I had this awesome grade 3 teacher named Mrs. Parkins. She was from England, and I'm not sure how long she had lived in Canada up until that point, but she had a lovely English accent that was PERFECT for reading stories to kids....especially me. I remember she had this bit of red shag carpeting that she would get us to sit on when she read to us. It was my favorite part of the day. She intoned her voice just right and I think she genuinely liked the stories she was reading to us. (I'm pretty sure the stories were her choice, but what do I know...I was about 7 or 8 at the time.) I like when someone has an interesting tattoo, a lovely jacket, neat hat or something I notice and then they begin telling me the story about how it came into their possession. I was thinking about this today because I'm sending a Christmas care package to a friend out east. It's nothing that she needs really, but I have a lot of fun sending her these because of the notes that I include with each of the little presents....because there is a little story for her that goes with each one.

"ash on fire" mixed media on canvas, 10" x 10" SOLD

This is one of the housewarming presents I was working on for a friend at work. It was a bit overdue mostly because it got usurped by some more immediate projects...but I finally finished it, so it's not doubling up as a Christmas present. It's from a photo I took about 5 years ago while going for a long walk in the fall with Gershwin. I took a lot of photos that day because the colors were so wonderful. It's a close up of a mountain ash in it's red/gold autumnal splendor. It's fun to paint trees and buildings and get lost in the textures and little details without worrying if it looks 'right' or close to the photo at all. I was very pleased with how this one turned out. I think it would be marvelous to begin some mixed media landscapes....and do an entire show about trees and the moods they can create....everything from light filtering in and looking like an elven forest from Lord of the Rings to dark and moody forests that make you want to look for a trail of breadcrumbs and listening for wandering children.

Speaking of wandering....I think it's time to wander back to my book and then bed.