Monday, April 18, 2011

Toronto the Grey

This piece was for my alternative painting mediums... or (something like that) class with shirley Yanover (she is the woman who did those cat sculptures at the entrances to kensington market)  ... AWESOME class... LOVED it, favourite of the whole year, totally my cup of tea.  Also... she was just really cute and sweet.

I believe this piece is roughly 4 feet by 5 feet?  canvas, uv active acrylics, spray paint, granola box + matchstick = buildings, scrap metal scavenged from the metal shop, a black bird lovingly donated by a friend, sticks berries, etc.  Hydro poles are made from matchsticks and dowels. Attached everything with fishing line and white glue.

certain details like the hydro lines are hand sewn into the canvas

Saturday, April 16, 2011


This was a project for my LGBTQ (queer) studies studio.  The project was something about redesigning an institute, and intervention or something...  I had seen on tumblr that Mr. Mike Enders was looking for a piece of art for his blog.

ACCIDENTAL BEAR  ... so I figured... why not?  He had mentioned that he wanted a likeness of himself wearing a bear skin hide/ rug...  my initial thoughts were some kind of neo shamanistic mononoke sorta thing.  HOWEVER I knew that he really liked this vintage photo of Burt Reynolds.

So I decided to redraw this vintage image with a likeness of Mike Enders (seen below)  I sent the preliminary drawing to him, and he seemed to really love the idea.

Sent him this final image... currently waiting on feed back.   Its mostly watercolour, a little bit of ink on the tattoos and some acrylic in the background (i chose orange green and brown, because he seemed to wear alot of these colours in the photos I had to work from)

Friday, April 15, 2011

life size self portrait

              As many artists, I struggle with a duality within my personality, and wanted to create a self portrait as an expression of this.  Though I try to be a happy, confidant person, and I praise myself on being able to look at the bright side, I have always struggled with inner negativity.  As a teenager I was diagnosed with an eating disorder, clinical depression and anxiety disorders, since that time I have constantly struggled to keep this under control and not to let it effect me.  Like everyone, I have days that are better than others. These past few months have been a bit of a struggle for me, but I feel with the coming Spring there is light at the end of the tunnel. Hopefully a renewal of confidence, and I look forward to spending time outdoors where I feel the most positive and connected.
            In this near life size self portrait, I wanted to paint a less confidant self, greeting a more confidant self.  The confidant version of myself is seen in a looking glass, which serves as both a mirror and a gateway to a different place.  I included a pair of red-winged blackbirds, which to me symbolize where I grew up.  They remind me of car rides, dirt roads, visiting relatives, and that orange glow seen at sunrise and sunset.  I included a pair of mice who symbolize my birth year as the Wood Rat, and were painted in the likeness of an old companion of mine named Sylus.  Growing up in the country I have always had a connection with foxes. I have had many one on one close encounters with foxes, each encounter felt magical, and I felt blessed by the experience.  I used these animal pairs to represent different symbolic meanings as well as to emphasize a union between the dualities within myself.
            I used acrylic paint, as well as spray paint, and combined a realistic approach, with a messy dripping technique, to portray the contrast between confidence and solidarity and instability and loss of self. I struggled with the self portraiture technically and  even more so mentally.  At a time when I am feeling very insecure and unconfident about myself, it is a struggle to look yourself in the face.  Do you see the real you? Or the You that you want to see?  Which one is which?   One thing that I have learnt so far in life is that we learn the most through struggle.  I may not be 100% sure about how I personally feel towards this painting, but I did learn more about certain techniques and composition, and hopefully a little bit more about myself.

Friday, April 8, 2011

some randoms

here is some random outside of class stuff i have done in the last week or two. 
this is sewn onto linen, who doesnt love cute guys and pandas?
this is graphite and gel transfer on wood panel  i think about 8x10


print from last year, but dont think i ever documented this series.  the knotwork was crazy hard for me.. almost mathematical