My studio is a tiny custom-built, bright shed in the garden of my small North Vancouver home.
I love my space. I walk up the steps with cell phone, laptop and coffee in hand. The heater is on. CBC chatter joins me. I sit down in my chair and breathe in the studio.
Usually I tidy-up a little. Look at what I’m working on. Or, I approach the blank canvass—if I’m ready to start something new. I don’t hesitate. I once spent 15 minutes with the late, wonderful artist Robert Genn and he said “Go to your room.” That’s the gist of it. As an artist, you just have to do it. And I do. I love going to my room.
While I paint, my dear pal Zoe is often under my feet, literally.
Or, she lazes in the sun on the doorstep. She’s a great companion. I don’t mind if the phone rings. I’m not thrown off. It’s usually a lovely chat with a friend and the chance to pause, get more coffee.
I paint from photographs. Some I’ve taken on my travels. Others shared by friends, or people in communities where I love the landscape and the architecture; silver birch trees, old buildings and Ontario snow. My paintings are my interpretation of what I see and feel.
I’ll say as I paint “It’s come alive!” Of course, there are the times when next I say “Oh shit, it’s gone.” That can happen. I’ll back up and sit for a while. I might take the painting home and let it be with me for a few days. I’ll look and wait. I usually discover what to do next; to bring it alive again.