who is a person that you would like to get to know more about?

As a new mommy, I’d like to get to know more mommies in my community.

Here are the bloggers that I would like to acknowledge and encourage (share some sunshine with) as their blogs inspire in a variety of ways:

Sandrine Pelissier ARTiful, Painting demos

Flora Bowley Brave Intuitive You

Emily Jeffords Beautiful Hello

Miranda Studio Mothers: Creative Practice and Life Design

Madeleine Sweet Madeleine

Shannon Kinney A Free Spirit Life

Here are my questions for my blogger nominees:

  1. Where is your best thinking place?
  2. What is one of the best decisions you’ve ever made?
  3. Journal or Sketchbook?
  4. What do you do for “play”?
  5. What is your favourite part of your job?
  6. Do you listen to the radio? (if so, using what device?)
  7. If you could take a class on anything this year, what would you learn?
  8. What is something that amazes you?
  9. Do you have a catchphrase?
  10. Where’s your favourite place to take an out-of-town guest?
  11. If you could choose a word for 2014 – an intention – what would it be?