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Thursday, 30 June 2016

Inspired by History

Have I told you my daughter lives in an historic house in Toronto? It is said to be the oldest home in Etobicoke. It was built from ledge stone found in the Humber River which flows behind the home. Historians believe it was built between 1802 and 1820. I've been captivated by this house ever since we moved to the area. It is a wonderful house for a small family and has great character.

I decided that this was my chance to sketch the home and so I have begun to do that. My plan is that as long as my daughter is living there I will try to document the home, inside and out by sketching it and it's surroundings.

I've made a small beginning. You saw the first sketch I did in my last post. Today I'll show you some others that I have done. I'm going to have to be quick because they may have to move in September.

Thursday, 9 June 2016

Squeezing in Time for Art

This time of year is really busy for us at work. Springtime at a Garden Centre is really, really hectic and that also means my book keeping workload is increased. So, along with all my other chores around our home, I'm not left with a lot of art time.

I find that really difficult because this is the time of year the Irises are in bloom as well as the Peonies and so many other beautiful plants and I just want to get out an sketch them all. And I am the type of person that puts everything before art. That is why I designate Thursdays as my Art Day. But sometimes even Thursdays don't work in the Spring.

What I have discovered is that I can get art done in little snippets of time throughout the week and that is what I have been trying to do. Today I had one of my grandsons with me in the studio. He was fortunate to have me all to himself because usually he has to share me with his sisters. While I had him situated at my table and supplied with PlayDoh, I was able to get some art done as well.

I will also often take a sketchbook or some artwork I'm working on along as I go to babysit my grandchildren. When I am at their homes, my computer is not calling me to the paperwork and so I can relax and get some sketching done. I even try to get projects done while I am cooking dinner but often that ends up in a burnt meal.

Today, I continued to work on my May calendar page. I used a piece of silk scarf for the background and stitched the calendar part onto it. The flowers surrounding the calendar are done with dyed tea bags. I will still have to enhance the flowers with stitching and then it will be done. Next will be June and I am already percolating ideas in my brain for that one.

Another day this week, I was able to sit outside the house next door and sketch a part of the garden.

Thursday, 2 June 2016

Scavenging for Inspiration

I'm sure I got a few strange looks a few weeks ago while on my neighbourhood walk. I was once again walking with my focus on the ground to see what treasures I could find. Every once in a while I would stoop and pick something up, inspect it and decide to keep it or toss it.

When I went to the "My Corner of the World" art quilt show I was inspired by a quilt that was made from a rusted gate. Well, I was inspired by many of the quilts there but this one made me want to try this technique. I think the artist just let a piece of white cotton hang over the gate for a length of time and allowed the rain and sun to work it's magic on it. It slowly became dyed by the rust.

On my walks I had noticed many rusted bottle caps and nails on the ground so on this day I decided to collect any rusted metal I could find to try this technique myself. In the process, I would also be cleaning up parts of my neighbourhood and recycling.

These are the items I found on that walk. I hope to lay them somewhere outside on a piece of white cotton where they won't be disturbed. Each week as I find rusty things I'll add them to the arrangement. Hopefully I will get some areas that are darker than others depending on how long the items have remained on the fabric.