Spring on Easter Day :: Journée printanière pour Pâques

Easter day could not have been any better… had brunch with my family at the Willows Inn, and had the most spectacular views of the Lake of Two Mountains and the church in Oka. We had a beautiful sunny spring day, the snow is melting fast and the brooke on our lot is flowing fast. Here is a beautiful orchid specimen.

J’ai eu le temps de peindre ce beau spécimen d’orchidée en cette belle journée de Pâques. La neige fond vite, les oiseaux gargouillent et le ruisseau coule à fond. Vive le printemps!

Colours: Aureolin Yellow, New Gambodge, Windor Red, French Ultramarine
Moleskine Watercolor Notebook



Painting is a daily exercise… like any form of physical or mental discipline. Playing a musical instrument, singing, swimming or simply getting in shape takes a daily dose of exercise. This was painted on the Route 201 looking north, at the St. Polycarpe Junction. The snow is melting… hallelujah!

Colours: French Ultramarine, New Gambodge, Rose Madder Geniune, Burnt Umber
Ink: Noodlers Lexington Grey
Pen: Pilot Flexigrip
Moleskine Watercolor Notebook


Three Chinese Symbols :: Trois symboles chinois

About 18 Montreal Urban Sketchers met at Restaurant Kam Fung on St. Urbain street this morning for a Dim Sun breakfast and sketch at the same time. Quite cool! While I was painting a chinese lady looked over my shoulder to tell me that if I drew these symbols, I had to draw the three of them together and not leave one of them out. So I heeded her advice, and painted all three — the rooster, the dragon and the Prosperity or Happiness symbol (not sure).

Nous étions 18 à se rencontrer pour déjeuner ce matin au Restaurant Kam Fung sur St-Urbain pour faire des croquis ou peindre et en mangeant des Dim Sun… bien amusant! Une femme chinoise a regardé par-dessus mon épaule pour me dire que mon dessin n’était pas correct et que je devais peindre les trois symboles ensembles et non séparément (comme j’étais en train de le faire). Je l’ai écoutée ;-) Voici le coq, le dragon et je crois le symbole pour la Prospérité ou le Bonheur… pas sûre.


Car with a view :: Automobile avec vue

I was trying to find a place to sketch today in my car, and everywhere that I turned there was just too many cars… thus unsafe to park on the side of the road. So I turned on St. Guillaume in Ste. Marthe to find a place where I could turn around… and when I did, this was the view that I had.

J’essayais de trouver un endroit pour me stationner aujourd’hui mais il y avait beaucoup d’automobiles sur le 201. Donc j’ai pris le chemin St-Guillaume en espérant de trouver une entrée pour revenir sur mes pas… et voici la vue.

:: Sunday Urban Sketching :: 

We are meeting tomorrow morning, March 24,  for 10 am at Restaurant Kam Fung, on the 2nd floor at 1111, rue St. Urbain on the corner of St. Urbain and René Lévesque. We will have a dim sum breakfast and sketch at the same time — or sketch outside in the Chinese quarters if preferred.

Demain matin à 10 heures on se rencontre au Restaurant Kam Fung, situé au 2e étage au 1111, rue St-Urbain — coin St. Urbain et René Lévesque. On va déjeuner en faisant des croquis ou pour les aventuriers, descendre dans le quartier chinois.


Old House on Harwood Road, Hudson :: Vieille maison sur le chemin Harwood, Hudson

A very old house on Harwood Road in Hudson. There is a fine line between putting in too much detail (like in this painting) and just the right amount. I find that I am drawing more than painting… do you remember a few weeks back when I mentioned that I was painting too much and not drawing enough? LOL ;-) Must be the painter’s lament…

Une très vieille maison sur le chemin Harwood à Hudson. Il y a une fine ligne entre trop dessiné et ne pas assez peindre… et voici un bon exemple. J’ai mis trop de détails à la plume dans cette peinture. Est-ce que vous vous rappelez qu’il y a une couple de semaines que je disais que je ne dessinais pas assez? LOL ;-) Doit être le sort du peintre…

Colours: Indigo, Raw Sienna, Burnt Umber, Burnt Orange, Manganese Blue
Ink: Carbon Black
Pen: Pilot Flexigrip
Moleskine Watercolor Notebook



Gentle Giants

My painting surely reflects the environment in which I live… added to this is the love that I have for all trees, shrubs, creepy crawlers, moss, and everything in between and beyond. So let me introduce to you the majestic Eastern Pine and its accolade. These are gentle giants as they hover above our heads and protect us from downpours, high winds, and they are home to all of the critters and mammals. In the spring their sugary sap starts running, their cones scent the entrance to the house and its scented needles cushion the forest floor.

Mes peintures reflètent bien mon environnement dans lequel je vie… et que j’aime tellement. Laissez-moi vous introduire au Pin de l’est, majestueux en soi. Il nous protège des grands vents, filtre la neige qui tombe toute en douceur, en été nous laisse son arôme intense et ses glands collants et tapisse le sol avec ses aiguilles de pin. En plus, les mammifères et les oiseaux de la forêt l’adopte, faisant leur nid dans les trous ou dans le creux de leurs branches. À chaque année on a couple d’hibous qui adopte un de nos pins.

Colours: Indigo, New Gambodge Burnt Umber
Ink: Noodlers Lexington Grey
Pen: Pilot Flexigrip
Moleskine Watercolor Notebook


Sucrerie de la Montagne

For the sap to start flowing in the spring, temperatures have to be just right. Freezing temperatures at night and above zero during the day… so for the past week, the sap has been flowing in this region. The Sucrerie de la Montagne, situated in Rigaud, is open all-year round and tourists from all over the world come in huge buses to have a taste of this golden liquid.

Pour que la sève d’érable coule à flot, les nuits doivent être sous zéro et le jour au-dessus… dans la dernière semaine elle coule bien. La Sucrerie de la Montagne, située à Rigaud, est ouverte à l’année longue et des touristes du monde entier arrivent en gros autobus pour goûter ce sirop doré.

Colours: Indigo, Burnt Orange and Burnt Sienna
Ink: Noodlers Lexington Grey
Pen: Pilot Flexigrip
Moleskine Watercolor Notebook


Sugar Bush Time :: Le temps des sucres est arrivé

My spouse drilled a hole in one of our maple trees this morning, and the sap is running fast. It is officially sugar bush time, and my heart is glad… a very long and cold winter that we have had this year. Today was a very grey day in Rigaud. I did not have to jump in the car today as this is right on my lot and I painted this with some of my favourite colours: New Gambodge, French Ultramarine and Burnt Sienna. These three colours give such a rich diversity of tones… I may have gone a little tipsy over these today. Also, today I started a new Moleskine Sketchbook which I had not used since August as I was working with other sketchbooks and 1/8th size sheets… and I realized today, as I was painting on this wonderful paper, how much that I had missed it. It felt like coming home to something that you love.

Mon conjoint a drillé un trou dans un de nos érables et l’eau de sucre coule à flot dans la chaudière. Mon coeur est très content car l’hiver a été long avec beaucoup de neige et de froid. Quand l’eau coule, le printemps est à nos portes. J’ai utilisé mes couleurs préférées: New GambodgeFrench Ultramarine et Burnt Sienna. Le mélange de ces trois couleurs donne des tons riches et lumineux en même temps. J’ai aussi commencé un autre carnet Moleskine car depuis août passé j’expérimentais avec d’autres carnets et papiers, et c’est tellement exquis de peindre sur un papier qu’on aime.

Ink: Noodlers Lexington Grey
Pen: Pilot Flexigrip
Moleskine Watercolor Notebook



Mont Calvaire Mountain

This is the type of scene that is the most difficult for me as it has no real lines to follow and is very vague. To add to this is that the minute that I paint/draw these scenes, they seem to have zoomed in as though they were less far then they actually are. Humm. So I had to paint two to get one that was satisfactory. The bottom one was my first one and the top one was the later one… which one do you prefer? and why? I must also mention that I have been trying various types of paper in these past few weeks, but the Larolan paper is still exquisite… they should sell full sheets as they would surely sell very wellCalvaire Mountain is one of the mountains that faces the Lake of Two Mountains that flows between Ottawa and Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue. Calvaire is a word that has religious connotations in Québec as it means: calvâsse, calvinsse, calvinouche, calvinus, calvinisse, calverasse. It also means a cross commemorating the Passion of Christ or a succession of ordeals.

Voici le Mont Calvaire peint du chemin Harwood à Vaudreuil-Dorion. Ce style de peinture est ce qui est le plus difficile pour moi…. car il y a très peu de lignes. Avez-vous remarqué que la première peinture semble être plus près que la deuxième? J’ai mis plus de détails dans la première peinture, donc ceci donne l’illustion qu’elle est plus proche.

Paper: Larolan Sketchbook
Pen: Pilot Flexi Grip
Ink: Noodlers Lexington Grey