Wednesday, January 31, 2007

One Down…

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Eleven to go. I am so proud of completing an entire month of photo-blogging. I never thought I would make it. So, on to the next month. I was thinking about Febuary today and all that is contained within its 28 short days. February was named after the Latin term februum, which means purification. In the spirit of purification, I am taking a vow of silence (blog-silence that is) and the next 28 days will be all about pure imagery. Cheers, enjoy, and I’ll chat again in March!

We don’t see things as they are; we see things as we are.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

I Think I Lost My Funny

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There are times when I find I live too much in my head. I stare blankly at nothing and my husband asks me what the hell I am thinking about that has me so entranced and I reply “nothing” which I have no doubt is completely untrue. The fact is, my mind is whirring so fast that I haven’t actually caught up to processing the random thoughts that I have been having. This has been happening a lot lately. So, if I haven’t even processed the thoughts and ideas, it is even harder to discuss them or be funny about them!

I guess this all boils down to a pathetic apology for my lack of funny anecdotes and clever little stories of late. All I can say is that taking on this blog as a project is resulting in a lot of creative ideas for future works. So stay tuned because you will not be disappointed.

So, as I try to get to the bottom of all the random thoughts, I come across some words by Jim Morrison. First a poem…

What are you doing here?
What do you want?
Is it music?
We can play music.
But you want more.
You want something & someone new.
Am I right?
Of course I am.
I know what you want.
You want ecstasy
Desire & dreams.
Things not exactly what they seem.
I lead you this way, he pulls that way.
I’m not singing to an imaginary girl.
I’m talking to you, my self.
Let’s recreate the world.
The palace of conception is burning.

Look. See it burn.
Bask in the warm hot coals.

You’re too young to be old
You don’t need to be told
You want to see things as they are.
You know exactly what I do

And now an interesting idea…
“I think the interview is the new art form. I think the self-interview is the essence of creativity. Asking yourself questions and trying to find answers.”

So, in an attempt to find the answers I ask myself, “what is the top 10 current soundtrack to your mind scroll?”

1. California Vacation (Feat. Snoop & Xzibit) – The Game
2. Westchester Lady – Bob James
3. Dreadlock Holiday – 10cc
4. How Come? – Morgan Heritage
5. Fat Cakes – Jimmy McGriff
6. Where are we? – dZihan & Kamien
7. Raid de Barn – Anthony B
8. Me and You – Cassie
9. Cassava Piece – Augustus Pablo
10. Shake down – Akon

Monday, January 29, 2007


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Kakitama Soup
Nishikimori Salad

Teppan Combination
Fresh Chicken, Sirloin of Beef and Scallops, cooked Teppanyaki Style
with Vegetables and Steamed Rice
Seafood Kushiyaki
Brochettes of Scallop, Salmon & Shrimp, cooked Teppanyaki Style
with Vegetables and Steamed Rice

Green Tea Ice Cream
Fruit Sherbet

Green Tea

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Making Marks

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mark n
1. a colored, discolored, or dirty patch, a scratch, dent, or impression, either deliberately or accidentally made, that makes a usually small area of a surface visibly different from the rest
2. a recognizable sign or symbol used, for example, to indicate ownership, the quality or origin of goods, or punctuation in a piece of writing (often used in combination)
3. a cross or other symbol used in place of a signature by somebody who cannot write
4. an action, gesture, or other outward sign of somebody’s feeling or attitude
5. something that is evidence of somebody’s or something’s influence on or involvement in something
6. a distinctive and identifying feature or characteristic
7. a number, letter, or percentage indicating somebody’s assessment of something, for example, the correctness or quality of answers to examination questions or somebody’s performance in a gymnastic or ice-skating contest
8. any object, sign, or line used to indicate the position, extent, or amount of something
9. the amount, distance, or level reached by something
10. the desired or required standard for something

I went out for a long walk in the snow today. It was one of those days where it had snowed overnight and continued to snow all morning. Miles of virgin track lay in front of me, ready and waiting to receive my footprints. I went out with my camera, with the full intention of shooting some photos of the beautiful winter wonderland down in the ravine close to where I live. As soon as I shot my first photo, the battery in my camera died and I realized that I didn’t have a spare with me.

I had no concern about the fact that I had no camera to document my day’s journey as it became more about the fresh snow that I was leaving my mark on. I walked and walked and continued walking for a lot longer than I had planned, simply enjoying the track I was leaving behind me and enjoying looking at and following in the tracks or those who had come before me.

I have been thinking a lot lately about mark-making and the importance of the things we leave behind us. How will our marks be deciphered by those who come after. Will they find them relevant and important, or frivolous and non-sensical? What will they do with them? Will they study them? Will they honour them? Will they ignore them?

Saturday, January 27, 2007


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I fully admit that I am flaking out on the blog entry today. I would like it duly noted that there is a photo posted here, and technically some writing as well. The quality I cannot vouch for. What can I say, I was felled by this fantastic steak I ate for dinner. So, blame it on the cows and everyone be jealous over my fancy shmancy dinner!

Friday, January 26, 2007

The Escape Artist

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There are some days when I wake up and I just want to pull the covers back up over my head and sleep the day away. Most of these days happen in January. It has to be one of the most depressing months.

A teacher friend of mine was telling me last weekend about one of the kids in her grade two class who hates going to school. He believes that if he is a cat, then he will not have to go to school. He has now become convinced that he is a cat. He sits at his desk and meows and bat around a string while pretending he is bored. He still has yet to be sent home for all his cat-ness…

Ah, if only life were so easy.

This is where worlds of fantasy and escape become places of comfort. I was watching the snow fall this afternoon and it just looked so pretty. My eyes were scanning my desk for inspiration for today’s image when I can across some leftover birthday flowers that are slowly withering away. Upon closer inspection I realized there was still some life left in them…

Here is the world of fantasy that I visited this afternoon…

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Art…with an ounce of pretension

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Goddamn it has been super cold all day! I had such lofty goals to go out a take photographs of the world today. I feel like the minute details living on my desk have been captured to death. I was going to wander the streets for new inspiration and hopefully some cool “snaps” and then I got up. I know we have all been waiting with baited breath for winter to come so that the polar ice caps will freeze again, but really…

So the best I could do on a day like today was take a picture of the window. It was going quite well in fact, until our three cute cats started being curious about the camera and just insisted that I take photos of them. People think we are crazy for having three black cats but

1. None of them are completely black
2. We are pretty sure that the line between cat lovers and crazy cat people is between 3 and 4
3. One day we will cross that line and get three white ones

This is Hoohoo. She has a white hoohoo. We think she was the runt because she can’t really purr or meow, she kinda just chirps once in a while. Isn’t she cute?

So one of the things I have decided is an important thing for me to do is to start going to more gallery openings. As an artist, I find this really difficult. I can do the whole moody, brooding thing. I am sensitive to the emotions of the people around me and how they feel affects my moods. I can definitely dress in black from head to toe for days on end without repeating an outfit. What I cannot do is shmooze at these opening thingys. As it turns out, shockingly, I am quite shy.

So, a new gallery in our neighbourhood was having its inaugural opening tonight. I can’t even blame laziness for not going, that is how close it is. So we bundled up and braved the freezing weather and set out for this opening. I swear we lasted about five minutes in total. The chichi haircuts, glasses of red wine, people standing in front of the art talking about their cars. The overpriced art! We did a complete circle, grabbed a cube of cheese and left. In that five minutes, I saw photos that did nothing for me, a few paintings that I really liked and appreciated a nice small-sized space that could put on some nice shows…and I didn’t even have to put on make-up. Maybe next time, I will last ten whole minutes before I run screaming out the door…

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Losing It

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Have you ever been so busy that your mind kind of shuts itself down? Sometimes I think I bite off more than I can chew, just for the sake of chewing it. At any rate, circuits overloaded today and even though I am swamped the only thing going through my mind is the song "Let Go" by Frou Frou. Something about the lyrics "beauty in the breakdown" seem to perpetuate the problem...

It's a good tune...check it out if you like, or not...whatever

"Let Go"

drink up baby down
Are you in or are you out?
Leave your things behind
'Cause it's all going off without you
Excuse me too busy you're writing your tragedy
These mishaps
You bubble-wrap
When you've no idea what you're like

So, let go,let go
Jump in
Oh well, what you waiting for?
It's all right
'Cause there's beauty in the breakdown
So, let go, l-let go
Just get in
Oh, it's so amazing here
It's all right
'Cause there's beauty in the breakdown

It gains the more it gives
And then it rises with the fall
So hand me that remote
Can't you see that all that stuff's a sideshow?
Such boundless pleasure
We've no time for later
Now you can't await
your own arrival
you've twenty seconds to comply

So, let go, so let go
Jump in
Oh well, what you waiting for?
It's alright
'Cause there's beauty in the breakdown
So, let go, yeah let go
Just get in
Oh, it's so amazing here
It's all right
'Cause there's beauty in the breakdown

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Workin It Out

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Wheeeeeewwwwwwwwwwwww! I just got in under the wire here...

So I have been memed and I am juggling a lot of different jobs on my plate right now and I will fully admit that I am struggling to keep up with the blog. But I am determined! So here we go… five things you may not know about me…

#1. I used to watch Fame. It was like, my all-time favourite show. Many of you probably already know that. Thing is, I still love Fame and I would watch it all the time, but my husband would divorce me.

#2. I get the hiccups when I eat dry bagels.

#3. I have 25 pairs of shoes. I am surprised that I have that many, and I am surprised that I don’t have more than that.

#4. pro·gress n

1. gradual development or improvement of something
2. movement forward or onward
3. an official royal tour (archaic)

1. vi to develop or advance continuously
2. vi to move forward or onward
3. vt to bring something toward completion

I am not sure which I relate to the least, the noun or the verb

#5. I married a nudist. Well, not really, but he sure does walk around our house naked a whole lot. I usually take photos (nothing even remotely sexual) just stupid stuff really. The thing is, I never do anything with the photos (you won't even really be able to find them so don't bother looking) which is a shame. They would make great blackmail material, because I can make him do some pretty stupid stuff for me to take pictures of.

Monday, January 22, 2007

The Big Smoke

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People always ask me how I survived winters in Vancouver for 10 years. They always talk about the rain and how it made everything so grey and depressing. May I present...

Winter in Toronto

bleak adj
1. providing little comfort or shelter
2. without hope or expectation of success or improvement
3. unpleasantly cold, dull, and windy

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Poetry...sort of

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When I think back over the events of last night, my mind comes to rest on the pleasant memory of a beautiful plate of colourful, sparkling cubes. A true delight to many of the senses. Delicate layers of bright hues, bursting with the tangy flavours that are mixed into a cosmopolitan seem like a pleasurable experience that is not to be missed.

and now:
a non-traditional haiku

No matter what one might say
jello shots
never a good idea

In the clear light of day, the shimmering mountain of a fun party favour comes more into focus and the realization that my memories may not be terribly accurate

It has been requested of me to attempt to spell what that blubbering mass might sound like.


Saturday, January 20, 2007

The big "29"... again

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When I was little, whenever I asked my parents how old they were they always replied "29". It became a long standing joke that every year they turned 29. Again and again. Then I hit 29. They still hit 29 religiously every year. So here's to being the same age as my parents...again.

Friday, January 19, 2007


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Judging by the titles of the last two entries, I can tell my birthday must be looming. Every year on January 20th, I celebrate a very personal New Year’s. Every year I try to sit down and write in a journal (Violet may be opened after all). I have a pile of entries from Jan 20th’s with little or no writing in between. I never vow in my “New Year’s” resolutions that I will write more in my journals, there is no point.

What I do try to do is take stock of where I am, what I am proud of accomplishing over the last year, and some dreams I have for the coming one. Hmmm, I guess I had better start thinking on that one. But not tonight…. Tonight is to start enjoying my birthday celebrations! Cheers!

Thursday, January 18, 2007


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I am still a little bit in shock. In fact, the words have been shocked right out of me today. The day started out fairly normally, kind of boring really. I spent some time working on websites and getting the online shopping for the blog up and running (check it out here if you like) In the afternoon however, something crazy happened. Someone actually hired ME to do some accounting for them. That's right. No words. ACCOUNTING! Let's all reflect on that for a little bit....

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

LPG - Test #2

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adj. la·zi·er, la·zi·est
1. Resistant to work or exertion; disposed to idleness.
2. Slow-moving; sluggish: a lazy river.
3. Conducive to idleness or indolence: a lazy summer day.
4. Depicted as reclining or lying on its side. Used of a brand on livestock.

Please note: the above definition in no way is meant to indicate anything about the character of the subject depicted in the photograph:)

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Saturday Afternoons

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So here is how I spiral from a lovely Saturday afternoon with my husband to muttering four-letter words in the shower this morning (thankfully no one but the cats were around to hear it). Consider it a mapping of an overactive creative mind.

Back up a few days

Saturday rolls around and we are wondering what to do. Looking through NOW magazine, I spot a few things happening down on Queen W. that would be fun to go and check out (I mean, it’s not like we hadn’t been down there twice already last week). Being a good girl and obviously devoted blogger, I put on lip gloss and grabbed my camera and off we go.

Blah, blah blah…Toronto is such a creative city, filled with talent, emerging artist scene…you can fill in the rest. We come across a lovely little table outside what I believe is a men’s clothing store (I am still not sure). This table is covered in boxes filled with little letters. Enter heavenly music here. Being the language geek that I am, means there is no way that anything can tear me away from these boxes of beautiful lil letters! Except maybe one thing. An angel, I mean the store owner, comes outside and watches me drool. “There are tones more inside.” Dear god. I hope my husband didn’t have any more plans, cuz my afternoon is booked now.

I was very restrained and after much scrutiny, managed to walk out of the store with three letters in my pocket that spell my name. I had no idea what I was going to do with the old typeset, but as far as I was concerned it was the wisest $1.50 I have spent in a long time. Isn’t it pretty?

So the letters have been sitting on my desk next to the purple journal (still unopened) since Saturday. I have played with them and moved them around, but they only really spell one thing that makes any sense, and they have really had no destiny other that this. So when something sits on my desk for long enough, I will eventually photograph it.

Fast forward to this morning. The resulting photograph is being posted here today for you to enjoy and the light bulbs are going off in my head. I love the way the photos turned out and a new project is born. The brain has been racing ever since (hence the muttering in the shower). I guess there is something to be said about January hibernation. The creative juices are flowing here and I am now madly searching for information on mapping systems and symbolic systems (anyone with any info, feel free to fill me with your knowledge).

That’s it for today, I am off on another tangent (so much for focus) and I guess I will be heading back down to Queen Street one more time…

Monday, January 15, 2007

Where It's At

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fo·cus n
1. concentrated effort or attention on a particular thing
2. an area of concern, responsibility, or investigation
3. a concentrated and unified quality
4. the quality of being sharply defined with clear edges and contrast
5. the condition of seeing sharply and clearly

1. to give your main attention to one thing or one aspect of a thing
2. to adjust your vision so that you see clearly and sharply

On the subject of focus…I am impressed that I have managed to keep up the blog EVERY DAY for this long. It has been challenging some days, as I have been trying to post fine art (ok sometimes the photos may be lacking, but I have been trying to make up for it with the words) and to be proud of the stuff I have been posting.

I have been thinking about a number of new projects lately, and the excitement of it all has me scattered in many directions unable to start on any of them. The pressure to do some shooting every day has certainly gotten the creative juices flowing. It is very difficult being a full-time artist, when your focus is split between creative process and trying to figure out how to pay your rent. Most of the time it means that I am not a full-time artist! Ahhhhhhhhhh for a patron!

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Things Change

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Sitting in the back of Patrick’s red pick-up truck, I watch the ribbon of dusty, yellow road stretch endlessly behind us. It marks our path along one of Belize’s only two highways as we hurtle further and further away from the tiny jungle town of San Ignacio. It is nearing the end of the dry season and the stunted trees that whiz by are thirsty for the coming rains. The earth is cracked and parched after almost three months of drought. Despite the reckless speed of the driver, time seems to be moving at half speed. James wakes me out of me reverie and lazily passes me a loosely rolled joint. It is hard to believe that it was only yesterday that Emily and I hooked up with Patrick and six others over a beer in town, and planned to head out to the river this morning.
The early morning heat acts as a sedative, and I feel like I am half asleep as we haul the canoes off the rack and begin heading down to the river’s edge. The Belize River cuts through the centre of the country like an appendix scar, and stretches out for almost two hundred kilometres before it finally reaches the Caribbean waters. Finally in our boats and pushing off from the dark, mucky bank it dawns on me for real. There is nothing but two hundred kilometres of curving banks and emerald green forest ahead of me. It does not take long for the sounds of the forest to lull my senses into submission for everything that is about to unfold.

The olive water beneath us now is some of the deepest that we will travel through over the next couple of days. The scorching temperatures have deprived the river bed by almost five meters of water through January and February and the pale, muddy cliffs on either side are a testament to the season. In some places the banks had given out, and the thin trunks with their heavy broccoli tops had tumbled into the water, revealing the rapid life cycle of the vegetation in this sub-tropical jungle. I feel like every breath I take has been created just for me, and every living thing here breathes with me.

As the morning wears on, we weave our delicate course back and forth to avoid the treacherous, shallow, sandy banks. Back and forth, like the tip of a cat’s tail, methodically planning its next pounce. We are gliding and drifting, and allowing the current to do the work pulling us to our ultimate destination, days away. Patrick is in the back of my canoe, expertly slicing his paddle in to steer us on our zig-zag course. We have all been eerily silent over the last couple of hours, drinking in the entire jungle experience. I am lost in my thoughts and dreams and I linger in my pleasant isolation. My ears are hyper sensitized to the songs of all of the life forms present around me, and I am utterly captivated.

* * *

The essence of rural settlement pierces my nose before my eyes are ever introduced to what lies high up on the banks around the next river bend. Smoke from a fire looms into view as we approach the three run down buildings that make up a small riverside town. I am surprised to see these signs of habitation, assuming that my travel companions would be the only people I would see over the coming week. The midday sun has raised the humidity level, and every sight, smell, and sound feels close. The scent that alerted me to the human presence hovers in the heavy air, and becomes ever more offensive as we float towards the town. The pungent odour of blood assaults my brain as we gently approach what can only be a slaughterhouse. Two men clad in stained tank tops and faded jeans stop their butchering long enough to wipe the sweat from their foreheads, smearing them with blood. The world goes mute as I stare into the faces of the men. I am holding my breath under their gaze as we slip by. Leaving the town behind us, I turn to face the way ahead. There is the unmistakable sound of splashing as lumps of massacred flesh and sharp bone deemed unfit for human consumption become a tasty snack for the lazy crocodiles that lie below the calm surface.

As the sun reaches its zenith in the sky, our baking skin is screaming for mercy. We decide to stop at a low sandy bank to have some lunch and a respite in the shade of the thick bush. Unable to deal with the idea of making a fire, the consensus is that we make sandwiches and crack into the rum punch while there is still ice in the cooler. I plant myself on the soft banks, and my ass is grateful for a change from the hard seat of the canoe. The sun has sapped me of my energy and my eyes become fixated on the water that seems to be calling my name. I look around at Patrick, Julie, Emily, and Dred who have fallen asleep under a giant palm. Steve is writing in his journal next to James, who is having his own fantasies staring at the water. He looks up and catches my eye, he is grinning. The sound of splashing breaks our locked gaze, and gives me cause for alarm. Crocodiles? Both of our heads snap back towards the river in time to see two young boys playfully swimming by. If they are in the water, there must be nothing to fear in this part of the river. Our eyes fix on each other again, but only for the two seconds before we leap up and start tearing off our clothes. We run screaming to the edge and dive in without a moment of hesitation. Our whoops of delight rouse the others and soon a full scale water fight is underway as we try not to lose our footing on the steep, slippery rock beneath us.

* * *

The sun burns its path down the centre of the river, and it seems that our only goal for the afternoon is to stay as cool as possible. The insects are humming and buzzing their protest to the heat, creating an electricity in the air. I am covered in a film of sweat that attracts a vibrant, shimmering blue butterfly to land on my arm and begin to absorb the minerals that are leaking out through every pore. I dip my hand into the silky warmth of the water and douse my head for the umpteenth time since we left our shady lunch spot. Patrick steers the boat to hug the banks wherever the depth will allow. Our three boats are drifting close enough together to allow us to pass the bottle of rum punch back and forth. No matter how much I swallow, it never seems to be enough. The afternoon temperatures have drawn the wildlife closer to the water, in the hopes it will have a cooling influence. The result is an increase in the overall volume of the wildlife sounds around us. The intensity is almost too much, and I fear that the sun’s effects will make me crazy. My skin is searing.

I spot a beautiful overhanging tree up ahead and encourage Patrick to park it for a moment and roll one. I tie the leader to one of the low hanging branches and the other boats moor onto ours. A slight breeze picks up and dances over the surface of the water, rustling the pile of dead giant palm leaves that have collected around a fallen log not far ahead. The moment of relief has a brief quieting effect as everything from the smallest frog to the largest mammal just stops to savour the breath of air that plays across their faces. Time stands completely still. I don’t know how long my face was turned up into the draft, but I do know it did not last long enough to cool my boiling blood. The forest comes back to life again, their calls raging in protest against the blazing rays. Another gust gathers force and blows across the crowns of the trees far above us. I can hear it, see it, even smell it. It rattles a family of howler monkeys sleeping high in the branches of the tree we are sitting under, and they are annoyed to be awakened from their slumber, responding with thrashing growls that sound more like wildcats. Dred responds with his own growls that encourage a communication of sorts between them. My mouth hangs open in awe and fascination as they voice their frustrations to each other. When the head of the howler family begins to descend the boughs for a closer investigation, I untie our line to the shore and set us all adrift in a clump.

The sluggish current carries the canoe island while we drink and smoke. Birds accompany us on our journey as they troll the water for fish. A giant white egret stands on the shore with its beak under its wing though it emerges to witness the strange sight sailing by. In perfectly magical, synchronized intervals, blue and white herons swoop down off of their perches with a single deafening flap of their wings and then glide gracefully, silently just above the surface. Kingfishers plunge and dip in their dance and lead our procession. It seems like we are being given our own private show as finally the sun’s intensity begins to wane. My body is starting to feel relief as we begin looking for a good flat clearing on a high bank to pack it in for the night. The spot has to be just right.

* * *

As we all sit around the campfire after dining on rice, beans, and iguana, I reflect on the events of the day. To my amazement, the setting of the sun has brought the rest of the animals that sleep during the day to life. Crickets chirp as the howlers roar all around us. Some type of bird provides percussion with an unfailing whoop that will last through the entire night. Thousands of different species of frog sound their mating calls, timing it precisely so that each croak is heard individually. The jungle symphony rises in pitch and then falls away, over and over again. We shine our flashlights into the water in the hopes of spying the reflective eyes of prowling crocs. We smoke constantly to keep the mosquitoes out of our eyes, while I can sense the small jungle animals rushing in the bushes. Our three fires at the corners of the campsites mark our territory to any curious, unwanted visitors. Somehow I feel safe even though I can feel hundreds of pairs of eyes studying my every movement.

Finally, it comes time to say good night and head off to my tent. My mind is on sensory overload and I need to still it. On the path up from the bank I am enveloped by a swarm of fireflies. Before today, I thought they were fictional. Their glowing bodies enchant me and I stop and watch them flit around me, and then off to their next destination. I climb into my tent and lie down on top of my sleeping bag since it is still way too humid to be inside of it. I have no idea how I will ever get to sleep when the sound of the nighttime musicians is amplified off of every surface to the point of almost deafening me. As I am slowly engulfed by my dreams, I realise that I cannot wait to get up and do this all again tomorrow...

Saturday, January 13, 2007

mmmmmmmm pertty

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If it isn't summer where you are, gaze upon this and think warm thoughts :)

Friday, January 12, 2007

It Ain't No Golden Egg

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Of Note:

Horoscope: It is with some anxiety that you view slow progress in an important area of your life. While it's true that some things just cannot be hurried, there will, in your case, be a way to make certain plans work well, even if you're not quite sure how, quite yet.

Tarot Card: Three of Cups – Emotion/intuition takes on form, becomes more defined and more restricted

Planetary Oddities: The moon will be square Venus tonight indicating that the inward sense of self, emotions and the psyche will be challenging relationship, love and sense of beauty.

Well no wonder I have been feeling so %&@#*ed up today.

And now, a modern fable:

Early one morning a pretty enough girl woke up to find herself sitting in a canoe bobbing gently at the waters edge. She was not filled with concern as to how she may have arrived in a such a spot, but simply looked down in the canoe and noticed a delicately carved paddle. She picked the paddle up and silently dipped it into the water, pushing off from the bank.

The outer hull of the canoe was a bright and cheerful shade of blue with a silver dragonfly stenciled on it. It moved quite majestically through the water under the guidance of the girl’s strong and sure strokes, and she decided to name her canoe Louise. They quickly made their way across a large bay and found themselves beginning to navigate through a series of islands.

The girl slowed her methodical paddling so as to get a better look at the islands flying past her. The first one was quite small, but was covered with the softest looking green grass and beautiful purple flowers that scented the air as the girl moved past. As she began to leave the island in her wake, she looked back and noticed another canoe tethered to the bank. She craned her neck to make sure her eyes were not playing tricks on her and caught a flash of gold in the light of sunrise.

Before she could think on it too heavily another island was coming into view. This one smelled even sweeter than the last and it seemed that the purple flowers were an even brighter hue than on the first island. On this one however, they poked through between the stands of arbutus trees. The bark on the trees seemed to positively sparkle in the early morning light, showering a rainbow of colour on the girl and Louise as they moved past. Again the girl noticed another canoe, painted just like Louise as they passed. The girl made sure to pass this canoe a little bit closer and leaned over to take a good look this time. Inside the boat was a golden egg.

Before she knew it, they had come upon a third island. It was even more awesome than the last two put together. The trees were even taller and a breeze seemed to play a song on the leaves. The girl leaned back, listened to the soothing lullaby of the trees and allowed Louise to just glide past. The girl allowed her mind to wander and think about the golden egg she had seen before. Lost in thought, she managed to lift her head just in time to notice another canoe drifting by in the water. Louise had brought her close enough that she decided to stand up and take a closer look at the golden egg inside. As she stood, Louise, who had been so steady all morning began to rock and the girl sat down again. She wished she could have looked at the egg for longer, but she had managed to memorize exactly how the sunlight had gleamed off its shiny surface.

And so the day went. They passed many islands, each more extraordinary than the last and the beauty that they saw was unlike anything else. They saw many other canoes each with a gold egg inside. As the sun began to sink into the water ahead of them, the girl had no idea where she was, but remained unconcerned. She had come to trust Louise throughout the day, but one question nagged at her as night began to fall. Although she had quite enjoyed Louise’s company she wondered about the lack of golden eggs in her boat. Had she done something wrong? Did she not deserve a golden egg?

The girl was amazed at all the paddling she had done during the day, and even more amazed that she was not at all tired. Darkness enveloped them completely as she passed another canoe. Without the sunlight, she could no longer make out the egg though she assumed it was there. The girl gave up looking and forged ahead. As she paddled, the sky began to lighten again and suddenly a giant full moon began to rise directly ahead of them. She began to feel lighter as she was bathed in moonlight. She watched the moon rise high overhead. She smiled and paddled on, her eyes sparkling, eager to see the next island.

...and then there is this

yup, that's right

there is a flaming onion in my boat today

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Just One Moment

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There is something that happens to me when I stand before something as large and majestic as the Pacific Ocean. Aldous Huxley explains:

“To be shaken out of the ruts of ordinary perception, to be shown for a few timeless hours the outer and the inner world, not as they appear to an animal obsessed with words and notions, but as they are apprehended, by Mind at Large – this is an experience of inestimable value to everyone.”

And so, this appeals to me (perhaps it is his run-on sentence) when I think about experiences I have had in Tofino. Words cannot do them justice, so I turn to art. I have always been a little bit obsessed with flipbooks. So here I present to you Cox Beach. Don’t think about it too much, just dig it.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007


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I have been madly working on some new stuff over the last few days. One of the latest things I have been working on is my 20 Views series. It takes a while to go and collect images, and a trip to Salzburg, Austria over the holidays is resulting in maybe the coolest one yet. As I work on these particular images, sometimes really interesting things emerge during the creation process. I thought I would share one such event with all of it is. Other than that, I have been working on a couple of flipbooks as well. Stay tuned

Tuesday, January 9, 2007

LPG Bellycam - Test #1

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mun·dane [muhn-deyn, muhn-deyn] –adjective
1. Of or pertaining to this world or earth as contrasted with heaven; worldly; earthly
2. Relating to, characteristic of, or concerned with commonplaces; ordinary.

Monday, January 8, 2007

Who Cares why the Sky is Blue…It Just Is

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I will admit to being the type of person who will buy something just because of the colour of it. For example, I came across this beautiful violet wrap journal in a paper shop not too long ago. The entire cover was a photo of stunning Jacquard silk. The cover was complete with metallic accents included in the pattern and as soon as I picked it up for a closer look, I knew that I was done. Now, I have tried many times over the years to keep a journal. On the rare occasion I was successful, but more recently (as my stack of empty journals can attest to) I have not been successful. Beautiful Violet holds a place of honour smack in the middle of my desk and I am still enraptured by her purpliness every day.

I am transfixed by colours. There are sometimes when a particular hue can stop me in my tracks and force me to meditate on it. Certain hues can bring memories of different times, places and events flooding back. For example this colour sends me right back to a beautiful day in the Yucatan. My husband and I had paid a fisherman in San Felipe to take us around to the other side of a giant sandbar where we spent the whole day wandering through the shallow warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico. This one reminds me of candles during the Christmas season a few years ago where I decided I didn’t like the traditional colours of “red” and “green” and decided to decorate with “burgundy” and “mint”. Finally, this last one puts me on the beach in a small bay outside Mulege in Baja. I can feel the sand running through my fingers as I tried not to vomit after pushing past the “safe limit” of my egg allergy at breakfast that morning.

For me oftentimes certain colours can open up a world of ideas and fantasy that lead to the production of art. This is an interesting idea to me. Thinking about it, I could see how one might have a certain colour in mind and then embark on creating a painting or sculpture that is inspired by that colour. I guess I don’t really know how other photographers go about making photographs. For starters, I think many take photographs instead of making them. Many fine art photographers think about composition and subject matter primarily while others may study light. I would be interested in comments from the photographers out there checking this blog. I would love to know what the first thing is that inspires you.

As for me, I paint with light I guess. I may not always start with a colour in mind before I pick up my camera, but often once I have looked through the viewfinder the colour inspires the image. If there is something that sparkles, glitters or made of shiny metal, even better.

Just talk to my husband about how often I ask him if it would be ok to throw a vial of sparkles on the cats or all over the apartment! (If you look hard in our bathroom you will find some.)

Sunday, January 7, 2007

I Can't Be Exciting All The Time

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Sometimes I imagine that I am my pet fish. He doesn’t have a name because I have flushed so many dead ones down the toilet, that I figured I wouldn’t name this one and his luck might be better. He had a rough beginning… We brought him home from the pet store and decided to put him in the fish tank with all of our others. He lasted about 4 minutes before a big mean redlight tetra munched off a bunch of his top fin! Fuckin bastard couldn’t even wait til I had photographed him! I quickly relocated him to a home of his own and got JP to flush the lil jerk down the toilet. See Ya!

So no-name has been flourishing away in my office. His fins are even starting to grow back. I have been studying the fish in the house for a while now. I am not sure what it is about them that I am so drawn too. Perhaps it is the muffled silence of their world that appeals so much. I wonder what dub sounds like in a fishbowl? Anyhoo, that is my observation for today. I tracked his movements back and forth for a while, he must have been pacing for me…

Saturday, January 6, 2007

If you are lost

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Sometimes all it takes is to stand somewhere like Long Beach to make me feel just how small I am. Then I look down and follow the path that some tiny creature has carved into the sand and I understand the importance of my journey.

Friday, January 5, 2007

I Like Trains

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People ask me all the time what my art is about. To me, it would seem that the person asking the question is seeking a completely irrelevant answer. I could give a very general sweeping answer covering the wide variety of photographs I have taken (that would constitute my “body of work”) or I could talk about the things I was thinking/seeing when I made an individual photo. I like to think of all of these types of answers as an interesting side note to what the more important question is.

“What do you think it’s about?”

I used to struggle when I was in art school when it came time to do our critiques. We would all put our shiny, freshly printed unframed photos up on the wall and discuss things like content, intent and undoubtedly whether or not and why we liked it. Crit after crit I struggled to talk about the meaning of my work (most of the time I just made it up). My co-founder of the (Lazy Photographer Girls – a whole other entry will be devoted to that if I ever get around to it) and I talked for what seemed like hours about why art couldn’t just look cool.

Well, I believe that it can, which brings us back to the question:

“What do you think it’s about?”

If you are intrigued/moved/inspired/desperate to purchase one of my pieces, there must be a reason for it. I enjoy talking with my viewers about what it is that they see in the work, what about it is speaking to them. Ultimately if YOU take a piece of art home (hopefully one of mine) and put it up on YOUR wall, then perhaps it is about YOU.

Please feel free to leave your comments ☺

LPG Rocks!!!!!

Thursday, January 4, 2007

Nothing is Lighter than Light

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whim·sy also whim·sey (hwĭm'zē, wĭm'-): an impulsive, often illogical turn of mind

Wednesday, January 3, 2007

Hopefully you know who you are!

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This photo fills me with the childhood spirit. Two “soul friends” are the subject in this image and they truly inspire me with this image and in their real lives to grab onto that spirit and relish it as often as I can. So I am dedicating this blog entry to all of my friends who help to fuel that energy inside of me. I look back to the words of A. A. Milne to express my devotion to all of you. Sorry life gets busy sometimes!

“Pooh, promise you won’t forget about me, ever. Not even when I’m a hundred.”
Pooh thought for a little.
“How old shall I be then?”
Pooh nodded.
“I promise,” he said.
Still with his eyes on the world Christopher Robin put out a hand and felt for Pooh’s paw.
“Pooh,” said Christopher Robin earnestly, “if I- if I’m not quite---“ he stopped and tried again—“Pooh, whatever happens, you will understand, won’t you?”
“Understand what?”
“Oh, nothing.” He laughed and jumped to his feet. “Come on!”
“Where?” said Pooh.
“Anywhere,” said Christopher Robin.

* * * * *

So they went off together. But wherever they go, and whatever happens to them on the way, in that enchanted place on the top of the Forest, a little boy and his Bear will always be playing.

Tuesday, January 2, 2007

Memento Mori (remember that you are mortal)

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I spend a good portion of my time in the passenger seat of our car. I am not sure why because I do love to drive, but I guess perhaps I have unconsciously slipped into the traditional role (blech) of a wife and now JP does most of the driving. The real reason I suppose I have chosen this seat is the luxury I have of cataloguing our journeys through a photographer’s eye. Frequently my mind wanders as I process the scene around me.

It so happened this way yesterday on a drive back from Peterborough. I was melting in the wonder of a rare, gorgeous, warm January day when my gaze fell upon the miniature shrine that has taken shape in the small space located under the glove compartment. I know I had cleaned it out sometime during the last year since there was not a lot there, but I was also surprised to see how relatively uncluttered it had remained given my penchant for chaos. I began to think about the things that people collect along the path they take.

The butterfly I found in a Tim Horton’s parking lot on the way back from a camping trip to Lake Erie. The shell came from a beach on Lake Huron near Forest Ontario. The pennies came from who knows where, but obviously due to their location in the shrine THEY ARE NOT the same as the pennies that collect next to the gear shift. The rose came from JP’s aunt’s funeral that I meant to give to his mom but have forgotten to so far. The last addition was from this New Year’s Eve party where we did the bleigiessen so popular in Austria. My little melted lead piece came out looking like a human heart, indicating that I will open up and meet people, who will enrich my life. Interesting fortune for the year!

And so I clear out my memento mori with the fresh start of the year. The little shrine space is ready for the next adventure.

Monday, January 1, 2007

About Fortunes...

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As the lights of the holidays start to fade into our memories, I am confronted, as many people are, to take stock. Champagne corks pop and Auld Lang Syne is sung and we are all given a clean slate. People talk about their plans for what they hope to better about themselves in the coming year without any real concrete plans as to how to execute their resolutions. This year I am taking on this project. 365 photographs, one for each day in an effort to exercise my creative muscle. 365 photographs that have never been seen before.