Saturday, January 28, 2012

The philosopher’s diet

This book, written by a Cartesian, is a treatise on how to lose weight. He provides a recipe for muffins – a strict regime of one large muffin or two small ones per day plus jogging will do it. 
Why do we care about losing weight? It’s the division of mind body, the mind body split – the mind tends to loathe an excess of flesh. Not me!
Richard Watson wrote this book when it was still fashionable to believe that oat-bran  would save the world, i.e. human kind. Since then that theory has bit the dust and the price of oat bran has come down.

 man resting,  pastel on Ingres 18"x24"

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Today’s outing

Today’s poses were a bit convoluted whereby I dove in sleepy eyed and surfaced gasping for air - no sleep walking today,  keeps one on one's toes. 

click to enlarge

chalk on strathmore 18"x24"

chalk on strathmore

charcoal on cartridge 18"x24"

chalk on manilla 18"x24"

Wednesday, January 18, 2012


An exciting moment. - today on our walk along Locke St. to the harbour, two young women, not Hamiltonians,  approached us for directions - "McGill  street off of Cannon?
I knew precisely where to direct them and they showered us with gratitude. 
One of the women was from Wynyard Saskatchewan! What a thrill – Never in my entire life had I met someone from Wynyard. I asked her if she’d heard of Elfros and Wadena. Of course she had! I explained briefly that when I was a little girl, my father was the doctor in Elfros, an Icelandic village. Because it had no hospital, he admitted some of his patients either to the hospital in Wynyard or to the one in Wadena. Sometimes I’d go with him on his evening rounds to either of these two towns. Dirt roads back then. On rare and wondrous occasions I'd be allowed potato chips but then cautioned that they really weren't good for me.

And what were these two, very young women doing in Hamilton? They were on a tour giving motivational talks to high school students, and then on to New Brunswick where they’d finish off their tour and fly back west – one to Wynyard, the other  home to a place about nine hours north of Vancouver.

A view from the cat walk at Siemens  from  a year ago. 
The factory closed down in July. oil on pre gessoed panel 

Monday, January 16, 2012


My  portrait of a dear friend,  Richard Lubbock, who sat for me in Toronto some years ago. I met him shortly after he arrived  from England. He had a walloping, dry sense of humour. For years he worked at CBC as a writer and also wrote for a publication,  The Idler which which no longer exists,  which took its name from a pub where a bunch of them used to meet weekly. When he sat for me we had lovely, heated debates on politics - we always agreed to disagree – Richard loved that – we both did, generally coming to a draw.   

ciment fondu

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

One, two, three….

Three goes at it
First time back at James N in a long while,  a poon's age. (poons or coons are large prehistoric animals disguised as trees which don’t do well at skiing steep downward slopes – crosshill maybe)
Tea cookies and a Clementine and a dandy reclining pose. Also some new people joined us and familiar faces were a joy to behold.

 charcoal and pastel on strathmore 18"x24"

charcoal on manilla 18"x24"

 charcoal and pastel on strathmore 18"x24"

Sunday, January 8, 2012

The fine tuning and maintenance of obscure, tricky equations and unfinished thoughts

While not everyone might  be considered equally unimportant, by the same token not everyone can be considered equally unfortunate. When we’re all equally fortunate than  true equality might be conceivable.
A variation on this might be Camus' conjecture  that only when we were all slaves might true freedom or true democracy exist - but I can’t put my finger on the exact wording of his quote.

click to enlarge

the watering of the unwatered plant

reclining figure, chalk on manilla Jan. 2011

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Two - Not so new, sitting down for the new year

This patient model dozed for an hour at a stretch without altering her position an inch while we scratched away at our drawing. All the while she possessed a certain serenity or calm which I might want to emulate in 2012.  Fat chance! Just being realistic.
click to enlarge

carbon pencil on Ingres 2009

another model on kraft paper, 30 min pose 2008