Posts Tagged ‘Acrylics’

Pathwords: Bon Courage

November 28, 2014

bon courage 001

As a bilingual Anglophone in Quebec, there are words I use in either language that just don’t translate in the same spirit or intention. It isn’t unusual, therefore, for us to drop a French word or term in the middle of an English conversation, knowing the other person will catch the meaning immediately. “Bon Courage” is one of those words. I’ll use it when wishing good for someone going through an ordeal – an exam, a move, a confrontation, a medical procedure, even a bereavement. It’s more than luck, since it isn’t luck that will get you through the ordeal but your own inner reserves of courage, heart, stamina, and the work you have put into it. And when it is said to me, I go off feeling encouraged , knowing I have friends at my back, sending me good vibes.


Pathwords – Iktsuarpok

November 14, 2014


pathwords2 001


In this new bookart, I’m collecting interesting words from other languages to adopt as my own. Perhaps not to drop into casual conversations; that might appear a bit affected. But the English language suffers from not having an equivalent word for many things, particularly, I have found, words that describe our soul. Words shape our selves, our souls. They make us see and feel things in different ways. They connect us to other people by sharing parts of ourselves, if only by saying “I know that feeling!”

Ikstuarpok is an Inuit work meaning “to keep looking outside to see if someone is coming”.  I know that feeling too well. It drives me crazy. Every five minutes I’m looking out the window to see if a friend has arrived in my driveway yet, or down the street, if I know their car. Sometimes, it’s with restless anticipation, looking forward to an evening with friends.  Sometimes, as in a service call, it’s with annoyance. An entire day can be wasted in restless waiting, no matter how busy I keep myself, or how much I accomplish while waiting. My eye constantly drifts over to the window, every sound grabs my attention.

And a few times, it has been with crushing fear. Which I imagine would  be the case for the Inuit waiting for a loved one to return home on the frozen tundra, a blizzard, and whatever other dangers loom in their land. The horrible feeling that something has gone wrong. It’s a universal feeling,


November 12, 2014


pathword1 001


I’ve started a new bookart. It’s smaller than my last ones – 11” x 9”, opening to 11″ x 18″ on double spreads. I don’t know yet if this is the opening page, but it is the first one I’ve finished. Not that I ever  “finish”. I tend to like an unfinished look, which tends to go more with the mixed media collage techniques I use. Here I have used paint, magazine cut outs, paint skin, and hand painted unryhu papers.

Ile de la Visitation, Ahuntsic

August 18, 2014



The water was still high in June to get a good flume, though there is already a good channel where the water rushes through the abandoned millworks. Only the small night heron was dining when I arrived. By lunchtime, the tables were full, and it would have been a much livelier scene if I hadn’t left my painting to join the bistro patrons.

Wet-on-wet in wet Plein Air

June 3, 2014



The adventures of Plein Air.  They said the rain would hold off til the afternoon. They lied. This is as far as I got when the rain came down in buckets and I was hustling my gear away under my sun (?) umbrella and scurried off, hopping over muddy potholes to my car far away. Not very elegant.

       But before that, even as I set up on this lovely sunny morning,  when only a few of us showed up (the others are smart enough to know that weather news is lies…) I had a suspicion about this lovely day …. The mosquitoes were going crazy. The light was playing weird tricks on me. Then this Ginormous soft drink truck parks in front of me.  Pardon, Madame. Right.  I could still see enough of this weird place to throw some paint on. Though it looks like I picked up the staccato rhythm of the stone masons who set up their gear and started drilling out the old mortar.  Pardon, Madame. O. K ..

So I killed some time, working very wet-in-wet on Aquarius II paper (gessoed on the back). The rain drove everybody away. but alas, me too.  Now the question – do I try to repair this? Or keep it as a souvenir of my My Great Adventure Story of the Week?

Plein Air – Coteau du Lac

July 25, 2012

We were about 20 artists yesterday in a heritage park west of Montreal. The rapids were the main attraction, herons posing for us the entire day. But I was strangely caught by the view on the other side. This house, although new, evoked something old, a feeling of deja vu, a distant memory. As I painted it, I couldn’t shake the feeling. Someone said it made her think of Lyonel Feininger, an Expressionist of the Bauhaus movement. I’d seen his collection at the museum earlier this year and bought the book. I just looked through it, and tho I don’t see the style here, there is a feeling that it was a painting of the same era. Odd.