The Love that Surrounds Me 1 & 2. Diptych 36" x 36" ea

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Pemberton Festival

Thanks to the media's mega coverage of all that went wrong with this event, I'm sure we're all a little "Pemberton-ed Out", but this is MY little story...

[I have quite a few fotos and a few videos to show you, so let me know if you had trouble viewing this blog.]

I was invited to go at the last minute for the last day (Sunday). When I was young, I didn't go to a lot of concerts and never to a biggie outdoor one, so how could I say no?

The photo above is how is how I've always seen the Pemberton/Whistler area in summer... beautiful, green, pristine...

I really had no idea what to expect but I certainly didn't expect this:

(yikes! a garbage mine field - some plates still full of left over food which left for some squishy steps if you weren't looking.)
Yup... it was a mess and yup, the traffic was crazy. We all heard a lot about it on the radio and TV, but that is ALL I am going to say about the negative stuff. I have to give the organizers kudos for putting together this HUGE event for the first time...

My friend and I were REALLY there to see Cold Play and the rest of the bands were a bonus. Sunday started off with Vampire Weekend - they were fun, trendy and had some great tunes. [I am not a very articulate music critic, just basic and to the point!]

After Vampire Weekend, N.E.R.D. was up. As one concert ended and the next began, we had a chance to move further to the front to wait for Cold Play. The crowd grew restless as N.E.R.D. showing up became less of a possibility. It was kind of neat as the crowd spontaneously started to sing "O Canada" as we waited [and waited and waited].

N.E.R.D. finally came on minus 2 band members - uhh... great excuse guys: "we were stuck in traffic". How about preparation and wouldn't they be travelling together? Whatever...
This was a totally new experience for me, especially seeing as the crowd was oh...maybe between 18-26 years of age and my friend and I are in our 40s... clearly strange fish in this pond! This band really got the energy of the crowd moving - amazing how a small group can have such control over the masses. In my naivety (being so close to the front), I was all of the sudden in the midst of "slam dancing" and "surfing". Wow! I had 3 guys land on my head and got bounced around like a rag doll!

I was actually having a blast in this new youthful experience!
Death Cab for Cutie was up next and at least I knew a bit of their music. They were more on the mellow side, a little break between the rappers.

Here's a little clip of Jay Z. It's really tough to take a proper video when you're being shoved and bounced in every direction... but you'll get the idea.

All in all though, I've gotta say that it was a good crowd... everybody was truly enjoying themselves.

Ok... so now my friend decides that he's gotta do one for the "bucket list" and try to crowd surf. Oh heck, why not! All the college kids were totally egging him on and before I knew it, he was on his way... RIGHT to the front...

Lost him... but now Cold Play was next and I was corralled closer to the front of the oxygen deprived stage area. It's tough to get some air when you're so short!
Here a shot of Cold Play's arrival on stage:

AND... a wee clip of them starting out...

I finally found my frient by the bus shuttle line up, and by that time, the line up was unreal and the traffic, crazy. We decided to walk back to the airport (like a lot of other people) where the car was parked. I just had to get a snap of these trees... don't really know why... maybe I liked the fence behind them.

Made it back to the car eventually and the next day, took the long way home through Mount Currie and the back roads of Lillooet Lake through to Harrison. A little dusty, but GORGEOUS!

Anyway... there's always lots of stories and I'm not much of a writer. I'm learning to write and express myself through blogging - a great exercise so far!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Meeting on Kits Beach

I Meet Up with an Italian group in Vancouver once or twice a month to keep up with speaking Italian. We're a chatty group of people that love panninis and espresso. Usually we meet at Cafe Rustico on Main Street, but this time we did something a little different... Kitsilano Beach. Seeing as I don't live by the ocean and love it so much, this a meeting that I was definitley going to attend!

It was a perfect evening when arrived yesterday. Just look at that sky!

I couldn't find 'il groupo' in the place we were supposed to meet, so I kept walking up to Starbucks on Cornwall to get a latte and sit by the water. All was ok as I was so totally in the moment!

This is what I like about the city... so many people gathering by the ocean and sand... outdoors, playing sports, visiting, eating, drinking... enjoying themselves.

I finished my coffee and continued my walk around what used to be my beach neighbourhood about 10 years ago.

As I'm walking along I see a bunch of people sitting/lying on blankets on the grass under a big tree. They were playing guitars and singing and having a great time...

HEY... wait a minute! That's my group... singing Italian songs! I sat down and joined them - some new faces - always nice. I got so involved that I forgot to take a picture of all of us. We sang some more, talked about art, music, Italy, food, wine, travelling, we all have a lot in common. We are meeting again soon to continue this spectacular evening - more singing, guitars and possibly a few more 'refreshments'! Then I MUST remember to get a shot of us all.

As we said our 'ciaos' and 'arrivadercis' we soaked in the last of the sun's rays of the evening and headed home...

...can't wait till next time...

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Follow up, Recap and Updates in a Photo diary...


In my very first blog *"How Long Does it Take to Paint a Painting" [June 8, 2008], I mentioned how I'm struggling with my giant (96"x48") tree painting. As promised, I've uploaded a snap shot on how it has been progressing.

I feel a certain sense of satisfaction of how it has evolved these last few weeks, but I still need to work on the water area...

[from "Whistler Art and Adventure" June 30, 2008]

I finally received the rafting photos in the mail from when my girlfriend, her son and I were in Whistler. After voraciously ripping the envelope open and looking at them, it got me all jazzed up to do it again!

Update 1:

I set my mind to making some small (6"x4") samples to send send out to galleries ["Painting Samples" July 2, 2008]. Below is a photo of the sample - I made 11 of them, all the same-ish and

enclosed them in this folder. I also included my CV, artist's statement, personal statement, business card and pricing list.

I've sent out three packages so far and have a few more in mind that I will address shortly.

Update 2:
The Art in the Park event happened this Saturday in Abbotsford. It was a lot of fun meeting new people and seeing their work. I'm back at it again on Saturday, July 26.

These two photos are the of the nice shady space I had. I have a tent, but really didn't feel like setting it up! The shade looked just fine and what a gorgeous day too!

Last Update:

A few friends and I (and their dogs, of course!) went on a hike up past Chilliwack Lake. We hiked up to Lindemann Lake:

the colours of blues and greens in the lake were spectacular!

AND... of course, more tree photos! I had fun taking this shot at an angle... looks kind of weird!

Here's the "normal shot" of the above photo...

This is the last leg of the hike up to Greendrop Lake.
All together, the hike was just over 10k. We all had a great time and have a few aches and pains, but it was all WELL worth the enjoyment and inspiration of the day!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Art in the Park

Mill Lake in Abbotsford is having Art in the Park. I'll be displaying a variety of my paintings such as the ones below: (as well as some tree paintings that I've been working on recently)

Invitation details:

Event: Art in the Park

When: Saturday, July 12 at 12:00pm
Where: Mill Lake Park

To see more details and RSVP (if you'd like to), follow the link below:


(there is a map on this link)

If you're unable to drop by on the 12th, there will be another Art in the Park in the same location on Saturday, July 26 from noon to 4pm where I'll be participating as well.

It's a beautiful walk around the lake with your kids, your sweetie and/or your dog!

See you there!

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Studio Spaces

When I lived on Vancouver Island (Nanoose Bay) a few years ago, I had a pretty cool art studio. It was large, above a two-car garage with a work shop below. The room was actually built as a suite with a bathroom and a kitchenette, so it was perfect for working and teaching. There was even room for my piano.

The house was built in a typical 70s style so the ceiling had one slanted angle to it. On this angle, I had lots of fun painting my favourite quotes directly on the ceiling as I could easily reach it without too much trouble.

As the slanted ceiling filled up with more and more of the sayings of others, I started on the side walls and other areas with thoughts and ideas that moved me.

I just TOTALLY loved this one!

The room started taking on a life that drew me into it.

Now I rent a studio space in Abbotsford and have written quotes on kraft paper that I have taped on the wall. It's not quite the same experience of the "freedom of the moment", but it's always fun to let loose with the brush and squeezing paint straight from the tube.

The words of others are inspirational, we need to take them in and apply them to our lives while carving paths of our own.
What are some of your favourite quotes? Do you save them or paste them on your bathroom mirror?

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Painting Samples

After browsing through Whistler art galleries and giving out my info and photo brochures, I found that trying to explain what it is that I exactly do, can produce blank looks on some people's faces. I started thinking that I need better verbal skills, and also a better visual description.
Idea: I am going to make mini tile size samples of my work.

Because my work is so textured, it's difficult for me to take properly detailed photos, so this seems like a good alternative in visual explanation... hopefully alleviating some of the confusion that the verbal explanation can leave!
Now that I've had a great cup of coffee,
"Coffee Break" 12x12 $295
I'm going down to my workshop to cut up some 4"x6" pieces of the wood I use to work on. Then... off to my studio to get started on the next steps!