Bird’s Eye View

Pen & ink, 10 x 14

Pen & ink, 10 x 14

This is my first mandala of 2014. It’s called Bird’s Eye View. It was snowing steadily all day today. Even though it was a fairly warm day in comparison to recent days, I couldn’t bring myself to walk to the art store for more canvas. Instead, I spent the afternoon drawing at the dining table.

Recently, I’ve been watching a documentary series called Through the Wormhole. One episode  I saw last week looked at near death experiences. In that episode, there was a snippet of footage of a butterfly flying through a forest. Since then the idea of flying with an animals eyes has stuck with me. One of the ideas discussed involved the notion that at the moment of death, our minds might latch on to the consciousness of other being in a quantum like transfer of awareness. That’s the best way I can restate it – non technical as I am.

This mandala explores that idea – of reaching out beyond human form and seeing life through another’s eyes.

Hope you enjoy the mandala, and as always thanks for being interested in my work.

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Undulating Memory

24 x 24 acrylic on canvas

24 x 24 acrylic on canvas

I finished this piece last night. My previous post ‘Lost’ was inspired by this canvas. Since writing that post the canvas has been at least 2 other beginnings of very different paintings. The same major undulations however remained throughout. In this piece I used a range of colours I haven’t tried before. It took a while to figure out how they made me feel and how they’d fit in. I haven’t painted much with browns before so that was one thing I wanted to do when I started out. In the beginning the lilac tones were a happy accident and when I realized they worked with the browns it changed the whole piece.

It took a little while to realize where the piece was going. I was walking to work yesterday morning and looking at birds flying far off against the colour of the sky when it hit me that this piece was an abstract landscape.

While doing this piece my boyfriend said that I should try having a few canvases stretched and ready to go in the studio so that when I get frustrated and lost on one canvas I can just move on to another without majorly changing what I’ve started. I suppose that would take the pressure off the one canvas so I’ll see if that works.

Union

This piece was done with thoughts of two of my friends who are getting married this spring. The piece is composed of two framed mandalas. Each reflects the other and are bound together by the spirit of the bird. It’s a story about the love and union of two separate and beautiful souls.

Union, pen & ink on paper

Union, pen & ink on paper

Corvus

In this post you will see 3 pictures of the stages of this piece. I’ve been working on it since my last post.

This piece was a step in a new direction for me. I would like to try some more like this, which bring together portrait and abstract. I spent a lot of time staring at this piece at its different stages. In fact for days, I would stare at this piece from different angles in my room and squint at it until I began developing a kind of fear of working on it. I was intimidated by the permanence of ink on paper and also unsure of where I was going with it. On Thursday or Friday I had had enough of this starting match and decided what I needed was some more pen weights and shades. So, on Friday I went to the Waterloo Art Store and got a few Tria Pantone markers and various pen weights including a 005 Micron which I love and remember from my hand drafting days in school.

If you have read my other entry on this blog called Crow you will know that my neighborhood is currently home to a very large flock of crows. Yup they’re still here. It’s probably because of our lack of actual winter. I guess they’ve kind of stuck in my head and I see them wherever I go. The other night I was walking back from the grocery and I looked up at the tree tops and there were so many of them nestled on the bare branches, a slightly darker shade of black against the sky. So I guess the piece comes out of that experience and my general fascination with them. They’re very intelligent birds and I playfully think of them as a bit more sentient than the average bird. Check out this link if you want to hear more about The Intelligence of Crows by Joshua Klein.

As always, thanks for your interest in my work.

Final Piece

Step 2

Crow

There is something going on with the crows in this neighborhood. You don’t expect to hear or see birds in the winter, but there is a really large flock of them living in the trees around here. The flock covers the bare branches like some strange fruit. I like the sound of them though and they’re kind of fascinating, especially as I’ve never seen so many at once. 

This mandala came to me all in one go when I was sketching the other night. I had the idea in my sketchbook for a few days before I put it on paper and then I drew it all in one night. I think that it is one of my favorites so far. I didn’t really intend on it being a crow. I’ve called it Crow more because I spent a little time this afternoon taking pictures of them in the trees.

The photo at the bottom is one of the pictures I took. The birds cover more trees than the ones shown in the photo, just to give you an impression of how bizarre it is to see so many of them.

 

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