Dog

Dog

Friday, 20 July 2018

Blog 29

After the last two blogs about “Creating Art with a Group” that were a collaboration with fellow artist Anne Warburton, I will continue with my Creativity Challenge for the rest of July.

Since July 2, I have created 15 minute art projects that I posted on my Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/KerstinPetersPaintings from Monday to Friday. I hope they have inspired you to follow along or to pick up your own projects. The main goal is to have fun in the process and hopefully to learn something new along the way.

I am very passionate about sharing my art with you because I hope that it will help you to look at the world around you with a fresh eye. Has it ever happened to you that you have driven through a part of your neighbourhood and all of a sudden you see a house or a barn that you never noticed before? Or maybe you reach a spot on your way and you wonder how you cannot recall your way? Our world is so full of sensations and we have so many things on our mind that we often do not really pay attention to our environment.

I would like to challenge you to have a fresh look around. If you have certain art materials, try a new technique, a new pattern. Challenge yourself to get out of your comfort zone.

foam sheet mosaic that took much longer than expected
Creating these 15 minute projects have been out of my comfort zone at times, especially since I have tried new materials or a new technique. I always was nervous that I would not be able to live up to your expectations of me as an artist. However, if I try something new, I also have to practice to find out how to get the most of the material or how to apply a certain technique properly. I had to remind myself of my own advice: The important part is the process and having fun. Only when you try different things can you find out what works for you and what doesn’t.

If you would like to see the 15 minute projects of the past three weeks please go to my Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/KerstinPetersPaintings.

Here are some of the other artworks that I created during the last two weeks:




I did a lot of sketching while I spent a week at the cottage. Some of the sketches turned out to my satisfaction, while others were too ambitious but will still give me enough information to help me remember a certain moment, even if the perspective or scale of elements are not correct. Then there were those where I tried to draw without looking at my sketchbook that were at least good for some hearty laughs.



I also took my sketchbook to the theatre again. It was so dark that I had to sketch without really seeing what I was doing.


still untitled, acrylic, 10" x 10"

At the cottage, I also painted a peony that I had seen at the Ottawa Ornamental Gardens a couple of weeks earlier. I was lucky to be able to rely on a good photograph of the beautiful flower.


"The Old Shed", acrylic, 8" x 10"

On Wednesday, I finally went painting again with some of my painting buddies. We spent the morning at the Cumberland Heritage Village Museum where I painted an old shed that nature is slowly taking over.

I would love to see some of your projects. You can either send me a photo by email to kpeters@domingoinformatics.ca or post a photo on my Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/KerstinPetersPaintings. Please do not hesitate to ask for advice if you are stuck. I will do my best to help you.



Friday, 13 July 2018

Creating Art with a Group - Part 2



Blog 28


A couple of weeks ago, I had an interesting talk with my artist friend Anne Warburton, a versatile fibre artist from Navan, about “Creating Art with a Group”. In this second part, we talk about finding locations, the challenges of creating in a group, and about collaborating on a joint piece of art.

Question 4) Where do you meet - are there any challenges with finding locations?

In the summer, weather is a factor because we don’t want to be out in the rain or out during a thunderstorm. If you need an indoor space, cost is often an issue. We are lucky in one of the smaller groups, as we go to each other’s homes, and have enough space in a couple of basements or sometimes we use a carport. Many indoor places do not want to rent space to painters, because they are afraid that the floors will be stained. And the price can sometimes be prohibitive too.
Some groups, like the Ottawa Urban Sketchers, seek out locations to go to, with permission of course, or get invited to events. For example, we were at Lansdowne Park for the curling trials a couple of years back, and more recently, we attended a dress rehearsal with the the Ottawa Pops Orchestra at Centrepointe Theatre. Ottawa does have some beautiful outdoor spaces and parks that are perfect for sketching and painting. This coloured pencil image was sketched at the Rockcliffe Park Pavillion.

A great source to find places to rent is SpaceFinder https://ottawa.spacefinder.org/. SpaceFinder is a free matchmaking tool for people renting out their space to artists and artists looking for a creative space.

Question 5) What are some disadvantages of creating with a group? Are you afraid to lose your own creativity when you participate in group activities too often?

It is easy to mimic someone else’s style when learning a new technique or working with new materials. That is a risk at first during the learning curve, but we do fall back to our own style, and adapting to incorporate the new technique.

Group dynamics are very important. We tend to take on roles such as organizer, doer, planner etc. We need to be open to what others want to accomplish in each group so that everyone feels their own needs are being met, and also ensure that our own goals align with that of the group.

Question 6) Have you collaborated with other artists to jointly create a piece of art?

Yes, we’re just finishing up a piece for a show next year. This was the first time I have been involved in a joint creation, and I’m pleased with how it went. It’s very important that everyone agree in advance on all the parameters, yet be flexible enough to make changes during the creative process. There were four of us and we have created together in the past as a group, so each of us was able to fall into the roles that we usually play in planning and organizing our creative get-togethers. For anyone who does want to create a piece jointly with others it’s important that all the tasks be identified and assigned, so that one person doesn’t feel burdened with more, another doesn’t feel listened to, etc.




Both Anne and I answered the same questions. To read my answers to the same questions please go to Anne’s blog at https://annewarburton.blogspot.com/ or you can access her blog through her website https://www.needleartsonpaper.com/.  If you missed the first part of our discussion, please scroll back to last week’s post.


Anne and I were both very excited about working together and had a lovely chat. However, it was quite out of our comfort zone to record the session. It was even harder to watch and edit the video afterwards. It is not perfect, but it shows us in an authentic way. I am sure we will get better with time. You will be able to see the clip "Challenges with Finding Locations" at https://youtu.be/sl9J_Lkd4GI.

 
What about you? Have you ever created art with a group? We would love to hear about your experiences.


Friday, 6 July 2018

Creating Art with a Group - Part 1




Blog 27


A couple of weeks ago, I had an interesting talk with my artist friend Anne Warburton about “Creating Art with a Group”. Anne is a versatile fibre artist. Her passion is stitching on paper and fabric, and incorporating paint, photographs, metals or recycled materials. A love of colour and travel inspires much of her work. She has a love of learning, and continues to develop her art through experimentation and courses, and is also trained in the expressive arts therapies. She is an active member of several arts associations including Arteast and the Out of the Box Fibre Artists, and is Chair of the annual Navan spring Fine Art Exhibition & Sale.
In the discussion below, Anne talks about her experiences and perspectives on the topic of Creating Art with a Group. To see my answers to the same questions please go to Anne’s blog at https://annewarburton.blogspot.com/ or you can access her blog through her website https://www.needleartsonpaper.com/.





1) Anne, Why do you create art with a group? What do you get out of creating with others?

I have learned so much when creating with others, and have grown as an artist due in part to such groups. Valuable tips, resources and new ideas are just a few of the benefits. I’m currently active in three groups: an open studio, sketching group, and fibre art playdates.

For example with the Ottawa Urban Sketchers, there are artists of all levels, it is great practice and you get inspired by each other, especially if you don’t sketch on a regular basis. When you start out, it is often very uncomfortable to have other people looking over your shoulder and it’s comforting to have other artists sketching or painting next to you, even though the public is very interested and supportive. They are not critiquing what you are doing but are very interested.

There is an amazing energy in creating with a group. You just feed from each other. You get excited again and want to continue creating when you get home.

2) What types of groups do you work with? How did you find these groups? Do you have a group you meet with regularly?

I have worked with art organizations like Arteast and the Out of the Box Fibre Artists, the Ottawa Urban Sketchers, gone to workshops and classes, shared studio time, gone out with plein air groups.

With a group of fibre artists as well as through the Out of the Box Fibre Artists, we get together regularly every month or so for “play dates”. We spend a day learning how to use a new material or technique by playing and experimenting with the material, and the results can be just fascinating. We can’t always predict the results, which is part of the anticipation and surprise. Even the mistakes we make while learning are extremely valuable. We had one experience where only one of five in our group was successful with the technique we were learning, and we did not know why she had success. It took much more research but we really did learn more and just how much practice some techniques can take.

Part of the fun too is finding finding materials we need in local second hand stores, and some materials we didn’t know we needed but just had to have. So generally, it is not just a learning day but a whole event.

This picture was from a get together where we were experimenting with bleach dyeing. The original of this piece of clothing was black, and by tying up parts and bleaching, a beautiful brown was the result, with interesting circles left in black.


I have found these groups by joining local visuals arts and fibre arts organizations, then getting together with friends made through these groups where we have like-minded goals. We are lucky that Ottawa has many such opportunities through organized groups and through several shops.

3) Do you think it is helping with your success as an artist?

Definitely. You get good constructive feedback from the other artists of the group, and are exposed to new ideas that you can consider for your own work, learn about resources, upcoming shows, and so much more. It’s amazing to see how everyone interprets a scene or technique differently. You find support, get inspired and excited again in a way that you want to continue creating when you get home.

While I have posted Anne’s answers, I hope you will be interested in reading my answers to the same questions in her blog at https://annewarburton.blogspot.com/. Anne’s website is https://www.needleartsonpaper.com/.

If you would like, you can also watch the clip “Playdates with Fibre Artists”of our discussion at 
https://youtu.be/RxBtQBYQG-8 and the clip “Ottawa Sketching Group” at 

In next week’s blog on Creating Art with a Group we will talk about finding locations, the challenges of creating in a group, and about collaborating on a joint piece of art.

If you would like to see what I created during the past week, I encourage you to follow my 15 minute art projects on my Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/KerstinPetersPaintings/.  During the month of July, I will post them from Monday to Friday. I hope they will inspire you to follow along or to practice whatever inspires you. The main goal is to have fun in the process, and hopefully learn something new along the way.


Friday, 29 June 2018

Creativity Challenge - Week 26



Blog 26

The past week was dedicated to spending time with my extended family who visited us for my daughter’s graduation events. Nevertheless, I managed to squeeze in some creative time.




On June 22, I went to a Glass Fusion Workshop at Da Artisti Studio & Gallery that was organized by Arteast for its members. It was a lot of fun to learn something new and to work with a new material. Wendy Canci, the gallery owner and a very talented glass artist, guided us through the process of creating a dish and a pendant by layering glass. I can hardly wait to see the finished products after they have been heated in a kiln to fuse the glass pieces together.





As my family already knows that I have a hard time sitting still without giving my hands something to do, they already expect me to pick up my latest project. As my two year old niece came for her first visit, I had moved all my felting equipment away. As it is easy for an adult to prick themselves with the felting needle in a moment of inattentiveness, I did not want to take any chances with my niece. Instead, I worked on catching up with my temperature shawl that I had neglected for weeks. I am still 2.5 weeks behind, but you can finally see more of the spring/summer colours. It is hard to believe that I am almost halfway done with my shawl. If you look carefully, you will see that I had to improvise again with some of the colours where my original ball of wool was not sufficient, which is okay because you can find a lot of colour variations in nature. 




On the day of my daughter’s garden party and prom, I managed some sketches at the hairdresser’s and during a visit to a restaurant. The one of my father-in-law was especially challenging as my father-in-law wears glasses and moved a lot. I worked on this sketch again at home. I also spent a couple of minutes sketching a couple of small Begonias from a flower bed in front of the movie theatres while waiting for my friend. The sketch was just a little exercise to fill the waiting time. However, every little sketch helps to sharpen your observational skills.



 Finally, I found some time to finish my 9” x 12” acrylic painting “Three Poppies” from my plein air outing two weeks ago. I added some extra paint on the petals of the flowers to make them stand out.




I also spent some time writing my latest newsletter. If you like my blogs and would like to receive some more information about upcoming workshops and exhibitions as well as news about my activities, I invite you to subscribe to my monthly newsletter that is published on the last Wednesday of the month. You can subscribe on the bottom of every page on my website www.KerstinPeters.ca.

Next week, you will finally be able to read the blog about my discussion with fiber artist Anne Warburton about “Creating Art with Groups”. The blog is accompanied by a couple of video clips.

For now, I wish all of you a Happy Canada Day! Enjoy the wonderful summer weather and spend some Me-time, either exploring some of the many activities that are offered or relaxing in your favourite spot.

Friday, 22 June 2018

Creativity Challenge - Week 25

Blog 25



With company at our house and working part-time, it was more difficult to set aside time to be creative. While I was watching some of the World Cup soccer games with my family, I was able to continue knitting my temperature shawl and felting flowers on my table runner. I also felted a butterfly for my Creativity & Me: Felting Butterflies & Flowers workshop on Friday, July 27 at 1pm - 3pm.

Nevertheless, I spent last Friday morning with my friend Janis painting poppies in her yard. It was my first plein air painting time since our trip to Kamouraska in September of last year. It felt so great to be outside in the warm sun, and to be able to fully concentrate on painting without distractions.


Three Poppies, acrylic, unfinished

Anne Warburton and I also continued writing and editing our blogs about “Creating Art with Groups”. We complement each other very well. It is exciting to see everything come together. The blogs will be published together with the video clips on July 6 and 13, 2018.

On June 21, I went to the Humanics Institute Sanctuary and Sculpture Park with a couple of members of the Ottawa Plein Air Adventures Group. I knew many of the members already from Arteast as well as the Urban sketchers. While most participants stayed until the afternoon, I only had time to stay until noon to create one watercolour pencil sketch of the sculpture called “Friends”, one of my favourite sculptures of the park.

If you would like to try something new, I am holding one painting and one felting workshop in July:

July 20: The Energy of Vincent van Gogh

July 27: Felting Butterflies and Flowers

Here is also the link to the Painting Party in the Humanics Institute Sculpture Park on July 15, 2018: https://www.facebook.com/events/390719461442763/ .

For more information, please click on the links or go to my website www.KerstinPeters.ca.



In addition, I am offering a new promotion for you: if you register for 5 events at the regular rate and pay only half the price then when you register for your 6th event. There is no expiration date for this promotion. This promotion starts with my July events and is valid for both painting parties and workshops. Once you have registered for 5 events, I will send you the promotion code for the 6th event.

If you have any suggestions for materials or techniques you would like to have covered during my July projects that I will post from Monday to Friday on my business page https://www.facebook.com/KerstinPetersPaintings/ on Facebook, please send me an email to kpeters@domingoinformatics.ca.

Friday, 15 June 2018

Creativity Challenge - Week 24

Blog 24

My creative week started off on the right foot with our visit to the Ottawa Little Theatre on Friday, where we saw the immensely funny British farce “Move Over Mrs. Markham” about love, infidelity, trust, and revenge. During the play I managed to sketch a little bit despite the challenge of the fast moving actions of the actors and the many bursts of laughter.









I also drew a couple of characters from “The Loud House” for one of my “Cartooning and Drawing” courses. “The Loud House” is an American animated television series about the chaotic life of Lincoln Loud. He is the middle child and only boy in a large family of 11 children. 




This was also the last week of my “Cartooning and Comic” classes. Two groups had picked “Toothless” from “How to Train a Dragon” for their last class, while the third group chose the “Loud House Characters” I already mentioned.




After weeks of neglect, I finally continued my temperature shawl. It is exciting to see how the design unfolds now that we have reached warmer temperatures and a different colour scheme. I will post a photo next week.




On Sunday, I visited Ottawa’s Ornamental Gardens with my family. The Ornamental Gardens are situated at the Central Experimental Farm in Ottawa, Ontario. At the moment, the peonies and irises are in full bloom. There are also some amazing trees. I wish I had been able to spent the day painting, but I am happy that I did have a change to take some pictures of the breathtaking beauty. I have to go back with my painting buddies. 




While I still did not manage to paint outside, I was able to continue the tree painting that I started during my knife painting workshop a couple of weeks ago. I showed the participants the use of different kind of painting knives to bring texture and energy to a painting. As I use student grade paint during the workshop I added a layer of professional grade paint when I reworked the trees and roots. Hopefully, I will be able to show you the finished work next week.




Inspired by some beautiful pansies at an ice cream shop, I also finished a yellow one and created a pink one on my table runner.

As life’s pace is usually slower in summer, I would like to invite you to bring more creativity into your life. From Monday to Friday during the month of July, I will post 15 minute art projects on my Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/KerstinPetersPaintings/ that will hopefully inspire you to follow along or to practice whatever inspires you. Is there a technique or a medium that you always wanted to try out? If you have any suggestions, please leave a comment or send me an email to kpeters@domingoinformatics.ca.






Friday, 8 June 2018

Creativity Challenge - Week 23

Blog 23

Climax, acrylic, 10" x 10"

Last weekend, I finally made it back into my studio to paint. I finished the tulip painting that I had started at the beginning of April. It felt so good to be painting. I had hoped to paint a second time this week, as my friends and I had plans to paint at the Cumberland Heritage Village Museum, but these plans fell through due to the days of rain.



Instead I met with one of my friends for a craft morning. She was knitting and I felted a blue lupin. Later, I also continued to work on the poppies that I had started last week.



During the “Cartooning and Comics” classes, I demonstrated scenes 3 and 4 for all three groups. All but my 5 - 7 year old students were able to finish their comics this week.


At the beginning of the week, I met with my artist friend Anne Warburton to collaborate on a blog post. We were both very excited about working together and had a lovely chat. However, it was quite out of our comfort zone to record the session, but we did it anyway. It is not perfect, but it shows us in an authentic way. I am sure we will get better with time. You will be able to see the video and read the blog in a couple of weeks.


If you would like try something new, I would like to inform you about my first outdoor painting party in the beautiful environment of the Humanics Sanctuary and Sculpture Park in the idyllic Cumberland Village.The painting party is open to everyone who enjoys the peacefulness and beauty of nature to get inspired to create their own artwork; it will be a lasting memory that will bring continuous joy to their home. This is an event to connect with others, relax and have fun. I will guide the participants in creating a beautiful lotus painting. No experience is necessary. All the materials are provided for you.

The fee of $ 42.50 includes all materials and the admission to the sculpture park for the day. Parking is free. If you would like more information please contact me by email to kpeters@domingoinformatics.ca. To reserve your spot please send an e-transfer to kpeters@domingoinformatics.ca. Don't forget to send a separate email with the security answer.


Friday, 1 June 2018

Creativity Challenge - Week 22

Blog 22




With my “Cartooning and Comics” spring session nearing its end, we started our big project: the creation of our very own comics. I showed the students some Calvin and Hobbes comics, and the students of each course voted for their own favourite. Over the last couple of days, I used the comics as references to create three different comics with characters from our sessions in the poses shown in the original comics.


My students can either follow what I demonstrate in class or pick their own characters in the poses I draw. Most students were happy with my choices and followed my demonstration. While I only draw the characters, the students have to create the story by adding the setting and speech bubbles. It was wonderful to see with how much excitement they went to work. Our comics consists of four images. While I already drew the whole sequence, the students finished the first two images this week. It will be interesting to see how their stories unfold next week.




Despite my intention to go painting with some of my friends, our schedules were just not compatible this week, but I managed to felt some more flowers onto my table runner. First, I added some white and red poppies. Then, I started to felt some lilac blooms. It was not easy to create the small petals. I am not quite happy with the result. I will keep working on all three flowers.


Today is the last day to register for my Flower Felting Workshop at the beautiful Da Artisti Studio & Gallery in Cumberland Village on June 3, from 10am to 12pm. In this 2 hour course, I will be showing you how to create your own flowers with wool by felting it on a 5" x 7" felt base. The final product can be framed and displayed anywhere in your home. No prior experience is necessary, and all materials are included! Registration is limited to 8 participants, and is priced at $50+tax.
To register please go to: https://daartisti.com/lessons/


Friday, 25 May 2018

Creativity Challenge - Week 21

Blog 21




Drawing in class

Finally, I was able to make more time for art. For my Cartooning and Comics classes, I drew the main characters of the movie “Captain Underpants” as well as Bendy from the video game “Bendy and the Ink Machine”, a survival horror video game as I discovered when I did some research. I often wonder how these young kids know about so many villains. Whether it is Darth Vader, Deadpool, the Joker, or Bendy, I am surprised when I read about the characters and the games and movies featuring them. They seem definitely more violent than what I read and watched as a kid.


Drawings as Preparation

Drawing in class
Or on second thought, perhaps they are not so different. When I think back to Grimm’s Fairy tales or Wilhelm Busch’s stories that my parents read to me even at a young age, they also contained a lot of violence, even though we did not realize it, because we concentrated on the “Happily ever after” ending of the heroine or hero. Without consciously noticing it, the tales taught us about dangers and morals, and how to behave to be safe and to be polite.

As video games and movies are much more available to children of all ages and let the story of books come to life on the screen, let’s hope that these fictional characters will also help kids to differentiate between good and bad. We, the parents, guardians and instructors play a big role to make sure that the children see the consequences of violent behaviour and the value of taking positive actions in real life.

I am not a big fan of violent movies and have never played a video game. I prefer to see movies or read books that are funny or romantic, or documentaries that show happy relationships between creatures and the beauty and fascination of nature.


On the weekend, during a bike ride with my son and a walk with our dog, the fields of blooming trilliums captured my eyes and inspired me to create a felted trillium flower on my table runner. I wish I could also create lilac blooms that I love so much, but they seem very difficult. Regardless, I will attempt to make one and tell you next week whether I was successful. In the worst case, I will just create another flower out of the beautiful lilac coloured wool.

If you like flowers and would like to learn how to felt them, I am happy to offer my next Flower Felting Workshop at the beautiful Da Artisti Studio & Gallery in Cumberland Village on June 3, from 10am to 12pm. In this 2 hour course, I will be showing you how to create your own flowers with wool by felting it on a 5" x 7" felt base. The final product can be framed and displayed anywhere in your home. No prior experience is necessary, and all materials are included! Registration is limited to 8 participants, and is priced at $50+tax.
To register please go to: https://daartisti.com/lessons/


Friday, 18 May 2018

Creativity Challenge - Week 20

Blog 20

When this blog is published our house will have just gone on the market. I am sure you can understand that I did not have any time to be creative. I only drew Star from the show “Star versus the Forces of Evil” for one of my drawing classes. The rest of the time, I spent decluttering and cleaning out the basement, including my studio.

It was probably good to be under pressure as I find it really hard to let go of things. As a creative person even little things can give me ideas for a future use in an artwork. Having to clean out my office to stage it for potential buyers forced me to make some tough decisions, especially because I will probably not have another studio that is as spacious in the house we will be moving into.

As much as going through the stuff was both physically and mentally exhausting, it feels good to look at my cleaned studio. As I did not clean it out as much as in the rest of the house, this is the only room in our house that I still like to be in and hopefully will still be able to create artworks and teach in the next couple of months. The rest of the house is now staged for upcoming visits, and all the personal items are removed to give the house a more neutral look. As I did not follow the advice to have our house painted in the fashionable grey tones, at least I don’t feel like I am in a dead house, although it feels static. I don’t feel like spending time in any of the rooms anymore, because I am afraid to unsettle things.

At this point, I am hoping to sell the house fast, even though it will not be easy to leave. Our house is a custom house, that I designed and for which I picked out every floor, cupboard, blind, and wall colour (except for my children’s rooms). It feels like one of my artworks, only that I had people to help me with the realization. My father is an architect and he put my vision into the plans of our house. We had to make some sacrifices during the building of the house due to financial considerations but it still looks mostly like my vision.

When I designed the house, it never occured to me that I would move before being in my old age, but now that my children are out of school and both my husband and I have long rides to work every day, we had to review our priorities.

When I started to sell my artwork, I also had a hard time of letting go. Now, I decide before I start a painting whether it will be for sale or for myself. The only exception is the one painting I pick at the end of every painting trip as a reminder of the wonderful memories.

I hope that when it is time to leave our house, I will be able to remember the wonderful memories and feel good knowing that a new family will be able to enjoy and make the house their own, the same way I hope that my artworks will bring continuous joy to their new owners.

Queen of the Night, acrylic,
8" x 7 3/4"
I wish all of you a wonderful Victoria Day weekend! Will you visit the Ottawa Tulip Festival or any local park or forest to see nature’s beauty? Or will you be glued to the television to watch the royal wedding with all of the beautifully dressed people? If this long weekend is your start for the cottage or camping season, I hope that you will create wonderful memories.

Friday, 11 May 2018

Creativity Challenge - Week 19

my lotus flower from the retreat

Blog 19

It is time for my new blog. I had a very busy week, but still was able to carve out many moments of creativity.

It all started with my “Painting with a Palette Knife” workshop on Friday. The two participants had a great time and were quite successful in using the knife to create texture.

all three images are unfinished, mine is the one on the left

In the evening, I went to the Ottawa Little Theatre, where I saw “Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the Jersey Lily”. As most of the times I am at the theatre, I enjoy sketching while watching the performance. Since I started sketching at the theatre, it helps me to remember the plays we have seen. It is almost like creating cue cards.



On Saturday, I went to a fabulous Mayan Bola Workshop at Hikano Yoga Studio in Cumberland. Not only did I learn a lot about angels, but we also made our own spiritual necklace with a pendant that produces a soft calming sound to remind us of our angels.


The “Yoga & Art Retreat” that Jackie Leduc and I hosted at Hikano Yoga Studio was a big success. After Jackie created a calming mood during a morning of yoga and meditation, the participants went for a short walk, enjoyed Jackie’s delicious and healthy lunch, and were very excited to create their lotus painting. The lotus is a flower full of symbolism; it is associated with eternity, purity and peace, self-awareness, love and compassion, the overcoming of suffering and spiritual development. It also symbolizes beauty, fertility, prosperity, and eternity, and it is perfect subject for a spring retreat when nature awakens in an explosive way that surprises me every year. After a long-lasting dormancy suddenly everything is full of colour: a painter’s dream. I hope I will have time to paint outside soon.


At the beginning of the week, I created the three drawings for my three “Cartooning and Comics” classes. While Tomato Head from the video came Fortnite was fun, and Darth Vader interesting to draw, I had a hard time with Wither from Minecraft. I was dreading the drawing as I do not like the square shapes and difficult perspective of the character. This was definitely out of my comfort zone. Needless to say that I had a lot of trouble with the drawing. It is so much easier to draw something that you enjoy, but on the other hand it was a good challenge.


For a nice relaxing finish, I will spend some time working on my temperature shawl. I had put it aside for the last couple of weeks, and I am excited to see how nature’s design will look.

If you are still looking for a Mother’s Day gift, some of my still life paintings that are on sale until Sunday are also some nice flower paintings that will provide joy for a long time.

I wish all of you who have two- or four-legged kids a Happy Mother’s Day! If the weather is nice, head out and enjoy nature. If you live in the Ottawa area, the Tulip Festival that starts today will surely thrill you and might inspire you to create art or update a flower bed in your garden.