Three for one :: Trois pour un

“A friend,” wrote the poet and philosopher John O’Donohue in his beautiful meditation on the Ancient Celtic notion of anam cara, “awakens your life in order to free the wild possibilities within you.”
— Brain Pickings

My first love has to be drawing and if I decide to paint, without drawing first, the downhill trend is quite steep and abrupt, I lose all faculties for pressing onwards and I get all mixed up — really do not know where to put the paints. However, if I draw first, it grounds me and then I can actually do what I want, without the fear of ruining the drawing or painting. Funny huh? This drawing is a triple bonus because the two pots that hold the cactus were created by me during a pottery workshop in Hemmingford that I followed with one of my very good friends a few weeks ago. It is quite surprising that the pots fit perfectly one into the other as it had not been intended that way…  I was pleasantly surprised! One of my friends has organized a small communal painting/drawing event where we each paint/draw three paintings in a sketchbook and then pass on to another artist. I am the second one in the list, and I will be passing it on to France in a week or so. I do not know yet if I will paint it or not… another joy of drawing first. I have the choice. So nice -)

This little cactus has grown quite a bit, and it is close to my heart as it was given to all guests for an event that my little niece had organized. I will not see her as much now as recent family events are looming over chances of meeting up. Still… it is close to my heart, as she is. Today Canada geese were flying over my house, in beautiful amazing triangles, honking high and loud and announcing to everyone that cared to listen that Spring has arrived.. our beautiful harbingers of Spring.

Paper: Handbook created by my friend Chi Mai
Fountain Pen: Sailor Desk fountain pen
Ink: De Atrementis Document Ink Black
Location: Rigaud, Québec, Canada

Cactus Plant

Cactus Plant

St. Marthe Sunset :: Soleil couchant à Ste-Marthe

Today I rushed out of the house at 3:45 pm to catch the Ste. Marthe sunset… and in the end it was too dark in the car to keep on going, so I had to finish this painting in the house, where it is warm. This little village stands on a steep hill overlooking the Quebec scenery, and we can actually see the peak of Lyon Moutain in Vermont, USA (quite far away). It has a population of about 1000 residents, and was founded in 1855.

Today I followed Raynald’s advice, and drew from scratch with my fountain pen (instead of doing it first in lead). It was quite liberating, took less time and my pen stroke was not hesitant–it got going, without looking back–and I drew very fast! When I draw with a pencil, my pencil line often hesitates, stops, ponders and then gets going again at a very slow pace…. I think that he is right.

Aujourd’hui je suis sortie vite de la maison pour aller peindre le coucher de soleil de Ste-Marthe, petit village de 1000 résidents juché sur le haut de la montagne et ayant un point de vue saisissant. Nous pouvons voir le sommet de Lyon Mountain aux États-Unis.

Raynald m’a conseillé d’essayer de peindre directement avec ma plume au lieu de commencer avec un crayon. Et vous auriez dû voir, c’était quelque chose! La plume semblait avoir une vie, elle allait très vite et n’hésitait pas du tout. Tout le contraire de travailler au crayon. Quand je dessine au crayon, mon trait prend son temps, hésite, peut se faire effacer, et reprend son petit bout de chemin, arrêtant de temps en temps. Aujourd’hui la plume déambulait sur le papier, aucune hésitation. C’était vraiment trop cool à voir ;-) Raynald, tu as raison!

Paper: Larolan Watercolour Sketchbook
Watercolours: Winsor & Newton and Daniel Smith
Colors: Cobalt blue, Aureolin Yellow, Burnt Orange, Burnst Sienna and Alizarin Crimson
Pen: Pilot Flexi Grip Fountain Pen EF
Ink: Noodlers Lexington Grey

20130102_SteMarthe

Wing Chair

Everyone should have a wing chair to read in… they are wonderful. So here is part of my living room, drawn quickly last night. It took about 20 minutes. There is a liberty, a spontaneity and a freshness that happens when we draw quickly that cannot be imitated by drawing slowly. So here is a bit of a speed drawing… well for me at least, as I am sure that some people would call my drawing speed a tad slow (chuckle). I ordered some Noodler’s Lexington Gray Ink today and I can’t wait to test it out… it will make these type of drawings softer looking.

Voici mon salon et ma chaise de lecture. Des fois un dessin vite fait donne un résultat plus libre et frais que des dessins qui sont pensés, réfléchis longtemps à l’avance… une certaine spontanéité. Aujourd’hui j’ai commandé de l’encre Noodler’s Lexington Gray que j’ai hâte d’essayer avec ce type de dessin.

Paper: Small Moleskine Sketchbook
Fountain Pen: Carbon Pen with Black Carbon Ink