november november....holy crap, it's november!

I have now been back from Toronto approximately 12 hours. My last trip of the year. It was.....a very stormy time. We were on the very outskirts of Superstorm Sandy. We got wind, sideways rain, 4 degrees and lost power in my Aunt's apartment for about 2 days. The turbulence on the way there and back was not a lot of fun....but other than that the trip was fantastic. I had lots of opportunity to sketch and relax and even hit up a few of the cafes and eateries some of my friends recommended. So here are the sketches in order of sketchiness:

this sketch has nothing to do with my trip to Toronto. this is a sketch of my friend Ron's wood burning stove. it's a reminder to me that one day i will have my OWN wood burning stove....and then i won't need to be jealous of his...whenever he mentions it.

i realized that i haven't done many drawings IN planes. i've worked on drawings while in the plane....but haven't made a sketch of the plane i'm in. and so i did. this was before the terrible turbulence on the way to toronto.

from roncesvalles to high park via high park boulevard. the houses along this street are so lovely. i took many, many pictures of houses and leaf strewn streets. there will be many paintings of such.

i am still floored by the large maple trees. i'm not really sure why....maybe it's the color or maybe because they are so rare in alberta. whatever it is, they are just delightful to draw!

from a morning spent sketching in high park. i had a lovely picnic table all to myself before the weather turned bad. there were leaves in my hair and lazily skimming the pages of my sketchbook. maple leaves. oak leaves. i was grinning stupidly like a kid at christmas. you couldn't have wiped that smile from my face that morning if you tried.

a two-pager of jack pines i spotted on my way out of high park. conveniently there were some tall recycle bins beside the curb that served as a table top to put my sketchbook on and draw.

my travel companion on the morning of sketching. the ONLY morning the weather co-operated with my outside sketchy endeavors.

it was the most picturesque fall that toronto has had in a long time i guess. the color on the trees was lovely, and the streets, sidewalks and gutters were just covered. i may have walked along most of the streets happily kicking leaves into the air. maybe. you'll never know for weren't there.

i ducked into my favorite cafe on roncesvalles just as the rain started getting really bad. the car, the leaves on the little maple and the milk crate on the back of the bicycle were really the only red things in the scene before me. there are also passing traffic ghosts in this sketch. it's my favorite of the whole trip!

i was inspired to draw a self portrait in my travel sketchbook by all the portraits i saw in the frida kahlo & diego rivera exhibit i saw at the AGO. the handiest thing i had to capture my reflection was the dark screen of my phone. so i drew a 'phonograph'.

Now I'm home, and winter is actually here and I'm all unpacked and already back at work at the cafe. I can't believe it's November already. Time to start taking the vitamin D I don't succumb to the fatigue that accompanies the dwindling daylight. It's good to be home!

Oh yea....and I got all my hair cut off today. Such an eventful couple of's time for some quality time with my studio. Stay warm friends!