´The Eyes of the Storm’ ‘La vue de Dorian du Pont de la Confédération ’ Aquarelle 13cmx 9 cm

This watercolour was painted today, a week after the eye of Dorian passed over Kings County in Prince Edward Island, Canada. I can’t imagine how powerful a category 5 hurricane could be. Those poor climate refugees in the Bahamas!

Living in an economically and technologically advanced country, we knew it was coming as it inched to us. We knew that in Kings county, the winds would be the most damaging. We knew power would be out. What is incomprehensible is that the power is not yet fully restored in Kings county. We are looking at 10 days without service, if we get lucky this weekend. The Canadian Armed forces were not solicited. This county is littered with power lines entangled in trees toppled by Dorian, downed trees block roads. There is no internet, no phone nor was there cell phone service for 48 hours in this remote part of PEI. I can’t imagine how Premier Denis King and Maritime Electric would have managed one fatality let alone the thousands The Bahamas are dealing with . But then they accepted outside help.

Je suis très déçue avec l’indépendance des gens élus … j’ai peu de pouvoir. Je ne suis pas an ´Islander’, pas une résidente permanente avec un droit de vote. Je m’exprime avec mes aquarelles et j’interpelle ceux qui me lit, j’ai envoyé un courriel au député de ma circonscription…sans réponse. Maritime Electric nous informe aux 30 mins des nombres sans hydro….mais n’offre aucune estimée quand le retour se fera. Heureusement je connais des gens généreux qui ont des services. J’étais chanceuse de passer la semaine à la capitale!

´The Eyes of the Storm’ ‘La vue de Dorian du Pont de la Confédération ’

Aquarelle 13cmx 9 cm

$70

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Helen Peters and The Straw Hat/ Chapeau de Paille

This painting hung unremarked for the entire market season, at Cardigan’s Farmers’ Market , beginning Father’s Day weekend. We are now winding down the crafts for another season.

Cette aquarelle me pose toujours des questions et me fait réfléchir  quand je la voit. Quand je leur demande, la majorité croit que le personnage est un homme. Lorsque j’appliquais la peinture , j’avais une femme en tête. Elle etait une amie de la chorale. Sa vie était dure. Pour ceux en service et pour ceux qui travaillaient les champs pour la récolte, entre autre, la vie est difficile.

Helen Peters was in my mind when I painted this. She was a dear friend who died  many years ago. But I remember her and her courage. Today was her birthday. She accepted illness and difficulties with dignity, grace… I admired her. But for all others, this androgenous figure is merely a receptacle for a straw hat, much needed in the heat of the summers of 2018, 2019.

Helen était originaire de Monserrat. J’ai appris beaucoup de son pays natale d’elle. J’ai suivi les effets dévastatrices de l’éruption volcanique des Collines de Soufrière en 1995. Après presque 25 ans, des zones d’exclusion existent encore. Pendant des années son secteur n’était pas habitable. L’ impact des désastres naturels semble pire dans des pays moins favorisé que le Canada.

Seeing the images of the Bahamas which Dorian has devastated, takes me back to the years required to rebuild Monserrat. The immediate suffering is colossal, but the months and years to resume a basic life are unpredictable. These people need so much.

I pledge to donate 50% of the cost of this painting to the Bahamian relief effort, should if be bought by Thanksgiving. It is what Helen would have done. Out of the little that she had, she always contributed when disaster struck.

I challenge other artists to feature one of their paintings. Let’s make this a creative fund -raiser.

Qu’en pensez-vous de l’idée de contribuer un peu d’Art original à la cause des Bahamas?

 

 

Arches cp, 140 lbs

Framed 8×12

$200 Cdn

 

 

 

 

 

August Blooms/Fleur d’août

Ah, the lilies have arrived! Showy yet strong, the gardens are now dominated by these perennials. Soon the dahlias, glads and then the sedums will put on their display. What might not be obvious is the signal of the last part of summer that these blooms bring.

L’été est une saison tant anticipée mais rapidement passée. Les fleurs, même avec leurs couleurs et variétés, peuvent servir comme chronomètre du passage des jours d’été. On est maintenant la la saison des lis. Les chaleurs d’août vont bientôt céder la place aux soirées un peu frais.

Time is bringing us back to shorter, cooler days. Now let us grab each day to appreciate its marvels and linger under starry nights with glimpses of shooting stars. Don’t let us miss this opportunity to engrave memories of summer 2019 – before the realities and worries of life are joined by the inevitable political/ election rhetoric.

´Showy Lily’

Arches cp 140lb

10″x14″ (25 x36 cm)

$150

Cardigan Farmers Market

The season is drawing to a close. How fortunate I am to have been a participant at our delightful Farmers Market these past 6 years, and on so many levels. The first year, I was selling my watercolours, I was adjacent to Breadworks artisanal bakery. I had 8 framed paintings, if I remember, and a few cards . I sold 3…and was thrilled! Mind you a lot more of me travelled back after all the delicious bread! I began this season with 100 cards and some 30 framed paintings and over 50 unframed paintings. Sales were slower than last year but my role is now much expanded at the market which compensates!

Avec les années, j’ai accepté de représenter les artisans, d’aller en chercher de nouveaux artisans locaux pour diversifier les produits offerts. Cette année une vingtaine ont choisi de me consigner leurs produits: savon, objets cousus, mitaines tricotées en laine, aimants avec motifs maritimes, verres embossés, photos de port local, bijoux fait de pierres et boucles d’oreilles d’ ailles de papillons, art ( reproductions d’encre et mes aquarelles originaux) tapis cirés, livres d’enfants et de poésie , et des oiseaux et bols taillés en bois.

Our artists provide variety in content and in price range, with soap items for $3 to my framed paintings up to $250! The array includes all the colours of the rainbow and sizes from 2″x3″ to 3’x5′. The diversity seeks to respond to the differing tastes of our customers. Make no mistake, this is no flea market. We have quality items to offer! But that which sets us apart is our venue…Cardigan’s old CN station. As we breathe new life into this wooden structure, we are ever mindful of preserving the heritage with which we are entrusted.

Nous sommes fier d’offrir une variété d’objets faits localement dans un espace unique. Plusieurs parlent au moins deux langues, facilitant l’expérience de nos clients. Nous offrons aussi à Cardigan, où on est situé, une activité qui attire les visiteurs avec des bénéfices pour tout le village. Nous sommes une organisation à but non- lucratif , dirigé par des bénévoles. Pourquoi donner tant de temps et efforts?

Each can respond to why they are involved in this organization. I have developed my people skills . Facebook has become my friend….the market has its page where I write 2-5 posts a week., providing information to our clients and serving as a marketing tool. I have learned how to operate a cash register under pressure and to problem solve as a member of the Board. In addition , I enjoy a great venue for promoting my art. Why keep giving up summer weekends in PEI to work instead of enjoying the beach? Quite simply….people. Those who volunteer alongside of me weekly are kind people who are a joy to be with, constantly coming up with novel ideas and activities for us all. The people coming through our red wooden doors are varied. These visitors bring their life stories to us . I am happy to respond to their questions about my little corner of heaven. It is a pleasure to interact with them. I have met so many people from her, from Canada and abroad.

La photo ce soir est d’un coin de mes aquarelles…j’ai aussi 2 murs dont un a uniquement des interprétations de IPÉ. Mon évolution comme artiste se voit depuis ces 6 ans. Comme je suis reconnaissante d’avoir eu cette chance.

My pink phase is on display in one photo but I have many more, including the wall of framed watercolour PEI scenes. I have evolved in content and quantity of watercolours for sale in 6 years. I have added dozens to my group of good friends. I am thankful for this wonderful opportunity offered by Cardigan Farmers’ Market .

Why don’t you drop in before Labour Day?

Moon Musings

It was only 50 years ago, but how the world changed. Decidedly I will not opine on that.

Today at our local Farmers market I offered a watercolour of the Sap Moon at half price. A token gesture to highlight our dear satellite.The phases of the moon and its influences are but the tip of the iceberg…the impact on technology by that road trip in 1969 are immeasurable.

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Plein Air & Summer

Finally it is full painting season, with the 5 day Points East Plein Air 2019, beginning July 3. Imagine, today it was warm enough to paint without long pants!

Il faisait plus chaud et avec le grand vent, pas de moustiques! Notre groupe de 50 était à North lake PEI – demain Murray Harbour.

Tomorrow the humidity will hit in the 30’s…bathing suit in tow!

Plein Air Season/ début de la saison plein air

Finally it is the season to paint outdoors! Two weeks of sun and , dare I say, heat! The challenges of setting up, having chosen a vista to paint, include opening the easel and securing the paper, organizing paint and brushes to be at hand, and of course the water placed close by but away from feet to avoid spills. The first sessions take a bit longer than later in the season. And hopefully, the output will improve with the passing weeks!

Effectuer une aquarelle en plein air demande une adaptation aux conditions météorologiques et aux visites d’insectes! Il demeure que c’est très agréable. Avec toute une scène devant nous, il faut choisir de minimiser pour mieux accentuer le point-clé. Dans l’aquarelle du jardin, la couleur des iris attirait mon attention et je l’ai choisie comme point d’intérêt.

What attracted me to the first watercolour scene were the hammock and lighthouse. As it was being painted , my focus became distracted as other elements were developed. Happily in the end, the hammock and lighthouse were still there!

Pour l’été, je travail comme bénévole aux marché de Cardigan. J’ai une trentaine d’aquarelles encadrées et cartes d’aquarelle à vendre cette année. Quelle agréable combination- un lieu sympathique de vente et une chance d’interagir avec des centaines de gens intéressés à acheter des produits artisanales.

This is the first big weekend of tourist visitors ….May the wet forecast be off! Happy Canada Day! 🇨🇦

Another season at Cardigan’s Farmers Market/ le marché de 2019 est ouvert

We are off and running into our 8th season as a local community happening in Cardigan PEI. This is a most special Farmers Market that welcomes local people, seasonal tourists and visitors from afar. On opening day last Saturday, we had a mother with two daughters. The trio were a local, a seasonal guest and a visitor from Australia.

Tous sont la bienvenue à notre marché. On a un coin d’art pour les jeunes, les produits d’une vingtaine artisans locaux, du pain frais, des œufs pondus par poules libres, des viandes extraordinaires, des fromages, des confitures, des légumes biologiques de nos fermiers et du café et repas au café Polehouse. On a un coin-salon pour jaser, prés des enfants. Mais au delà de tout ce-là, on a des bénévoles chaleureux pour vous aider! On peut vous servir en français, anglais et danois, et parfois espagnol! Des bébés naissants à des personnes de 95ans et plus ressentent la bienvenue!

This jewel of a market has been home to my watercolours and cards for 6 years. It is an honour to have been selected to be arts and crafts vendor these past 4 years. PEI affords me the opportunity to paint plein air several times a week. Many of the work I present is of PEI, with a thought that some paintings would really be happy to have a permanent home in a PEI cottage or gracing the home of one who would love to be able to stay in our Island paradise full-time!

Ce projet de ma retraite me permet d’apprendre des nouvelles fonctions en interagissant avec plein de gens diverses d’ici et d’ailleurs. C’est une excellent régime pour maintenir mon intérêt à la vie et me faire plaisir!

I can’t overstate all that Cardigan’s Farmers’ Market brings me and all the close friendships I have formed. When I began blogging, it was with trepidation that I began my retirement years. How fortunate to have stumbled into exactly what the doctor ordered for a happy next chapter !

Preparing for Cardigan’s Farmers Market/ Préparations pour le marchée Cardigan

The initial purpose for this blog was to document my retirement years. Very quickly my dabbing in watercolours turned into a passion and a serious hobby. Having a bilocational lifestyle with a summer place in Launching PEI afforded me a spot to show my work in the developing Cardigan’s Farmers’ Market. Seven years later and I am still getting excited for opening day June 15th and showing my framed watercolours, and unique hand -painted cards. My involvement in this not-for-profit organization has mushroomed. I coordinate the creative, local souls with arts and crafts to sell, and am happy to have 15 or more artisans to begin the season.

L’avantage d’avoir deux demeures est d’avoir deux vies avec deux groupes d’amis et la possibilité de profiter de la vie de la métropole de Montréal et la vie rurale de l’île du Prince Édouard (IPÉ). L’hiver je profite d’instruction en aquarelles avec le group d’art St Patrick pour aînés et le centre d’arts visuelles. L’été je me lance dans le plein air avec les paysages de lPÉ et cette année un cours en plein air avec Poppy Balser à Digby NÉ. L’été me trouve au marché de Cardigan les vendredis et samedis.

And the two locations mean 2 groups of artists to inspire me. In PEI, participation in the Five day Points East Plein Air festival( July 3-7, this year) and the Seniors College Wednesday summer paint outs, not to mention plein air duos with Kathy Stuart. Montreal has the St Patrick Art Group(seniors) with some members known for over 35 years, new motivating artists at the Visual ARTS center and high caliber instructors like Elizabeth Galante. And I have a high school friend, who nudges me into creativity, Helene Meyer (see the Iris weave in photos)!

La préparation pour le marché a le volet personnel–peindre mes aquarelles. Mais comme membre du CA, on a les réunions de planification et la grande corvée du 8 juin, quand tout doit être lavé et nettoyé dans la gare CN Cardigan après un hiver sans visites. Pendant la saison, je suis à la caisse semi-automatique ( un autre apprentissage de la retraite) l’autre aspect de la préparation est la publicité. Je me charge de notre page Facebook, Cardigan’s Farmers’ Market.

Cardigans Farmers’ Market

Iris Mosaic

Point Prim’s Rocks

Sunset on the Cardigan River

Being prepared to open for the season is only possible with the hard work of many volunteers. The furniture stored in the market will be put outside and the inside will scrubbed down during The Clean Up Bee, Saturday June 8th. Last year we had a new roof installed to greet our customers, this year’s fund-raising will go to bathroom upgrades! did you notice the paint on the market? Our building is the old CN train station of Cardigan and we choose to maintain it with its original colours. The sun and elements do require paint ….this year will will add a Paint Bee in July, once the temperature warms up! There is much more to say, but if you’d like to follow our doings, please join our Facebook group, Cardigan’s Farmers’ Market!

Photos: Cardigan’s Farmers’ Market/ Poppy Balser in Digby / Iris Mosaic/ beginning my Plein Air at Point Prim, near Digby/ watercolour card of sunset along Cardigan river, PEI

Bay of Fundy Plein Air

Rock outcroppings appear and disappear rapidly with the receding and rising of the highest tides of the world in the Bay of Fundy. This element adds more challenges to Plein Air painting. Watercolours require methodological, but quick, application under conditions of changing sunlight, shadows, wind and warmth.

Jeudi, le temps était couvert et des épaisseurs de linge étaient de rigueur contre un froid humide. Sous le regard et l’instruction de Poppy Balser, douze aquarellistes se sont installées près du phare de Point Prim en Nouvelle-Écosse. On a produit douze peintures d’angle et de composition différents.

This 4-day workshop in a Digby was to be only a plein air event, but weather interfered with our plans. The first 2 days were held in the town museum, sheltered from the rain and cold. The subject of our second day was a rock-head jutting into the Bay of Fundy complete with spray and splash. It was a good preparation for being outside at the Point Prim lighthouse.

J’ai choisi un endroit près du phare, en haut de la colline. L’avantage de ce point était que le vent était moins important. Ce n’était pas une journée chaude, 8C et sans soleil! Parmi les gris, il y avait quelques couleurs. Mon aquarelle capte les roches mouillées et sèches, ainsi que la profondeur. Ce qui n’est pas évident est la rapidité avec laquelle la mer se retire, exposant de plus en plus de roches!

Imagine a height of 16 meters (5 stories at maximum points) of water rushing in and out twice a day….water level changes of that magnitude impacts the scene one is observing to paint! This was even more obvious watching the docked fishing. boats breaking the horizon as the tide rushed in at the Digby Marina Friday morning. The trick I learned was to simplify- use few colours, few brushes and minimize the busy, crowded scene to focus on a key item.

Chaque atelier m’apporte de nouvelles connaissances. Poppy Balser a des talents artistiques et pédagogiques incroyables. C’était ma cinquième chance d’apprendre d’elle. En bonus, notre groupe de 12 femmes du Canada et les États réunissait des gens forts sympathiques avec talent et de l’expérience en aquarelles!

What a way to beige a Maritime stay! Excellent instruction, artistic development, new friends from near and distant parts of North America, superior accommodation at Ocean Hillside Bed and Breakfast, over 5 fabulous seafood meals (including our welcome scallop supper hosted by Poppy and her husband Patrick), a visit to Poppy’s studio and the stunning world-renown tides of Digby! No, it was not a posh cruise nor African Safari, it was just the best kind of get-away that I could imagine! Thanks everyone.

Les photos: Point Prim, Poppy Balser au Port de Digby et la scène j’ai choisi à Digby.

Pictures of my completed paintings to come!