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Monthly Archives: May 2015

Putting Pencil to Paper

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One never knows where an innocent comment might lead. A group on Ravlery were discussing the possibility of one of us returning to school to study art and she said that she couldn’t draw. Well, one thing led to another and somehow we had set a date for the group to do some drawing and post their results. Several of our group have degrees in art and we thought it would be a great way to get some constructive criticism. For some of us though, this presented a bit of a dilemma. While I love to draw, I have mixed feelings about it. I practically have to be dragged kicking and screaming to the page. I don’t know why. I’ve always been like this. Once I begin, or rather after the first few awkward moments pass, I am totally absorbed in what I’m doing, usually to the exclusion of the rest of the planet. But the effort required to get me there is, frankly, quite ridiculous.

I dragged my feet until Sunday evening, when I decided to show that sketchbook who was boss. Really, it was staring at me from across the room, mocking my attempts to avoid it. I found a pretty spindle and set it up with some interesting lighting, and grabbed the book and my pencils. Within a few minutes, I was in another world.IMG_0427Not bad, considering I haven’t put graphite to the page in just over two years. I just realized that the photo above doesn’t give an accurate representation of placement on the page. My art teacher in Budapest would be aghast! Let me fix that:IMG_0428My mind whirled for ages, thinking of all the things I could draw. But I’m trying to go at this slowly. I don’t sketch. For some strange reason, I seem incapable of rendering something quickly and stopping there. Something to work on. In the meantime, I’m having fun going through my art supplies and paper, dreaming of all the fun things I can do this summer. Thanks, ladies.

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What Gives, Mother Nature?

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What the heck happened to Spring? I mean, less than a month ago, there was still snow on the ground. Yes, the 20-22°C temperatures last weekend were most welcome, as was the sunshine. There were outside chores to do, lawns to rake, and a barbeque to enjoy. Things have been getting green and the leaves are finally unfurling on many trees. Our landlord arranged to have the backyard pool opened on Monday, though there has been a delay due to a cracked pipe (we think). The crabapple trees in front of our house have gone from looking like dead sticks to this in the space of one week:

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But it has steadily gotten warmer all week, to the point of being uncomfortable. While 28°C was pleasant enough yesterday, stop already! Today our expected high is 31° and with that comes a humidex in the mid-thirties and an official heat advisory warning. We aren’t equipped for that, Mother Nature! Not yet!

There is, however, a bonus to the quick advent of summer. My bike has been released from the clutches of the indoor trainer, had a tune-up, and hit the trails yesterday afternoon for an inaugural ride. Ottawa is blessed with all sorts of bicycle trails within the city, many of which lead to those along the Ottawa River. You can even head over the bridge into Québec and the Gatineau Hills. I am so looking forward to packing up a picnic lunch and heading out for a day-long adventure. In the meantime, I think I need to practice some hills.

What fun things are you doing now that the warmer weather has arrived?