almost spring (but not really)

At least, it feels like it here in Edmonton at any rate. The daylight hours are lengthening slowly, the air is warmer, the birds are crazy and it's treacherous as fuck out for walking or running. It's fake spring here. An evening of rain followed by a few ridiculously warm days. I just hope it melts long enough to clear up all the ice before it Mother Nature remembers what month it is and hits us with a second helping of winter.

How quickly a year goes by, speaking of real spring. I came home early from the cafe, my insides unsure of whether they wanted to be my outsides or not. I crawled back into bed and after a heavy two hour nap and a bit of food, it was time for some kind of quiet activity to take my mind off my uncooperative insides. Hooray for a studio in the house! I picked away at sections of this piece all afternoon until it was finished.

 the italian garden at the butchart gardens, victoria bc, mixed media on canvas, 16x16, 2016

the italian garden at the butchart gardens, victoria bc, mixed media on canvas, 16x16, 2016

I remember this day vividly. We were there last spring, Jason and I. We were driven to the gardens and accompanied by a friend we had made a few days before. It was overcast when we got there and pouring by the time we left. Typical Vancouver Island weather in April. It started spitting mid-way through our wanderings and was coming down pretty decently when we came to the Italian garden. There was a group of Asian tourists who came prepared for rain. Some had those neat clear umbrellas, and some had these lovely bright blue ones. I was dawdling something fierce, switching between my phone camera and my Instax camera, trying to draw flowers under the shelter of trees and finally giving up because it was too wet., trying not to fall too behind Jason, or make him wait too long for me. Our new friend was hiding in the gift shop after it started really coming down. We were on our way there too, but then the umbrellas bloomed. I followed them looking as inconspicuous as I could in a my loud pink rain coat, phone camera pointed right at them. I got a few funny looks, and quickly pretended to be more interested in whatever flowers were nearest to me. My patience and stealthiness paid off! I got some great shots of umbrella-ed visitors in the gorgeous rainy garden. I can almost smell the hyacinths when I look at this piece. They were so fragrant that day. In April! Island life is something else. Five months of spring, lucky bastards. All that color. Glorious!

This piece I finished the other night.

 freezing rain, graphite + watercolor + pastel + acrylic on paper, 22x30, 2016

freezing rain, graphite + watercolor + pastel + acrylic on paper, 22x30, 2016

It's one of two abstract experiments on paper. I worked on it while it was pouring the other night. It's and odd thing to hear rain beat against the awnings of our living room window in January.

Both pieces are heading to the cafes tomorrow. The abstract piece will be hung in Transcend Garneau along with the rest of my abstract series, 'the delicate winter'. The Butchart Garden piece will live in the front entrance way of Transcend Argyll.

Keep the parkas handy. Happy Thursday.