Dec 23, 2014

Christmas Greetings to Everyone


Merry Christmas and a Joyous New Year 
from Wendy, Steve and Rusty

Hunt and Peck - 12 x 16 - watercolour

This little pair of Downy Woodpeckers arrived at our feeder late this fall. They were only here for a few days but managed to fit a photo shoot into their busy schedule.  I was delighted with my pictures and featured them with a sudden early snow fall for my Christmas Picture.

Steve, Rusty and I are very excited to spend Christmas with our family, our little grandson is now 1 and walking so he will add a special note to our celebration.  We hope that you will have a wonderful time with family and friends.
See you in the New Year,

Special Note: 
February is Marketing Month for Artists!!
My all day Marketing Workshop is set for Sunday, February 22, 2015.  Build your Marketing Skills to become an Independent Artist.  See my Marketing Page for more information and registration.

 Contact Wendy to purchase any of my Work.  Collectors enjoy a 10% on all original work.

Dec 20, 2014

More Bumps lead to a Small Fry!!


My adventures with bumps continues!!

Two In The Sunshine - 3.25 x 3.25 - watercolour

After finishing my last little miniature, I have been fired up to try again.  My Christmas commissions were finished so back I went.

The first layers of paint look terrible! Bumpy, flat and uninviting.  Was this really how the colours worked.  It has been over a week so I wasn't sure.  I pressed on.

Glazed with my colours.  The richness started to emerge.  I glazed some more.

"Supper time", my husband said.
"Hold on."I responded.
"Things are getting cold."
"Okay, just a minute."

It was so hard to stop, things were working!  New ideas were flying!  Try a little more blue. Hit it with some yellow. The purple needs more red.  Blue green here.  Don't forget the sun glow on the leaves.
Suddenly I was done!

Black-eyed Susies, one of my favourite flowers, lots of yellows and reds, glowing in the sunshine.  They come late in the summer to help keep that summer glow alive.

Special Note: 
February is Marketing Month for Artists!!
My all day Marketing Workshop is set for Sunday, February 22, 2015.  Build your Marketing Skills to become an Independent Artist.  See my Marketing Page for more information and registration.

 Contact Wendy to purchase any of my Work.  Collectors enjoy a 10% on all original work.

Dec 11, 2014

Can "Bumps in the night" be a good thing?


It started when I decided to make colour theory my learning focus. 

Being basically a black and white person with my art I have always found colour a challenge.  I had been reading about French Ultramarine Blue (FUBlue) and what a wonderful colour it was.  Ultramarine Blue (UBlue) has been my standby but my book said they were not the same.  Well as you probably already know, they sure aren't!  

Colour-wise they look similar but they act quite different. It is a colour that likes to granulate.

The big surprise came with Mini Sunshine!  I carefully drew the picture, put down some frisket and did my wash: Alizarine Crimson and French Ultramarine mixed to lovely purple colour.  Things were very wet so I left my piece till morning.
Detail from that first wash. 

Wow!! Were there ever bumps in the night!  

You guessed it.  I had my purple but intermixed were flecks of blue.  I thought my piece was ruined. 

I studied it for a bit and decided to push ahead and finish. It seemed the best way to really learn. I used the FUBlue to mix with my yellow for my greens, the texture from the granulation really did add a new dimension.  I glazed with it. Kind of neat. I changed to my yellows and reds and painted the flower.  Here it is. 
 Mini Sunshine - 3.25 x 3.25 -  watercolour 

 I kind of like the contrast of the smooth yellow petals and granulated colours.

I went back to my last picture "River Run", some of you may have noticed the interesting texture in the background rocks.  I used FUBlue there as well, but with a mixture of other colours and salt, there was lots of action.  Now I realize that most of the action was from the FUBlue.  

Detail from River Run, my last post. 

I have a second miniature started with the same colours, I was holding back on it but now I am anxious to get it underway.  This FUBlue, does add a different dimension.  It won't replace my UBlue but I can see it will definitely be in the mix again.
Have a great day,

Special Note:
February is Marketing Month for Artists!!  
My all day Marketing Workshop is set for Sunday, February 22,  2015.  Build your Marketing Skills to become an Independent Artist.  See my Marketing Page for more information and registration.

Dec 1, 2014

Have you seen the River Run??


Squawk!! Screech!!
It's mine!!
No mine!!
I found it!!
Squeals and Screeches fill the air.
The river is alive with sound!
During the hot summer things were quiet, the water a slow trickle weaving through the rocks, in no special hurry out to sea.
But now it's fall!!

The winds are howling, leaves are dancing and the river is a raging beast, filled by our heavy rains. This is the time of the salmon!
River Run - 12 x 16 - Watercolour -Available

They have been waiting out in the bay for the rivers to rise so they can start their trek up to the spawning grounds. With them comes a collections of others: eagles, bears, seals and gulls.  To name just a few.  All waiting for the salmon.

To watch the run is breathtaking.  How can they do it?  The water is so fast, the rapids so rough and  the elevation changes so steep. Still they move on, up river to the spawning grounds.

This year on the coast it was a bumper year, a record numbers of sockeye were returning.  We decided to join the migration and head to Adams River, the site of biggest sockeye spawning ground in southern British Columbia. It was amazing to see the fish at the end of the run, brilliant red and green shining in the sunlight.

Driving up from the west coast east to the Interior of British Columbia, we really appreciated their journey.  They had entered the Fraser River early in September and reached the Adams River by mid October.  Quite a feat if you have ever seen the Hell's Gate section of the Fraser River Canyon!!

Once the eggs are laid the fish die. Their bodies litter the rivers, providing food for gulls and eagles. They come from everywhere to share in the feast.

River Run is part of this story.  The gulls have found a dead fish, wedged in the rocks and now they are squawking and screeching: announcing their find and claiming their share.  The river is full of these sounds as this ritual is happening at every crevice and rock along the shore.  Quite a sight to see!
Have a great day,
Special Note: February is Marketing Month for Artists!!  My all day Marketing Workshop is set for Sunday, February 22, 2015.  Build your Marketing Skills to become an Independent Artist. See my Marketing Page for more information and registration. 

Nov 24, 2014

Have you had a "fight to the finish"?


 You Begin,

Then Retreat!

Move forward again

Step Back!

and Battle On!

Mine started very innocently.  I was excited, I had a wonderful photo  of two little House Sparrows perched on a bird house from my trip to  Kilby Historical Site at Harrison Mills. I had great plans for the painting and I even had a title ready to go!

My plan: a square painting; the view on an angle; use the shingle line to lead to my focal point. I was ready!

My colours were mixed and I started to work. The shingles were fun to paint, I incorporated all my main colours into them, made them interesting and I felt they seemed to have a bit of life to them. That's when the trouble started!

My shadow colour killed my shingles!  

I fought back - switched to a purple black.  My shingles started to breath again.  I glazed them with Quin Burnt Orange, then again. Things were looking bleak.  I advanced - I painted the birdhouse!  My husband came by "those colours look funny" he commented. 

Definitely Time to Retreat!

I grabbed my colour theory books, I read, I experimented. 
I glazed and lifted. 
We battled!

Finally we collapsed, the colours were working
my picture had come to life!!

I relaxed and started to move on. But wait, a final skirmish! at the Framing Table!
The shape didn't work, the square was out.

I cropped!

"House Hunting" was born!
House Hunting - 4.5 x 6.5 - Watercolour

Special Note:  February is Marketing Month for Artists. My all day Marketing Workshop is set for Sunday, February 22, 2015.  See my Marketing Page for more information. 

Nov 15, 2014

Visitors come to visit, but should they stay for days??


It's great to have Visitors!

They change things up!

They renew friendships!

But what happens when they stay for DAYS!!

Just Arrived - Watercolour - 3.5 x 5.5   Available

This little Dark-eyed Junco just arrived the other day at our feeder.  He will stay till spring. Not sure where he was all summer but his arrival signals change!  Sure enough, we were enjoying an endless summer, suddenly wind storms, rain, deep cold and winter is here!!

But this little visitor is not like the smelly fish that Martha Stewart talks about in Visitor Etiquette.  The one you hope will leave after a few days. He is a welcomed friend. He brings life to our gray, bare trees on a drab winter day!

I wanted to capture the colours just at the moment of change with my Junco.  The reds and golds are everywhere but still that sense of summer green is in the air.  "JUST ARRIVED" seems to fit the bill!

Special Update:
Our Stellar Jay (see last post)  gave me a real surprise yesterday.  I was working in my studio when there came a tap on my patio door.  There was my jay, with his friend and a squirrel looking back at me!!

Christmas Show:
Thursday, Nov 20-Sunday, Nov. 23, 10-4pm daily, GardenWorks at Mandeville, 4746 Marine Dr., Burnaby.  
Christmas Card Making Workshops happening there as well - Thursday, Nov 20, 1-3pm.  $35 Refreshments and supplies included.  Limited space, phone 604-434-4111 to register. More info on my Workshop Page
See you there!!

Nov 6, 2014

Bold as Brass - Animal Artistry comes Alive


What fun!!
We have been adopted!!
Yes, this little stellar jay has adopted us!

Isn't he a beauty!

Has some great poses!

Loves to sit for a picture!!

Well we have encouraged him, just a bit!!

This little jay came to our feeder just a few days ago and seems to have put us on his daily route.  Each morning he comes around, checks the feeder and to see what's happening, chasing all the little birds off to the trees.  I decided to throw him some of the peanuts that we  had ready for squirrel treats.  He was very pleased and of course came back for more.  I quickly grabbed my camera and took a few shots. 
 I needn't have hurried!

He was prepared to do lots of tricks as long as the peanuts kept coming!!

Not sure where he put them, as he flew away and was back in minutes. I was happy to get my shots and ready to move on.  He wasn't!! He had lots to say when I stopped. Since then he arrives like clockwork each day looking for a treat, even coming up to the patio door to see what's keeping us.  A very bold little guy!!  

Of course I had to paint him!!

Bold as Brass - Watercolour - 5.5 x 4.5 Available

I love the character of these birds.  They are bold as brass at the campsite, coming right up to the table to check for scraps.  Poor Rusty, our dog, has often lost his dinner to their quick action at meal times.  They have no qualms at standing close by, studying the action, waiting for the moment and grabbing their reward.  We see them often when we are camping,  it brings back those summer memories to see them here at home. 
Have a great day,

Oct 30, 2014

Can you teach an Old Dog New Tricks??!!


Am I really set in my ways?

Yes, I have my favourite colours
...favourite brushes
...favourite paper 

I think I am open to change!!

 This summer brought a new focus to my work.  My travels took me into the interior for British Columbia, away from the blues of the ocean and into the land of the Greens!! I realized that I needed to know a lot more about colour mixing to deal with those greens.  My search led me to coloured pencils!!
I loved them!!

Easy to add colour, easy to control and easy to draw with, what more could you ask?!
My experiments with colour lead to this new mini series "The Red, White and Blue of Summer". 

 Indian Paintbrush - Coloured Pencil on Black Board - 8 x 10

 Western Anemone (Moptop) - Coloured Pencil on Black Board - 8 x 10

Mountain Daisy - Coloured Pencil on Black Board - 8 x 10

I found I was introducing different colours with each layers and it really seem to bring them more to life.  The flower stems are a great example: I really worked on picking up the reflected light from the flowers, other leaves and the light.  It was really fun to see how things worked together instantly - no waiting for paint to dry!!  

Now I am off to use my watercolours and try some new combos. 

"The Red White and Blue of Summer"is about the meadow flowers that bloom so profusely on Mount Revelstoke and other alpine valleys.  These lovely flowers live such a short life, only 2-3 weeks then it is frost and back to winter!!  But while they are there it is a really beautiful sight. 

This will be one of my pictures from my Residency for the Art in the Park 2014 show running November 7 - December 5, 2014 in Revelstoke, BC.  The show will travel for a year promoting the 100th Anniversary of the Park and the Parks Program in Canada.  

You can read about the Artist in Residency at Mount Revelstoke in my August posts.  It was a great opportunity and one you might enjoy in the future.
Special Note: To learn more about the Residency see my first three August 2014 Posts beginning with this One

Oct 23, 2014

Have you ever been Lost in Greens??


You know, 
Green Trees
Green Grass
Green Plants
Green Everywhere!!

It all becomes Green!!
Summer Flowers Come to Balssm Lake - Watercolour - 11 x 14

This is not usually a problem for me as my Plein air painting is by the ocean. There are blues, reds, browns and yellows. Green is just a small part of the mix. But this summer I was painting on Mount Revelstoke. Green everywhere! Yes, there were little lakes in the some of the alpine valleys but they were full of 'green' reflections!  It really challenges you as an artist to see other colours and to create many different greens.

I had my Daniel Smith GreenGold, which I like mixed with Ultramarine it gives great colours for our coastal firs.  But here I needed more: I mixed reds, blues and yellows with my greens.  Always trying for those elusive changes in the shadows, in the sun, in the distance and in the  foreground. Of course when you really let your eyes do their work you can see other colours as well: the bright yellow Mountain Arnica and dazzling red Indian Paintbrush dancing in the sunlight; the ghostly gray branches left from snow damage in the winter; even the beds of white Partridgefoot, all work to break up the green.  Once I focused on these other things, life got better!!

"Summer Flowers come to Balsam Lake" was the results of my 'green adventure'.  I must admit at times I struggled to bring in more colour but once I got rolling I felt things came together.  Yes, there is still lots of greens but it has a sense of the life and colour the way it was the day I sat and painted by the lake.

This picture will be part of the Art in the Park 2014 running November 7 - December 5, 2014 in Revelstoke, BC.  The show will travel for a year promoting the 100th Anniversary of the Park and the Parks Program in Canada.  I have just learned that the show will be here in Surrey for June 2015 which means I will get to see it!!  Very excited about that!!

For information on working Plein Air see my Plein Air Adventures Page with this blog.  Lots of tips to help make your adventures Great!!

Special Note: To learn more about the Residency see my first three August 2014 Posts beginning with this One

Oct 16, 2014

OMG!!! Is This Neat or What??!!


You know Journal are my Thing!

I have tried lots of different ones.

But, I think even for me,

This Journal is Over the Top!!

To begin with I had a Problem.

It was with my Artist in Residency at Revelstoke National Park this summer.  They wanted a Journal for our time in the park. It was only a short time so I really didn’t want to start one of my usual books.  What would I do with the rest of the book?  (I know, a bit of my thriftiness there!)  So I decided that I needed to make my own Journal just for that event. 

Basic travel kit for my Journal

I settled on a flip type journal.  The pages are like an accordion and you can make it as long or short as you like.  It worked great!  I attached it to a little clipboard and as you can see all my materials fit into a small ziplock bag:  small, compact, easy to carry and easy to use.  The pages are just right for a quick note or sketch, 3.5 in by 5.5 in.  My favourite medium is ink with graphite. ( You can do quick sketches and then get lots of values with your pencil, much faster than crosshatching with your pen.)

Front Cover: Balsam Lake
Back Cover: Mountain View from the Summit

 Of course my little journal needed a front and back cover and that is where the real fun began!!  I decided to use 4 x 6 in.  canvases that I have been holding on to forever.  I treated them with gesso and absorbent ground so I could use watercolour and then started painting.  It was so much fun to make little coloured pictures to go with the black and white pages.  (You know I love miniature things so this was all right up my alley!)

The finished pictures then had to be varnished to protect them, would you believe 6 coats?  After that I glued it all together with a cord to close it and my Journal was complete!

 Very neat eh?!!

Sorry to say I have to say good bye to my Journal for awhile it will be part of my work for the "Art in the Park 2014" show which will open Nov. 7- Dec. 5, 2014 in Revelstoke, BC.  The show will then travel for a year promoting the 100th Anniversary of the Park and the Parks Program in Canada. If you are in the area check out the show!

For more ideas for Plein Air work or Journaling see my Plein Air Adventures Page in my blog.  
Special Note: To learn more about the Residency see my first three August 2014 Posts beginning with this One

Oct 8, 2014

Have You been to the Dark Side??


I mean the REALLY,REALLY Dark Side!

Where everything is black or shades of gray and
White is a stranger!

That's where this drawing has taken me!

Eyes of the Forest - Graphite, 20 x 16

Eyes of the Forest is a drawing of a Northern Hawk Owl that we were fortunate to see while hiking on Mount Revelstoke.  It was settled in amongst a group of firs on a branch.  As you can see from the picture below he was well camouflaged.  We would not have seen him had we not heard his call just before we arrived.
Can you find my owl??  Pretty well hidden, eh?

I really wanted to capture the way he blends into the tree.  I realized it required moving into the Dark Zone.  In drawing we have a name for it!  Bright, light pictures are High Value pictures and pictures full of dark, gray tones are Low Value.  Most pictures are in the mid-range with a more even spread of values.  Working in the Dark Zone can lead to black  mess!!  A dangerous place for an artist!

To work on my picture I put my darkest dark near the owl's head.  I did that quite early on in process so I had a point of comparison.  When I studied my picture I kept reminding myself, that's my 10, is this a 10.  (Artist talk for really dark!)  This helped me to keep most of the drawing in the mid value range and even move up to light grays with some of the moss and branches.  I really wanted to capture a shaft of light going across his chest and I picked it up with a bit of the branches around him as well.  When I was done, I was very pleased.  My owl is there but there is a really strong sense of the kind of environment we found him in.   

Eyes of the Forest will be off to Revelstoke later this month, he will be part of the Art in the Park  2014 show which will open in Revelstoke Nov. 7th.- Dec 5, 2014.  The show will then travel for a year promoting the 100th Anniversary of the Park and the Parks Program in Canada.  Pretty exciting, eh?

Capturing animals in graphite is one my passions and one of my specialties.  If you would like to commission a drawing of one of your pets Contact Me .  I would be pleased to work with you to bring your project to life.  See more of my Pet Commission Work on my Commission A Drawing Page. 
Special Note: To learn more about the Residency see my first three August 2014 Posts beginning with this One

Sep 30, 2014

Can you Draw Upside Down???


I mean work away with everything
Paper, reference photo reversed!

Necessity forced me to give it a go!!

Western Hawk Owl (We think)

My Owl is one of my projects for the Mount Revelstoke Show from my Residency this summer. I really wanted to emphasis my owl up in the tree; hence the long, thin format.  However, it was far to uncomfortable when working on the top, to lean over the whole picture so I decided to turn things around.

What a difference it made!

When you work on a drawing it is so easy to fall into a pattern of drawing 'what you think is there' rather than 'what is there'.  That old left brain, right brain thing comes into play.  The left brain sees a branch and says, yeah, that's a branch and it looks like this.  But the right brain says well no, it kind of bends here, moves there, gets lighter and darker, it seems to have a life of its own.  Unfortunately, the left brain usually win these discussions and the drawing ends up looking very boring with everything looking very nondescript.

Working upside down I found that I worked with shapes and values more, my poor left brain had no idea what I was drawing and kind of left me alone.  It made it so much easier to create tangled branches with interesting shapes and lots of volume.

I turned the picture around so you could see how things were going!

We spotted this owl when hiking on the trails on Mount Revelstoke. We were really very fortunate to see him as he totally blended into the dead branches of the tree in a very dark and shady spot. I tried several settings on my camera to get some shots and was really pleased that some of my pictures turned out.  We are not quite sure what kind of owl he is but we think he is a Western Hawk Owl.  We are just waiting for confirmation.  I should know by the time I am finished.
Note: Just confirmed it is a Northern Hawk Owl.  Oct. 6, 2014

Well I have to get my peddle to the metal and get this guy finished, he has to be ready to head off to Revelstoke by Thanksgiving Weekend!!

Capturing animals in graphite is one of my passion and one of my specialties.  If you would like to commission a drawing of one of your pets Contact Wendy .  I would be pleased to work with you to bring your project to life.  See more of my Pet Commission Work on my Commission Page.  

Special Note: To learn more about the Residency see my first three August 2014 Posts beginning with this One

Sep 23, 2014

Can you draw White with a Gray Pencil???


What does white look like?

Is White really White?

How do you do that with a gray pencil?

Arctic Travelers - 9 x 12 , Graphite - Available

When it came time to draw my snow geese, this was my problem!! 

I studied the drawing and determined what was pure white.  Highlights mostly.   They became my guide:  The Zero Value.  Everything else had some value of gray. I then worked up the scale, carefully creating shades of gray till the final dark was reached.

Of course I didn't stop there!!  I like to blend my graphite which gives that lovely soft tone to the light areas.   But it does require many layers to get the darks. For me it is worth the effort, I love the soft feathery look it gives my geese.

My Arctic Travelers are Lesser Snow Geese visiting the marshlands at Riefel Bird Sanctuary.  They come each fall from Wrangel Island, Russia, in the Arctic Ocean, north of Siberia.  Hard to believe they travel 5,000 km each October to winter on the farmers' fields and marshlands here in the Fraser Valley.  They can travel at pretty good speeds; some of  them have been tracked flying non-stop from Alaska to here (2500 km) in less than 36 hours!

The younger geese stay with their parents for quite awhile.  They have a light gray colour rather than the bright white. This threesome is the parents with one of their kids!

Capturing animals in graphite is one of my specialties, if you would like to commission a drawing of one of your pets Contact Me.  I would be pleased to work with you to bring your project to life.  See more of my Animal Commission work on my Commission Page.. 

Sep 11, 2014

What does Pink really look like??


Blush, Brillant, Coral, Classic,  Fluorescent, Deep or Dark?

Oh, don't forget Hot and Cold!

How do you know you have Pink?

AFTERNOON TEA - Watercolour, 16 x 20, matted, unframed $450

Working on Afternoon Tea I found myself deep in the Pink !
Fuchsias have four lovely long, slender, pink sepals spreading out to cover shorter broader, purple petals below.  Seems easy enough but when it came time to paint "the pink", things became a challenge. 

 In artist's language we use the term "local colour", pink was the local colour but what really does that mean.  There is: pink in the sunlight; pink in the shade; and pink in the reflected light. The sunlight and the shade also have soft parts and harsh bright or dark parts.  Then consider that the reflected light comes from the other petals, both pink and purple, the leaves and the sky.  Of course the sky and the leaves have their own "colour thing" going on as well but let's not get into that!  

I tried to work with a bit of a formula for each flower, but quickly gave that up. No formula worked! Each petal had its own story! I worked each petal with light wet glazes often changing the colour 3 or 4 times within a petal.  Sometimes leaning to a warm colour and sometimes to the cold, trying to respond to each of the "colour" demands.  I must admit sometimes I didn't know whether I was coming or going! 

So like my little hummingbird, I invite you to flutter amongst the blossoms and enjoy their lovely pinks and mauves and greens and blues!!  Enjoy!  It is fun to look at but a challenge to paint!!

Happy to Join my picture The Fire Dance in Salmon Arm!!

Special Note: I was up to Salmon Arm last week for the reception of the 46th Open National Juried Exhibition of the Society of Canadian Artists.  As many of you know my painting "The Fire Dance" was a successful entry in the show.  Sad to say it did not win an awards but it was picked as the Cover Picture for the Show Cateloge!!  The show runs until the Sept 27, at the Salmon Arm Art Gallery.  Stop by if you are in the area. 

Have a great day,

Aug 25, 2014

Wind Dancers emerges from Combat!!

Three... Two...One..
Artists Begin!!

Yes, there was an  "OMG" moment!
But then,
I made a mark!

It's true, when you start making marks you start to roll.

I settled in and began to do my layout.  My Practice sessions really helped here.
Just Getting Down to Business

Suddenly I could feel the rhythm I had in my studio, I knew I would be okay.  As I worked away I even took a moment to glance around.  My family, my loyal supports, were everywhere. Cathy was taking pictures, Melissa, Chris and Steve gave me friendly smiles and encouraging words.  I began to feel that calm as the drawing unfolds.
Putting in the finishing touches!
It was surprising really; 45 minutes in the studio seemed like ample time but 45 minutes in competition was different!!
Interesting too, we all had our own approaches and our own subjects.  It made for a great show for the spectators.  (As reported by my family and friends!)

Tammy with her neat trees
Jesse's Landscape
Busy putting on the final touches

WIND DANCERS has arrived!!

Sad to say Wind Dancers, in pastels, was not the winner.  But would I do it again?
You bet!!!
 Congratulations to Marilyn, here with her winning picture

All the pictures from both the Battle Sessions will be on display at the
Good Day Sunshine Cafe, 2950 King George Blvd #100, Surrey until Aug 31.  
The pictures are being sold in a Silent Auction with a percentage of the sales going to Semmiahmoo Art Council.  
Come down and see what happened in 45 minutes!!  
Have a great day,
PS: The Cafe is located in the group of shops behind Staples at Morgan Crossings.

Aug 22, 2014

For Mountain Goats it maybe a walk in the park, For Me, NOT!!

Shear rock faces sweeping down to mountain meadows below
Loose rock slipping under foot
Not a tree, bush or guard rail in sight!!
They tell me the view was amazing!

My father was really the problem,
He passed on his fear of heights!!
I have tried to fight it but sometimes it gets the better of me.  This was one of those times!!
Eve Lake is near the rocky area in the top left corner, some of the slide areas we crossed are above my head

The hike to Eve Lake is billed as a "classic sub-alpine hike over gently rolling terrain leading to a high
 elevation lake."  Yes I was a little worried about my endurance, 6 km one way,  but the elevation change of 209 m didn't sound bad.  I didn't want to be a drag on the group but I really wanted to go!

Michelle, one of the Park Rangers and our guide for the day, met us in the parking lot.  She was wonderful, a fountain of knowledge for our million questions and didn't bat an eyelash at all the photo stops.  She has done the hike many times but for us it was a wonderful new adventure.  The trail wound around the side of the mountain, through several ecosystems, as we moved back and froth from the shady side to sunny side. No bears thankful but no mountain goats either.

One of the Slide areas, pretty good eh?  I managed to take a picture of it!!
At the half way point I felt great and the decision was made to go the distance.  It was shortly after that, that the fun began.  The slide areas!  You know where the avalanches come down and clean off the side of the mountains!!  There were little trails winding across their face and they wanted me to go on them!!

I took a deep breath, focused on my feet and kept my head down.  Going up proved to be okay!!  (Later on, during the return trip I sunk to my lowest depths.  Clutching Michelle's bag, focused on her feet, I crawled over the rocks back into the treed area. No picture taking on the return trip.)
Definitely Works the Walk!!!   Eve Lake

I made it! And the suffering was worth it!!  Eve Lake is a beautiful spot - crystal clear water, bordered by rocks, flowers and those lovely cone shaped firs; nestled on the mountain top.  Mountain ranges that I had viewed the day before from the summit as "way up there" were now across from us.  We picnicked, sketched, photographed and explored; it was with sadness that we returned to the trail and headed home. Our time here had gone way too fast!!

The hike to Eve Lake was definitely a high point for me on our trip, it was something I don't have an opportunity to do here on the coast.  And I was pleased with my own personal triumph over the 'height thing'.
Our merry group, at Eve Lake

Our days on the mountain drifted by very quickly: each day we discovered new places; talked and laughed as we shared our thoughts and stories; painted and chatted to visitors to the park as we worked in our studio; and of course feasted on the spoils in our treasure chest!!

Our trip is over but now the work begins.  Each of us will be producing 3 pieces of work to be part of a show to commemorate the 100th Anniversary of Mount Revelstoke National Park and the Park System as a whole.  The show will open in Revelstoke Nov. 7 at the Revelstoke Arts Gallery running til Nov. 30 and then travel for a year to other galleries around the province.  I will keep you posted on my entries and the show locations.
Tried out an Accordion Journal for the trip - Cover is painted but still the back to finish.

 Balsam Lake and the flowers are featured on the book cover 

 The trip was a great experience for me but I want to thank Jackie, with the  Revelstoke Visual Arts Society and Nina, from Parks Canada for their work in putting this residency together.  If you get a chance to apply for a Artist Residency I highly recommend it.
Special Note: Caroline Scagel is from Mayne Island, one of the Gulf Islands.  Sorry for the misspelling Caroline.

Combat Canvas Update:
Yes tomorrow is the day!!  I have been busy practicing and I think I am ready to go.

 "Canvas Combat", Saturday August 23 - 45 minutes to Paint!! 
Good Day Sunshine Cafe, 2950 King George Blvd, Surrey
 I will be part of the second session 4-5pm.

Come and watch and don't forget to vote!  
Winners are chosen by popular vote.
Have a great day,
Special Update:  To see the pictures that I created for the show from my residency see my 4 October Posts starting with this One.

Aug 18, 2014

Horseflies 1, Wendy 4, Mountain - The Clear Winner!!

Horseflies leave a memorable bite!

Large inflammation - the size of a fist

Pain - like a bruise that is constantly pressured

What happened to the simple itch of a mosquito??

I am home from the Hills again!!  

Meadow gardens everywhere, with dynamite views of mountains as a backdrop!  Don't you just love those trees??

Yes, the Residency was GREAT!  Well expect for the bite which now a week later still looks bad but fortunately no longer hurts.

 Caroline Scagel, Encaustics and Silk  painter from Mayne Island. Valerie Rogers, Wildlife artist from Salmon Arm and Myself

We started out Friday morning at 9, meeting each other for the first time. We instantly clicked!!  Quite a relieve when you figure we were going to spend 4 days together in a 1 room cabin!!

We were excited, we rushed up the mountain, found the cabin and settled in.  Then we went exploring.

The first place we explored was our food cooler!!  Well, we didn't bring food, it was to come up each day in coolers and who knows what that can be like.  Well, cadoodles to Modern Bakery in Revelstoke.  Opening that cooler was like opening a treasure chest.  There was wraps, salads, cookies, squares, drinks of varies sorts and lots of them.  Our meals were definitely a delight but we were sure going to be hiking lots to burn off those calories!!
Balsam Lake, our home for the Residency

The meadows were bursting with flowers of every colour! Just 2 -3 short weeks, then they are gone!!
Balsam Lake was everything it was billed as - an alpine meadows in full bloom.  The sub alpine firs, like tall thin cones framing everything.  It was overwhelming -  everywhere you looked was a picture! We walked, we talked, we photographed and we laughed! Then headed back to our treasure chest.
The Cabin
The cabin, our mountain top home, was everything it was billed as too - rustic, no water, power, or electricity.  Of course no wifi but if you walked a kilometer up the trail and stood in a certain spot you could get your phone to work!!  The outhouse wasn't far and pretty clean.  And the moonlight!  At 4 in the morning, the full moon and the starry skies were certainly much brighter than what we have here in the 'burbs' of Vancouver.  The cabin was cool in the day and held some heat at night. It was bug-free and the bunks were comfortable.  What more could you ask?

Inside - no way I could sleep on top!!  Thanks Caroline for offering.

We had our trials figuring things out.  Turns out, all our husbands do the propane stoves and lights!!  Good thing there were lots of matches.  Who knew the propane lights had a secret shut off valve behind the bunk-bed!!

Our first day went like a blink of an eye.  When the tourist left and we had the park to ourselves, it was like magic.  The birds came out, the air settled and there was a feeling of calm.  We climbed the summit trail to  watch the sunset and we felt like kings!!

Me with my support team, who waited below.  Thanks Steve and Rusty for making the trek there with me. 
Next installment in a few days, I have to catch my breath! 

Meanwhile I am preparing for my next  Art adventure "Canvas Combat", Saturday August 23 - 45 minutes to Paint!! 

 I will be part of the second session 4-5pm.  Come and watch and don't forget to vote!  
Winners are chosen by popular vote.  
Good Day Sunshine Cafe, 2950 King George Blvd, Surrey
Have a great day and enjoy the summer, it is disappearing fast,