I recently had the privilege of painting this beautiful home for a wedding gift...I love painting images like this as they always incorporate colours and patterns that are important to the couple:
'Exploring the Art of Travel Journals' is now available as a download which includes a PDF and video in my Shop online here. In this workshop, we'll dive into the world of travel journalling together. I'll introduce you to my personal sketchbooks, offering insights into how I work while traveling and how I transform my experiences into captivating visuals. We'll explore a variety of watercolour techniques, and I'll demonstrate how to create beautiful entries with minimal supplies, making it easy to carry your artistic passion with you on your journeys.
For me, keeping a travel journal has become a deeply fulfilling art form, a passport to reliving my adventures and emotions long after the journey ends. It's a way to encapsulate the essence of a place and time, and through this workshop I'm excited to share my travel journalling techniques and practices with you using limited supplies to ensure success. I hope you'll join me!
One of the practices that I have found to be very important as an artist is keeping sketchbooks. Currently I have several that I'm working on...one that features canoes, another two are travel journals (one local and one for larger trips), and another is for portrait practice. One of my sketchbooks is capturing the teacups I have received over the years. In this one I have been playing with a variety of watermedia...watercolour pans, pencil crayons, crayons and markers. It has been wonderful to figure out materials and takes so much pressure off to create something totally finished. It also allows me to work slow or fast, which is great for creativity.
Throughout my career as an artist, at times I have worked in business, raised children, moved, written for publication, and began working toward a Bachelor of Arts undergraduate degree. As much as I have also enjoyed painting live, teaching, giving talks, and sitting on arts & culture boards, I have also felt overwhelmed at times. Now that I am entering a time of change in my life, I have been asked: Who am I? What do I want? What do I need? The answers are abundantly clear...I am a painter...I want to paint & to continue learning...I need to live life on my terms, which means being a little quieter for awhile to focus on myself. So that is what I will do in the new year. As much as I have loved being of service to others, I think it is finally time for me. And I'm excited for that.
As a voracious reader, ‘A Room of One’s Own’ by Virginia Woolf is an essay that I return to often and during the pandemic, the value of a space to call my own became even more important. In the early days of my career as a young mother, I focused on large paintings of simplified interiors, but with recurring health issues my work has slowly reduced in size, while texture and pattern have become a greater focus. The pieces incorporate lace texture as a nod to an earlier time, while still featuring the books and stories that imbue most of my work. The themes of sanctuary and stillness continue to prevail.
“I n her essay, Woolf uses metaphors to explore social injustices and comments on women's lack of free expression. Her metaphor of a fish explains her most essential point, "A woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction". She writes of a woman whose thought had "let its line down into the stream". As the woman starts to think of an idea, a guard enforces a rule whereby women are not allowed to walk on the grass. Abiding by the rule, the woman loses her idea. Here, Woolf describes the influence of women's social expectations as mere domestic child bearers, ignorant and chaste.
The political meaning of the text is directly linked to this metaphor. When the emergence of the 'new woman' occurred, this awareness of injustice made a clear political statement regarding women's intellectual potential in their own right. Therefore, the broader literary influence of this argument reveals the increase in social tension as the century's shift looms. Woolf suggests that the absence of female fiction is a result of a lack of opportunity rather than a distinct absence of talent.
The association between poverty and low achievement can also lead to disadvantages for generations. As women have been for decades marginalized and the patriarchy dominated literature, Woolf's general theory can be extended to many political circumstances. In this case, children are extremely conscious of their social status and thus aware of their own possibilities or absence, similar to the 'fish' metaphor in which women were aware of their position and lost their 'thinking'. It helps us to see how social problems shift shape, but the absence of opportunity still causes isolation and inequality.”