Everything from Soup to Nuts

We are not to the bottom of the barrel quite yet but we are definitely down to everything from soup to nuts. It looks like we are in for a stretch of rain. I am going away for the weekend and need to deliver a package of art inventory to our local décor story and catch the noon ferry to Victoria. I still need to post and pack. So I have a choice between an image of a water-logged log or this awesome spicy eggplant soup served with heavy spelt bread and almond hazelnut butter. I thought you would prefer the soup.

Spicy Eggplant Soup

5-7 cups organic vegetable stock

2 carrots, diced

1 small onion diced

2 small locally grown organic eggplants or one normal size cubed

2 tablespoons grated gingerroot (I used homemade blackberry ginger chutney because I had no gingerroot)

1 clove of garlic (can use two… we are just light on garlic)

1 cup chopped fresh tomatoes just pick from the garden (or organic canned if out of season)

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro (up to 1/2 cup if you like cilantro)

1 teaspoon cumin

pepper and kosher sea salt

In large pot saute carrots onion, eggplant, ginger and garlic over medium heat in a few tablespoons of vegetable stock adding more stock if needed until onions are done. Stir in remaining stock, tomatoes, cumin and pepper; cover and bring to boil, then lower heat and simmer for 20-30 minutes or until it is done. Add cilantro and sea salt to taste. Let sit while preparing heavy toasted spelt bread smeared with almond hazelnut butter.

This recipe has been adapted from p. 122 of Cooking Vegetarian: Healthy,Delicious and Easy Vegetarian Cuisine by Vesanto Melina, R.D. and Joseph Forest (published 1996 MacMullan Canada). The original recipe has two potatoes diced in as well and offers the option of saute with 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil instead of vegetabel stock.

It has been the most fabulous week here on Creative Potager. I thank you for your comments, for sharing this creativity site with others and even for taking the time to drop by and lurk in the corners. I shall be back with a new post again on Monday. Best of the weekend to you!

Sprout Question: When is your next day off from your regular creative practice?

p.s. I also chose the related links special for us as well so you might want to take a look.

© 2010 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

dahlias from a friend

Grown in her garden, these dahlias were picked and packed and brought by ferry to my art opening. I love how you can only see one face of a dahlia at a time. They seem to turn just slightly to give each large bloom a chance to shine. When I look at this image I remember how my friend came with her sleeping bag and a tent to stay in the camp ground because it was the only accommodation where she could stay for just one night and bring her beautiful big dogs. I remember how she sometimes says that “getting old is not for wimps” and that the wind came up that evening along active pass. She said she wouldn’t have missed my party for anything. I believe her.

Today is the ninth anniversary of the day David and I met. We are fortunate in our love, our family, and our friendships. I re-gift these dahlias from our friend, now as a photograph rendered in oils, to David. Happy anniversary my love.

Sprout Question: How can the many blossoms of your creativity come together in one bouquet?

© 2010 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

The Sustaining Rosehip

The last few posts here on Creative Potager have been about the end of life – a necessary reflection in our creative and life journey, but not a place to dwell.

Today I want to shift us towards sustaining. What sustains us until the time of renewal? In the seasons the time of renewal is spring. The rosehip has always been a sustaining symbol and resource for me through fall and winter. When I was young, we were told we could eat rosehips if we got lost in the woods. My mother made apple-rosehip butter for a special treat on our hot porridge or toast. While playing outside, we would peel the rosehip skin off and nibble it sometimes pretending we were eating a piece of the sun, leaving the pithy insides for the mice and birds.

The nutritional and health attributes of rosehips are well known. They are used to make teas for the immune system and oils for the skin – just to name a few ways it is employed. So, when I see rosehips, I am filled with a “we can do it” attitude. I almost always smile and I sometimes laugh aloud when I see them. I feel hopeful. I feel able to reach into my stored reserves and snatch a piece of possibility right off one of those thorny branches.

Sprout Question: What sustains your creativity until a time of renewal?

© 2010 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

A trip to the high desert property

Where to begin. On Friday July 30, 2010, I left Mayne Island for a visit to Oroville Washington and out into the high desert. I was invited on a camping trip for the long weekend to come and see the 20 acres that my son, daughter-in-law, David’s daughter and three other friends had purchased last year. I am excited. It will be a five hour drive from Vancouver but I had heard so much about how it was the home of the rattle snake. And how it looked and felt like Clint Eastwood would ride over the hill any moment. And about how it hardly ever rained.

Well, I didn’t get to see a rattle snake. We  tried to  ensure that didn’t happen as we climbed up the dry cliff side. I didn’t get to see Clint Eastwood – but I thought I might from the looks of the hills. And it did rain – both evenings. The thunderstorms were glorious and refreshing after the heat of the day.

Here is a quick snippet of what it was like as the waves of hot air brushed my skin in the early morning sun. The light is more yellow orange than usual because of smoke in the air, likely from forest fires started by lightening.

Just around this bend…

Is the property a good part of which is an amazing bluff…

and here is the other end of the bluff…

can you smell the sagebrush I’m standing in?

What else I wonder might we see somewhere near a grove of small poplar trees?

Oh my what do we have here?

A wild turkey hen and over here is one of her four chicks…

We won’t go any closer as these fellows are still very small.  The grasses and drying flowers are particularly beautiful.

Later in the morning we climb part of the way up the cliff side. This is where I am most worried I might see a rattle snake. My son assures me that it was too early in the day. He advises that I step on the logs and rocks, not over them, so the snake will hear and feel the vibration of my foot steps. After all the snake doesn’t want to see me either.

There is a spring that comes out part way down the hill and it still has a small pool of water for the birds. Even so, I was surprised to see this colourful fellow on the branch of a ponderosa pine…

It is a western tanager. Though fairly common they are a bit shy so this is only the second time I have seen one.

My apologies for being late getting the post up today. I had some computer trouble and then it was time for lunch. As you can see we had a marvelous trip. I will do another post a little later of just the rolling hills and grasses. Next time I go, I hope to bring you photos taken from the top of the bluff. We shall see.

Special thanks for having me along go out to…

My son Kris, eating sunflower seeds while the ants pack the shells away as fast as they hit the ground.

My daughter-in-law Tina, who doesn’t know I took this photo while she was cooking up one of her many outstanding dishes made with fresh vegetables and lots of herbs and spices.

My step-daughter Anya, soaking up the cooler late afternoon sun.

My grandson Arrow,

who was also my photo-shooting partner.

Sprout Question: How do you release your creative expectation and remain open to possibility?

© 2010 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

A painting only the artist can love

Sometimes it happens. From vision, to brush, to canvas a painting develops in large free strokes, dancing across the canvas engaging me in the swirling energy transferred in a sequence of creative exchanges. I stop. I rest my eyes upon the painting. I put my brush down. This is what occurred with “Cabin on Shore” It is a large brushed impressionist-style painting that maybe only the artist can love.

View and purchase high resolution print of “Cabin on Shore” original here.

18” x 24” by two inch 100% natural cotton gallery quality canvas water miscible oil painting

Below are a series of slideshow images capturing the creative process and detail.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Sprout Question: Has your heart ever stopped your head in a creative process?

© 2010 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

Flower Salad

It is almost getting to hot for salad greens now but I have a spot where the mixed greens are out of the hot sun by about one o’clock in the afternoon so they have stayed nice a little longer. I also grow calendula and nasturtium flowers especially for salad. The tomatoes are from an organic Vancouver Island greenhouse. My tomatoes are not yet ripe but if we peer into the three feet tall vines I wonder what we will find?

and

And there is another one…

Also I saw this interesting 2.5 to 3 inch long dragonfly fellow this morning. Not sure what kind it might be but very interesting.

Carrots are looking good.

Oh! While you are out here, can you water the garden please?

Sprout Question: If you could grow one new thing in your creative garden what would you be willing to weed, water and love until harvest time?

© 2010 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

Mayne Island Summer Group Show part 1

A bright corner of Mayne Island is going to get even brighter on July 9, 2010 to September 1, 2010 with the opening of the Mayne Island Summer Group Show with work from about a dozen participants. Do you want to come? Yes I know, for some of you it is too far away. But for others it may be down the road or just a ferry ride for a weekend get away.

Most of you know, I live on the wee Mayne Island with about a 1,000 people year round and maybe 3,000 hanging around during the summer. These 23 square kilometers in the Southern Gulf Islands off the west coast of Canada are home to a thriving art, artisan and writing community with its own arts council. The Mayne Island Trincomali Community Arts Council hosts a series of art exhibits at the Mayne Island Reading Room or “the library” throughout the year.

Whether you will be sipping wine and nibbling treats at the opening with us, between 7:00 and 9:00 pm in the heart of Miner’s Bay, on the evening of July 9th or you must suffice with my blog review, I hope you enjoy the offerings.

Here is a sneak preview…

Author and artisan Leanne Dyck has submitted a natural fiber art hand knit purse appropriately named “Summer Daze” that is begging to be slung over a shoulder and taken to a summer picnic. I laid it gently on this fir bow to photography. It appears to be right at home.

Quasimodo Pottery creates unique, extremely high quality craftsmanship and functional art in its pottery pieces. Here is a group image of pottery from their website.

The Quasimodo casserole dish was featured recently Creative Potager in the post “Quiet Grace.

Artist and message therapist Shakeira Wynde’s vibrant abstract acrylic painting will fill the exhibit all by itself with its brilliant colours. She graciously allowed me to slip by her home and take this photo for our early viewing.

My oil painting “East Point Cliff” asked me to put her forward for her debut in the Mayne Island Summer Group Show as well.

As you can see, there is a diverse collection of work in the show. We will be back to take another glance behind the Mayne Island Summer Group show curtain next Saturday before the opening the following week.

And here it is, next week already. Please come on over to Mayne Island Summer Group Show part 2

If you are thinking of coming, the Mayne Island B.C. website (which also has a link to the Mayne Island Chamber of Commerce ) can help you with your planning.

Sprout Question: Where are you showing your creative pieces work this summer?

© 2010 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

Squishy hug of thanks WORDPRESS

Thank you WORDPRESS for your user-friendly interchange and freely hosting blogs that can become small virtual communities such as Creative Potager has become. A big squishy, passionate hug is coming your way through cyberspace!

As of this hour today the wordpress Creative Potager blog has met a new milestone. Since its first post, on Dec 27 2009, the Creative Potager blog has published 102 posts and 1,605 comments AND (drum roll please) has had over 12,000 views. I am doing the happy dance (ta, ta, ta) all around the social networks with friends, casual acquaintances and passionate lurkers who are Creative Potager regulars.

Thank you especially to those who regularly respond to the Sprout Question that accompanies each post. Thank you to all of you who comment above and beyond the Sprout Question.  Thank you to all readers who lurk in the shadows. Your views are counted. You are part of the Creative Potager community.

My life and creativity is richer because of each and every one of you. Thank you, thank you thank you.

May the sun continue to rise, in all its glory, over our creative inspiration.

I decided we need a little visual toe-tapping to help us celebrate offered up by Andy the Daft Hermit from the Black Bus in the Highlands of Scotland. The music starts about 30 seconds in so wait for it and enjoy Andy’s photography video…

With much humble appreciation.

Terrill:)

Sprout Question: If WORDPRESS is the host and Creative Potager the post, who are you?

© 2010 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

Summer is coming

Creative Potager’s summer blog schedule begins the first week of May

budding possibilities - wild rose

The first post for Creative Potager was December 27, 2009. I have been posting a blog Monday to Friday, except for power outages caused by windstorms battering our little island in the Pacific Northwest. Including today, there are 83 posts each with their own sprout question. There are 1,165 comments documenting our creative conversations and 8, 596 times you have come to visit. Creative Potager has become an enjoyable habit to wake up to during the week where I say to myself “what shall I post today?” However summer is coming. I yearn to be outside in the garden, tramping the trails and painting on site rather than inside snuggled up to my laptop. Like the summer wild flowers in this post, I bloom best in untamed places.

each day is precious - wild tiger lily

So after giving it some serious thought, I am changing my posting schedule to twice a week on Tuesdays and Thursdays from the beginning of May until the beginning of September. I may on occasion post an additional submission. But these will be bonus or value-added posts rather than an expectation.

petite lady slipper

I am hoping you can live with this change and that we both will benefit from my scrambling around in the valleys and on the hills and down the beaches of Mayne Island and afar. I am hoping that we can still have rich and engaging conversations between posts even during the long days of summer. I am hoping that the sprout questions will be juicy enough to keep us inspired for the in-between times. I am hoping that you will trust that winter will come with its short days and unpredictable weather and we shall again be glad for our Monday to Friday sprout conversations fueled by the fruits of summer experiences.

drops of rain on white fawn lilies

Please let me know what YOU are hoping and what you think of this change – because most of the fun of this blog is my conversations with you!

Sprout Question: Does your creativity have a summer schedule?

© 2010 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

A Study

After yesterdays eclectic group of photos, today is a sparse offering.

These lovely little canvas prints from my East Point Images I shared with you in February the “Simplicity” post. They arrived in yesterday’s mail. I am starting to gather together material for my September solo exhibit and these are going on a particular spot above the books in the library which is hard show.

Like many people I feel physically, emotionally and spiritually naked when I bring my work into the public. This is particularly so do a reading from my writing such as on this coming Saturday or when I have my canvases on the wall in such as the September show. Yet, I have learned that it is a part of “the business of creativity” which must be navigated. So vulnerable or not, the show will go on…

Sprout Question: How do you prepare for a public viewing or listening of your work?

© 2010 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