Without a moment to spare and arbutus trees on the ridge

I tell you, sometimes blessings require running shoes and a sweater as one tries to keep up and keep warm to their cool wisps as they streak across the surface of our everyday life. This week shall be met with abandon and somewhat reckless pleasure between the art studio and grandmother duties. Without a doubt, it will be a “yeeeeehaaaaawwww!” kind of week with Thursday being filled with crazy creatures wandering in the night asking for treats.

Of course, the light and shadows will still move unruffled by my daily activities. This 12 x 16 inch oil on canvas landscape which appeared in the studio under my brushes over the weekend reminds me of this.

ARBUTUS ON MT. PARKE

Arbutus on Mt. Park  12 x 16 inch oil on canvas by Terrill Welch 2013_10_26 059

The painting will likely be released sometime next week when I get a moment to put it up. But it is done and I am happy with it as it makes a wonderful grounding reference point for the week ahead. Many Monday blessing to you!

What will be your grounding reference point this week?

P.S. I am keeping a secret that I am just  barely able to keep from telling you! Stay tuned because soon we are in for a real treat and addition to sharing my paintings and photographs.

Also, a notice is up on my website about the online and physical November 9th and 10th Open Studio event ANYTHING BUT NEUTRAL. Do drop by for more information.

© 2013 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

Creative Potager – Visit with painter and photographer Terrill Welch

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

For gallery and purchase information about Terrill’s photographs and paintings go to http://terrillwelchartist.com

August Sunrise in Twelve Captures

The alarm went off at 5:00 am. I looked out and saw that the moon was still shining a path of light through the valley. I almost rolled over and went back to sleep. But I had made a promise to myself so got up and put the kettle on instead. Packing a small breakfast, iPad, thermos of coffee and my camera I slipped quietly out of the house. This is my first shot at sunrise on Reef Bay, Mayne Island in British Columbia, Canada.

JUST BEFORE SIX

Just before six by Terrill Welch 2013_08_22 004

EARLY START

Early Start by Terrill Welch 2013_08_22 042

A BOLD START

A bold start to the day by Terrill Welch 2013_08_22 047

AUGUST SUNRISE REEF BAY MAYNE ISLAND

August Sunrise Reef Bay Mayne Island  by Terrill Welch 2013_08_22 056

WAKING IN AUGUST

Waking in August by Terrill Welch 2013_08_22 065

MORNING

Morning by Terrill Welch 2013_08_22 071

EARLY ARRIVALS

early arrivals by Terrill Welch 2013_08_22 086

HOPEFUL MORNING

Hopeful Morning by Terrill Welch 2013_08_22 092

GULLS AT SUNRISE

Gulls at sunrise by Terrill Welch 2013_08_22 100

AUGUST SUNRISE

August sunrise by Terrill Welch 2013_08_22 139

JOINING

Joining by Terrill Welch 2013_08_22 167

SUN IS UP

Sun is up by Terrill Welch 2013_08_22 217

Digital photography lends itself well to doing a quick series of photography sketches such as I have done with this morning’s sunrise. I liken it to gesture sketches with charcoal. These handheld frames are not the tripod fineness that is associated with material for grand-size photography prints. Instead are the reference images that capture the sensory information for some later painting. These twelve images plus one short video..

If you were going to meet me at sunrise in August what would you bring?

P.S. Today is the last day for the early bird special price on my new calendar with twelve painting images. Please remember to set the start date you would like before ordering the calendar.

The “Wish of a Moment” Calender is available HERE.

© 2013 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

Creative Potager – Visit with painter and photographer Terrill Welch

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

For gallery and purchase information about Terrill’s photographs and paintings go to http://terrillwelchartist.com

 

Tulips on the deck of the Springwater lodge en plein air

Oh! Just look at them! All sassy with their scarlet, tangerine, and soft pink skirts on. These particular tulips are a season favourite here on Mayne Island. I just HAD to paint them. I asked permission to bring easel and paints right to the deck for a painting session. Let’s have a 22 second look and get a good feel for the situation…

So with paint on my cheeks and my tea left to get cold I give it my best.

Tulips Springwater Deck Mayne Island work in progress 20 x 16 inch oil on canvas plein air by Terrill Welch 3013_04_22 067

After about an hour and half,  it is definitely there! Doing a little en plein air dance around the deck. Oops! There are people here. I hadn’t noticed. A few adjustment are going to be needed but this is it for this day.

Back in the studio I work away until I feel it has come together. You see, I really do not get a lot of opportunity to paint with red. I like it but it kind of needs to be approached with respect. I suppose most colours do but red is my stand-back-and give-it-some-room colour. Shall we see what we have?

Tulips Springwater Deck Mayne Island – 20 x 16 inch oil on canvas

Tulips Springwater Deck Mayne Island  20 x 16 inch oil on canvas  by Terrill Welch 3013_04_25 166

Update August 10, 2013: This painting is SOLD to an art collector in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada.

Now I am going to let you in on a little secret. I am working on a much looser more textured experimental version of this same painting in the studio. It is too early to share and it may never be shared but I thought you just might like to know anyway. Red, lots of red and orange. Yum!…. Shhhh! Don’t tell anyone.

What is your stand-back-and give-it-some-room colour?

© 2013 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

Creative Potager – Visit with painter and photographer Terrill Welch

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

For gallery and purchase information about Terrill’s photographs and paintings go to http://terrillwelchartist.com

The treasured Pacific Dogwood or Cornus nuttallii

The Pacific Dogwood or Cornus nuttallii small tree or shrub is protected in British Columbia. It is actually not all that common except in the lower western corner of the Province but has the distinction of being the Provincial flower. I have been admiring one such specimen on Mayne Island for a few years now.

Pacific Dogwood small tree or shrub by Terrill Welch 2013_04_19 067

Isn’t it just grand? The flower or leaf petals are a stunning greenish cream-white. With some rather tame bushwhacking I was able to get up a wee closer so we can have a good study of these beauties.

Pacific Dogwood Cornus nuttallii by Terrill Welch 2013_04_19 083

The actual flower of this plant is the greenish ball in the center. I understand it is suppose to flower spring AND fall but I only seem to notice in the spring. Though the dark red berries are bitter they are the culinary delight of pigeons, quail, grosbeaks, hermit thrushes, and waxwings. Bears and beavers enjoy the fruit and foliage, and deer eat the twigs.

Some aboriginal people used the wood, which is fine-grained, hard and heavy, for bows and arrows. More recently, the Cowichan people on Vancouver Island made knitting needles from it.

The Straits Salish made a tanning agent from the bark. The Thompson people made dyes – deep brown from the bark, black when mixed with grand fir, and red from the roots.

The wood has been used for piano keys. Pacific dogwood varieties are attractive ornamental plant in coastal gardens.

But remember if you see one – British Columbia Legislation protects the Pacific dogwood from being dug up or cut down.

Reference and more about this plant: http://www.for.gov.bc.ca/hfd/library/documents/treebook/pacificdogwood.htm

Also, it has been a week of finding more homes for paintings and releasing some new ones for sale. Find out more on Terrill Welch Artist at  “Oil landscape paintings – three new releases and three to ship

Can you share with us  the flower emblem of your Province or State?

Wishing a wonderful week ahead with many creative adventures!

© 2013 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

Creative Potager – Visit with painter and photographer Terrill Welch

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

For gallery and purchase information about Terrill’s photographs and paintings go to http://terrillwelchartist.com

The Story of the Swamp Lantern

Swamp lantern is a beautiful name for our wild western skunk cabbage or Lysichiton americanus. My first experience with this smelly beauty was when I was five years old and I was walking with my mother in the early evening along a logging skid trail.

Swamp Lantern by Terrill Welch 2013_03_23 408

We were living in our small portable bunk house right on the edge of the logging landing where the cats skidded the logs in and the loaders loaded them up on the logging trucks for their long trip from the middle-of-no-where in Cariboo country British Columbia to the sawmill in Williams Lake. The close proximity to the working logging area meant that we had to stay inside the small two room cabin on skids during working hours. How my mother did this with two young children and a baby I can’t even begin to image.

Skunk Cabbage by Terrill Welch 2013_03_23 392

My mother loved to be outside as much as we did so when the whistle blew and the last machine shut down we were out the door and walking the nearest skid trail that went through the swamp area behind the landing and then beyond. In the low light of the heavily treed forest, infused with dank freshly turned earth, next to the pungent swamp, is where I encountered my first swamp lantern. Gorgeous!

skunk cabbage early spring by Terrill Welch 2013_03_23 386

The blossom petals are an unbelievably bright, almost opaque yellow accompanied by cabbage-like exotic tropical foliage. Each plant also has a distinctively phallic stamen that is somehow unavoidable more pronounced in any compositional photograph than when in the presence of  the plant itself. However, all in all, this is a most beautiful native announcement of early spring. But after these beauties have been blooming for a while – the smell! Once it has traveled up your nasal passages, you will never, ever forget – skunk cabbage!

swamp beauty by Terrill Welch 2013_03_23 357

Our western variety is not good to eat because as it contains calcium oxalate crystals which would be much like eating crushed glass. This caution does not apply if you are a bear. The swamp lantern or skunk cabbage is an important part of bear’s spring laxative tonic when it come out of hibernation.

The plants large, waxy leaves were important to indigenous people for food preparation and storage. They were commonly used to line berry baskets and to wrap around whole salmon and other foods when baked under a fire. It is also used to cure sores and swelling.

reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lysichiton_americanus

 

What wild spring flowers are powerful connections to one of your childhood memories?

 

P.S. Three more paintings have sold over the weekend but I will tell you more about this in another post soon. All the best of Easter Monday to you!

 

© 2013 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

Creative Potager – Visit with painter and photographer Terrill Welch

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

For gallery and purchase information about Terrill’s photographs and paintings go to http://terrillwelchartist.com

The Nurse’s Place Clinton B.C. – Plein Air painting

There is something extremely companionable about a painter with all her gear packed in the car, a partner who likes to sleep in and an overnight stop in the small village of 740 residents in Clinton, British Columbia.  As the darkness gathered tightly around a warm late-August evening, I scouted my morning plein air location. I wanted some place a little off the beaten path but not so far I couldn’t carry my french box easel and camera. This is what I found. I was standing here ready to set up to paint at just after 8:30 in the morning…

With a blank canvas on the easel

I had about an hour to capture all I was going to capture.

What was most important? What shall I leave out? How shall I begin? With a large brush, I start to answer these questions as I rough in the view.

Notice the top of the painting and how the clip is not holding the painting in place. When plein air painting the light and the weather often change quickly. About 45 minutes into my painting session this oversight of that loose top clip becomes a grave error.

Yes, you guessed it. A large gust of wind came teasing down the valley and, to my horror, flipped this small painting off the easel and smack on its face in the gravel bits on the road. I pick it up and do things a little more securely the next time.

While I was still assessing the damage and deciding what – if anything – I could do next, the neighbour from the place on the other side of the road behind me came up and asked if I minded if he had a look. This is when I learned that I was painting “The Nurse’s Place.” With a promise to give him a call when the painting was completed, I conceded that my time was up. I started to pack my gear up and with the painting tightly secured to the easel headed back to the Cariboo Lodge where my dear sweet husband proclaimed that he loved the painting gravel and all. I gave grim half smile while silently I saying a small prayer to the gods that look after plein air painters and their paintings to allow the gravel bits to roll off the canvas once it had dried.  Then we went for a late breakfast and I refused to look at the painting again until today.

To my delight, the small bits of gravel rolled off the painting and I was able to finish up the painting in the studio.

THE NURSE’S PLACE CLINTON B.C. 9 x 12 inch oil on canvas by Terrill Welch

Available at https://www.artworkarchive.com/profile/terrill-welch/artwork/the-nurse-s-place-clinton-bc

I have now set an image of this painting up so it can be purchased as a print or card on redbubble at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch/works/9305818-the-nurses-place-clinton-b-c

Well, at least most of the gravel is gone. If a person looks very closely there is still a little Cariboo grit on that canvas. But I think that is only as it should be. I am calling it DONE! My next task is to place a call to the wonderful neighbour who dropped by to see how the painting was coming along.

SPROUT: When was the last time you courted disaster only to have it give you a good hard flip?

© 2012 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

Purchase photography at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

Terrill Welch online Gallery at http://terrillwelchartist.com

An Evening on Brown Ridge Saturna Island

Oh it seems like forever since I have checked in! Paintings and photography prints have sold. I am part of a new project for an online One Day Only – Artist Studio Floor Show, August 31, 2012. New paintings are completed and the summer is flying by. But, before I update you on these aspects over the next few days, lets just settle in and enjoy the end of a fine day on Brown Ridge Saturna Island.

Nice deep breath and long exhale. Okay, now we are ready….

Pull up a seat on the grass with us while the light is getting low in the western sky.

Yes, pajamas and house coat are just fine. Bring your blanket too as the air cools quickly with this vast open view. Look at the container ship picking up steam on its way through the islands to the open sea. I wonder where it is going?

What is that munching and grunting noise? Do you hear it? I wonder, could it be the feral goats that live on the ridge? Well we will have to get now and walk over the edge of the steep grassy slop and have a look. Yes there they are! Right below us with the sea in the background.

And look at this smelly little cutie. The mammas and babies were farther off. These fellows were obviously having a bachelor party.

Well here is a bit of pink showing up in the sky but it won’t be much of a sunset tonight.

The birds are getting quiet and the air is still – not even a summer breeze coming up the cliffside. Such a view! Darkness starts to seep into the corners.

Lights from the distant cities come into view and the July half-moon get brighter in the night sky.

We make a wish on the first stars that we see. We find the big dipper and we sit in the quiet of night high up on Brown Ridge, Saturna Island. We think about what it would be like to sleep out under the stars all night. But finally it is time to head back to Saturna Lodge and our comfortable beds next to the garden.

There! Wasn’t this the finest of evenings in nature? For us it was one of the highlights of our trip, right up there with Siglinde’s amazing breakfast at the lodge 😉

Sprout: When was the last time you were deep in the wilderness when night came over the day?

© 2012 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

Purchase photography at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

Terrill Welch online Gallery at http://terrillwelchartist.com

Sketching by the Sea – 7 tips for sketching with children

My grandson, Arrow, and I are on vacation over on Saturna Island this week. Yesterday was an overcast. No rain but the light was dull and lacked luster.  Photography and painting en plein air just didn’t seem to be the most appealing activities to undertake. So we did a midday hike at Narvaez Bay for lunch and then went to Winter Cove for some sketching by the sea.

 

Here are our tips for enjoying outdoor sketching:

1. Do physical exercise first – it is much easier to sit or stand for an hour to focus on sketching after a hike. The eyes seem to be able to see better when the body can comfortably be still.

2. Use good quality materials because they are easier and the results are more satisfying.

3. Find a place that offers some privacy where people are not able to walk up behind you. If they come up beside you or in front of you, they are more likely to ask to see your work than stand lurking in the background.

4. Situate yourself at the level or in the perspective that you want to capture your subject. In the photograph above we are almost at water level and in the same relationship to the scene as I would be to photograph.

5. Sit or stand  in such a position that you can see each other sketching without moving. This is extremely effective for easy conversation and learning by observation without interruption.

6. Keep the session short. When interest wanes, take a break. For example, wander around and maybe skip some rocks. Then come back to the sketching.

7. Relax and enjoy. 🙂 Don’t worry about the results or giving more than very basic instruction. Children  will observe and ask questions about what they need to know at that time.

Today, with a bit of luck, we shall have a chance to do some en plein air painting with oils on canvas.

 

SPROUT: What tip would you offer if introducing your favourite creative activity to children?

 

© 2012 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

Purchase photography at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

Terrill Welch online Gallery at http://terrillwelchartist.com

Mayne Island May Day Celebrations

Mayne Island May Day celebrations on Saturday were an amazing colourful and entertaining event where a mime artist helps us wait for the fun to start

children grow wings for the day,

a queen is crowned with a garland wild flowers,

adult cloths are layers of frolicking miss-match

and shoes go missing as the community dances together in circles

while all is softly punctuated with very short greetings from our federal MP the Honourable Elizabeth May.

But what is this Mayne Island celebration with its dancing around the May Pole and organized each year by the Mayne Island Conservancy ?

I could tell you but a Mayne Island musical group Jaiya has an incredibly detailed post that will fill your cup with delightful details.

There are more of my photographs for your viewing pleasure in my smugmug album that is dedicated to this event.

Also, our good friend and writer  Leanne Dyck has a special post that has a photo-essay of even more about what was happening on this special Mayne Island day.

Happy May long weekend  from Mayne Island, British Columbia Canada!

SPROUT: If you could come to the Mayne Island May Day celebrations next year what will you be wearing? 

© 2012 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

Purchase photography at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

Terrill Welch online Gallery at http://terrillwelchartist.com

From Moonlight to Nomads Essentials

On Mayne Island we are flexible. We can go from shooting the moon to finding natural solutions for smelly feet in one blog post. Not bad eh?

First, allow me to welcome all the new people who have subscribed to Creative Potager as a result of “Mayne Island Super moon on May 5 2012” being Freshly Pressed yesterday.  It is a pleasure to have you join our creative community.

So now back to smelly feet. Well, not really smelly feet but it is one of the many things you might want to discuss with the owner of Nomads Essentials, Barbara McIntyre, here on Mayne Island off the southwest coast of Canada.

Some of you may remember that Barbara has shared the space with me to show our photography at the Green House Bar and Grill for the past 1.5 years. But even if you don’t remember, that is okay because I do. I also remember that it was with her encouragement that put my work up in this venue. Now she is off on a new adventure and I want to be the first to share it with you. Welcome to her new store located on the right side of The Root Seller Inn in downtown Miners Bay.

Isn’t it just gorgeous!?

Nomads Essentials will have its grand opening on Saturday May 12, 2012 between 11:00 am and 4:00 pm

Barbara is the most warm, caring and giving person who I am overjoyed to call my friend. She is often making things upside down right

particularly when it comes to  the “Four Rs” of reduce, reuse, recycle or refuse. This is not always an easy task when providing body and home products designed for the contemporary nomad. But she does it with a creative flare many would envy. She views her new store as she does herself – a work in progress.

Barbara as you might guess is not new to providing us with her artisan products. My first purchase of Barbara’s wares goes back several years and it was a bar of her handmade soap. Sometimes I get one in fancy gift wrapping if it is for a present.

But if it is for me, I get it start up with one small band of recyclable paper identity card.

Out of curiosity, I asked what was her best seller?  I was sure the answer would be her bath salts but I was wrong. It is her Reclined Bed Freshener.

Yes, I did bring home some to try.

But what about sore muscles from hiking or kayaking around the Gulf Islands?

Chapped Lips from the sun and sea breeze?

Moths in the closet where you store your best outdoor wool sweater for watching the sunset over at the lighthouse?

Or chocolate that is delicious but won’t melt in your pocket on a warm day clambering up to the view from Henderson Hill?

Or huh-hum… those smelly feet as they exit your summer sandals?

I promise you that Barbara can fulfill almost any nomads essential needs for body, mind and spirit. Speaking of spirit, I was most amazed at how Barbara’s photography shows up as part of her signature being when displayed in an environment where she has carefully chosen the colours for Nomads Essentials.

Just beautiful!

As you can see,  we are very flexible here on Mayne Island as we go from moonlight to smelly feet to  twinkle toes. Now you will have everything you need to come along with me on my next photo shoot. Oh! Better bring your camera. I didn’t notice any at Nomads Essentials. But then again, I am sure I didn’t notice everything. It is always good to leave a thing or two for others to discover 😉

Thank you Barbara for allowing me to share your new store with Creative Potager and I wish you all the best with this new adventure. Warm hugs as always and we shall see you again on Saturday at the grand opening of Nomads Essentials!

SPROUT: What are your personal nomadic essentials?

© 2012 Terrill Welch, All rights reserved.

Liberal usage granted with written permission. See “About” for details.

Purchase photography at http://www.redbubble.com/people/terrillwelch

Creative Potager – where imagination rules. Be inspired.

From Mayne Island, British Columbia, Canada

Terrill Welch online Gallery at http://terrillwelchartist.com