Reject Not at First Glance : Stained Glass Church Art

Two decades ago, I tossed out my 30-lb. stained glass artwork into the garbage a few years after I finished two stained glass art courses.  I dubbed the art piece, “Spring Thaw”. “Spring Thaw” was hoisted out into the garbage room,  because I thought it was unworthy of transporting 4,000 km. in moving  to Vancouver from Toronto.  Yes, it was…

Small and Suave: Dijon Lures with Charm and Wonder

If North American urbanites could have cosy, yet sophisticated and relaxed cities like Dijon, France, we would all be happier and healthier. Timeless, Relaxed Elegance Dijon is like a timeless elegant lady, yet sitting relaxed in a polished, antique chair. She wears a silk blouse with a pair of worn jeans and stylish deep red…

Creative Alchemy of Making Unfettered Art. Part 1 – Visual Art

One of the glass barriers I want to shatter every time when creating art, is my own inhibitions. That blank canvas, tabula rasa, that snow-white endless blank computer screen or empty writing page either begs an artistic watermark or taunts me to sully its virginal purity. Making Art, Take a Risk of Falling Last year, a blogger-writer and…

Easy-Peasy or Daunting: Getting to Local Art and Attractions by Bike, Foot, Transit

A long while ago, I was  volunteer blogger for Tourism Vancouver’s blog, Inside Vancouver.  My special self-chosen niche, was flogging outdoor Vancouver attractions, reachable by bike, foot or transit. So I zoomed into fabulous outdoor art, parks and scenic vistas.  Metro Vancouver is abundant with an array of  jaw-dropping scenery, galleries and historic sites clustered…

Balancing Between Active and Brain-Based: Your Passions For Life

Awhile ago, I wrote a blog post on discovering your favourite exercise, a sport or your physical activity that dovetails neatly into your lifestyle and personality. A sure bet you will want to take up that exercise several times per week for health, fun and for a long time. Brain-Based Passions Well, at the other…

Mountain Leaf and Light Dancing

Art and poetry are mere light and colour shadows, whisper-thin metaphors of Nature.  Here are some paintings and haiku I fashioned. Windswept leaves flung Down mountain, spin freewheelin’ Water cradles home. Translucent layers Fold a mountain range,  Copper-flames burnish gently. Glory gold glitter Rustles stories and dream-light Cast a fairy spell.

Paint My Heart in Autumn Red-Gold and Orange

So far, there’s only one painting I’ve done, stoked by warm memories of Ontario’s stunning autumn leaf colour.  Swaths of flaming orange, red and gold paint forests, in parks and trees along streets and attract many walkers, cyclists and  car trip drivers.  While Vancouver, BC maps cherry blossom viewing locations every spring,  in autumn, Ontario…

Crafting My Personal Blogger Infographic

After stumbling across Piktochart and free template, I cobbled my first personal blogger infographic. Clearly I am behind:  I didn’t know resumes could be dolled up as an infographic. Here’s more information than you’ll ever need.  I spent too much time having fun. You might have to increase your Screen View to 125 – 150% to read this…

Cycling Fires My Five Senses, Inspiration

While I was blissed out during a wonderful Christmas  baroque music concert, it suddenly dawned on me why I bicycle day after day. Year after year.  The frenzied violinists with half closed eyes in their  Zen trance while teasing music from their strings,  was akin to cycling as a great sensory experience. Cycling –An Easier Sensory Journey Cycling is…

Prairie’s Declaration of Horse Love in Art

Alberta loves to trot out its love for horses in visual art, equestrian arts and competition, as well as rodeo events. It wasn’t until I moved to  Calgary in the prairies, where I’ve met more ordinary folks in this Canadian region,  than Toronto or Vancouver, who have family members that own and ride at least…

Salmon Art Leaps Into Pacific West Coast Imagination

Salmon is king in Vancouver  –in local cuisine and in art.  After a few days wandering in the city or anywhere along the coast of British Columbia, you are bound to stumble across salmon swishing through water or jumping up in sculpture, murals or mosaics.  Salmon iconography is in Salish coastal Indian art, outdoor contemporary…

Hanging Onto My Broken Mother Tongue

It may be weird, but I don’t even know Chinese words for “please” or “good-bye” .  Yet I dutifully check off Chinese, as my mother tongue on Canada’s census form.  Am I delusional about my own Chinese fluency? Does that mean I come from a rude, brusque family? Meh.  Maybe.  Each family has their own…

More than Just Dragons- Art on Chinese-Canadian Experience

Don’t get me wrong: I love dragons. A dragon pops up often enough:  whenever there is a celebration or poster flogging a Canadian Chinatown event or something involving Chinese-Canadian history or culture. I love the dragon for its aesthetic drawing power –in parades, dance, paintings, textiles, rugs, sculpture and jewellery. Dragons in Canada- Convenient Icon? However, I…

Halloween Night of Super Heroines and Feminist Beginnings

My Halloween night was about comic super heroines and feminism. Oddly it made me reflect on what stoked my awareness of feminism –real people and popular culture. Celebration of Friendly Feminist Past Ghosts: Heroines and TV Characters Out of curiosity, I went to fundraising event, Take Back Halloween, hosted by a theatre group. Urban Curvz for a…

A Shimmer of Watery Flower Dreams

Cycle Write blog serves as my memoir tablet of things I’ve seen, things I’ve done and things I dream now and later. This mixed media painting, A Shimmer of Watery Flower Dreams, is both art and a memory fragment.  It’s art done and gone because I have given away this piece as a gift, to a family member. Yes, this painting…

Rising with Community Gardens: Three Cities

Vancouver’s Sole Foods: Bringing Back Dignity and Purpose to Emptiness  Last year, a large dreary parking lot in downtown Vancouver was transformed with rows of bright green vegetables under the shadow of B.C. Stadium, elevated light rail viaduct and condo towers.  It didn’t take long for rich green leaves to unfurl and cover part of the…

Blogging is Painting My Story Robe

The Blackfoot Indians in the prairies passed on their history and collective memory through storytelling and in pictographs. Painted images on tanned buffalo leather hide are called story robes. Occasionally they painted stories on tipi covers, blankets and rocks too. Blogging is our 21st century painting and wearing our story robe. When I began blogging,…

Chameleon Art: Art That Teases Imagination

This blog post will not be a violin whine of apologist on abstract art or non-representational art. No, I just want to show you how to see this art in new light — several different ways. Before I took several art courses on mixed media painting art at mid-life, I didn’t have much appetite for abstract art….

Post-Flood: Art and Memory Along the Bow River, Calgary

Do you ever blog, write, paint or photograph something that you saw but know it will disappear forever? That your act of solidifying its image, is to brand it alive in your memory and heart for years to come? I’ve been feeling this way lately. Several weeks ago, a major flood in Calgary destroyed several hundred…