Early readings & Art influences
and a bit of other art stuff..
I was reflecting today on my love of comic books and reading in general as a child . The bookmobile that initially visited our community in the early 60’s was a dream come true. I could not believe that it was possible to select and walk away with books to read and enjoy at home for a week or two.
From the Toronto North york public library archives
I painstakingly taught myself to read by selecting a book without pictures on a topic I was interested in -North American Indigenous people (most likely written by a non Indigenous author and wildly biased and inappropriate - As were the times ..!) I borrowed this book in grade two from my public school library. I remember selecting it and that it’s cover was orange with a black and white illustration.
The illustrated book that was my all time favourite was The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by CS Lewis. The beautiful black and white illustrations spoke to me and endeared me to the story. I read this book many times.
In grade 5, my elementary school teacher, Mr. Page -(who was a guiding light in so many ways) -encouraged me to spend time on creating an illustrated story/book of my choosing. Although I do not remember the book (other than that I experimented with drawing imaginary people ) I recall the joy in the process.
My choice in comic book reading and collection was the Classics Illustrated series .. I had quite a selection of these comics-definitely a predecessor to graphic novels -and would dive into each gripping story with much fascination and focus ..
In more recent years I was excited to discover graphic novels !
My first ever graphic novel was by artist/ author Craig Thompson who wrote “Blankets” and “Carnet de Voyage “ and many more..
The concept that complex and personal stories could be told through illustration became fascinating..Rather like my reading experience with the old Classic Illustrated I wasn’t restricted to “Archie” or super heroes!
This newsletter from Maple Lam resonated for me today ! Developing interest in history through graphic novels- Maple Lam
I continue to enjoy creating personal cartoon style illustrations and stories aside from my mixed media art and wonder where I will land with this journey . There are always visual stories to tell aren’t there?
Working in Series
One thing I enjoy about working in series is I already have the main idea figured out.
If I get excited about something conceptually then off I go ..
This past week I have been working on a Back Roads series ..with my own rural neighbourhood as my muse .
The November weather has been predictably unpredictable-snowy , chilly with a little warmth today as the sun finally pokes through the clouds . Viewing these roads and walking them every morning with my dog inspires me to offer them as a backdrop to these circular paintings ..
Working or just playing around with themes and subjects in multiples can spark new ideas .is an author and artist illustrator who finds inspiration and creative motivation in making lots of one thing… Check out her post on Lots" of art!
I have also been altering paintings that no longer interest me “as is” I enjoy giving them a new life and look .
“Madeline”. -with ghosts of former painting underneath the surface !
Finally..It’s nice to get noticed sometimes as an artist!
I was super pleased with an interview article in our excellent local cultural magazine called Rampt . Willy Waterton was the photographer and author of this piece and I appreciated his easy going interview style !
I attended a fundraiser for our local Art Gallery (The Tom Thomson Art Gallery ) and it was lovely and affirming being invited as one of two Guest artists at this event . The host has been a loyal patron over the years and it was a delight for me to see my paintings hung in her beautiful home . It was also satisfying for me to have some rich conversations with attendees who appreciate and support art in our community
a large painting of mine from a few years back in our host’s collection
Also it’s nice to notice our other Ageless artists .. Please take a look at my series of artist interviews if you haven’t had a chance in my Artist jet pack newsletter ..
.. Always lovely to have the opportunity to wear magenta tights
Thanks for reading Ageless Artist!