Posts

HOWL tomorrow night!

Image
I'm trying to pick something to read tomorrow night on open mic at Nik Beat's fabulous poetry and music event at QSpace: HOWL. Nik's open mic is the best in the city - he gives readers and performers 5 minutes, instead of the usual minimal 3 minutes. Well worth going to if you are in TO or nearby! Great features - Alana Cook, Liz Worth and Meghan Morrison this month - and many very talented folks will step up to the open mic too. A tea or glass of wine or a beer, some dessert. The finest way to spend the last Sunday evening of every month!

https://www.facebook.com/events/416055368480423/

Howl at Q Space Series: Alana Cook, Liz Worth & Meghan Morrison
Sunday at 7:00pm Q Space in Toronto, Ontario Invite Friends · You're going Howl @ Q Space

Ok, some more poets, but the same night

Image
Two Poets on 3 Minute Open Mic Readings at Hot Sauced Words, a poetry event, 21 Feb 2013, charcoal, conte crayon, 80lb archival paper.

Ok, I said I wouldn't. But it's the same night, and I haven't worked on it. These two gents are 3 min poses on Open Mic at Hot Sauced Words. They remind me of Estragon and Vladimir in Becket's Waiting for Godot: ESTRAGON: (despairingly). Ah! (Pause.) You're sure it was here? VLADIMIR: What? ESTRAGON: That we were to wait.

The real poets behind their 3 minute sketches were wonderful, and not Godotian at all.

___

Poets Reading Poetry Series Drawing to an End

Image
Cynthia Gould and Matthew Tierney reading at Toronto WordStage on Wed Feb 13, 2013. 9" x 12", mixed media on Strathmore drawing paper.

I think these will be my last 'poet drawings.' The poses aren't very interesting, the angle at which I sit and the lighting is usually not ideal, there's always a microphone in front of the face, and there isn't enough time to properly draw anyone (and I do not take reference photos, for the record). But the real problem is the amount of time I spend 'finishing' these little drawings. I only consider them exercises, like doing scales, a way to practice drawing, and find that working on them is keeping me from working on my own drawings and paintings. So I am considering sketching sometimes at poetry readings and rarely showing these 'exercises.' While a couple of the women, Cynthia included (she is the first image above) have liked their drawings and posted them publicly, most of the poets I draw say nothi…

Detail of Untitled Unfinished Drawing

Image
Copper, silver and gold leaf, and an angel with spiked wings.



Unbelievable that this took the entire afternoon. Detail of Untitled Unfinished Drawing, 2013, Brenda Clews, 28.5cm x 42cm, 11 1/4" x 16 1/2", graphite, India ink, copper, silver and gold leaf in a Moleskine A3 Sketchbook.

Not the best lighting perhaps, but I'm tired, and took about 30 photos and this one will have to do for now.

I had intended to paint it, quite lightly so as not to disturb its quality, but looking at it on a table-top easel, and re-considering, I may only ink in the pencil lines with the grey ink the man is in. Below is the original full sketch, drawn a month ago. Paper in a Moleskine is a pale creamy yellow, as in the painting (albiet it's a bit darker but I used daylight bulbs and what you see was the closest I could get to the original), so I must have over colour-corrected the sketch.



___


Reuters: Incredible amateur videos of meteor over central Russia; 1,000 injured (2:58)

Image
Incredible footage of the meteor that streaked into Russia that I wanted to keep a link to.

 ___

TV these days...

Image
Last night I watched a couple of episodes of the BBCs Sherlock Holmes on Netflix. It could have been the 3rd, or maybe the 4th, show when Sherlock defined himself as "a high-functioning sociopath," which, truly, he is, and, truly, was a moment of hilarity. My daughter put me on to this show. My son to True Blood, and this after prior years of Buffy and then Angel, and more recently to The Walking Dead (which is excellently acted in a fascinating apocalyptic story of post-viral life -a virus kills a person and turns them into a zombie by using the brain stem and the only way a zombie can die is to have their head, well, uh... it's really good make-up, no CSI). And Lizzie Violet to Luther. Luther so freaked me that I started sleeping with my little string of festive lights on, which my daughter really got a charge out of. But I have an over-active imagination and have never been able to watch thrillers because they do not stay on the screen and always lurk around the corne…

Poets at Poetry Readings Series: A Poet

Image
...another of my Poets at Poetry Readings Series. Successful "as portrait," no. I don't take reference photos, I didn't have my proper glasses and she was blurry, and there's not very much time to make a 'likeness.' But in other ways, perhaps. I'm ok with what's emerged here.

'A Poet,' 2013, 9" x 12", 22.9cm x 30.5cm, charcoal, conte, pastel on Strathmore archival drawing paper.

___

Upcoming Hand-crafted Chap Book and Solo Art Show at Q Space

Image
Yesterday was quite some day. First LinkedIn sent me an email saying my profile was among the top 10% viewed in 2012, and then my dear publisher and poetry cafe owner, Luciano Iacobelli, a brilliant poet in his own right, gives me an early May launch for the hand-crafted poetry chap book, 'the illuminist poems,' his press, LyricalMyrical, will publish and get this, a solo art show at Q Space at the same time! Given that I've had 20 years of the most unbelievable closed door experiences and hardly believe anything can go through for me, I am entirely taken by surprise and hardly know how to react. Someone pinch me. And I keep telling myself, I do have the confidence to do all this... 

(Below, potential cover for the chap book.

 ...The figure was drawn by arranging my small art skeleton and drawing it from the comfortable couch across the room while watching a show on Netflix... then I fleshed it out with a woman's form - you can still see the ilium, femur, a little of the…

LinkedIn is a Hoot

Image
I have one of the top 10% most viewed @LinkedIn profiles for 2012. That's what LinkedIn, which has now reached 200 million members worldwide, says. Who knows? Doesn't seem possible. But it's still very cute.

An email this morning led to a page on LinkedIn that was ready to Tweet this (which I obligingly did lol): "Hurray! I have one of the top 10% most viewed @LinkedIn profiles for 2012. http://www.linkedin.com/pub/profile/25/084/261"

___

Pensive Woman

Image
Drawing I did last night. Photo taken with daylight bulbs, and one of them was shining perhaps too much on the forehead since the subtle shadows there aren't quite evident enough. But no photo is perfect, is it. The colours are good.

I think I was only aiming for my obsession with people. Understanding us. [Discovered afterwards] ...imparting a quality of strength and pensiveness, a life etched in the patterns of energy that compose the world.

'Pensive Woman,' 2013, 28.5cm x 42cm, 11 1/4" x 16 1/2", graphite, conte, charcoal, pastel, coloured pencil in a Moleskine A3 Sketchbook.

___

Snowfall

Image
Out last night for hours trudging through snow banks in nearly empty streets hood pulled tight loving every blast of sparkly snow dust and when the fire engine backed up towards us to find enough traction to drive into the fire station those bright flashing lights were a bokeh of beauty in the white mounds heaped high. Me in my snowpants and sheepskin boots with cleats wrapped over the soles and my dog in her coat and bright blue rubber dog booties (first year ever, but she's old and the salt, oh it must sting) trundling rushing through the snow streets like emissaries of the wind arriving home my underclothes so wet I had to get entirely changed and wrapped up in blankets to watch the Three Monkeys by Ceylan (a Turkish filmmaker, thanks Jean) where I was thrown into a world of intensities far beyond the simplicity of my walk in the snow.

(We received about 30cm, and I hadn't realized how much I missed snow over the past few dry winters.)

___

The Table for Everything One Week Later

Image
The Ikea NORDEN Gateleg folding table that I bought used through kijiji one week later. Le sigh.

(The right side is for writing; the left for drawing and painting smaller pieces, on paper, in sketchbooks; the middle for stacks of books, ones I'm reading as well as sketchbooks and notebooks. Since it's my living room, I chose this table since it folds to 10" wide for company.)

You can see the dog sleeping on an ottoman, and kitten toys on the floor, including a faux fur mouse that squeaks, yes it does.

 ___

The Table for Everything

Image
I am staring out at the dark snow-filled sky sitting at an Ikea NORDEN Gateleg folding table (both leaves fold so that the table is 10" wide), that I bought used through kijiji. On the leaf to the right, the 'writing' side, I am working on a poem; the other side is for painting on papers, in Moleskines and such, and has a table-top easel on it, jars of water, small plywood boards for inks and paints; in the middle are stacks of sketchbooks, notebooks and books of poetry. On my lap,  as I sit on a small folding chair that was a 'street find' last summer, is a small heated throw to keep electric heating costs down... it's cosy, quite lovely actually.

 ___

Another Illuminata Photo

Image
I took the photo in direct sun on my dining room table, the Moleskine at a steep angle. You can see in the upper left corner that the glass the sun shines through is splotchy (in 6 years the landlord has not cleaned it once). This photo will not replace the one that looks like a go, but I may post different takes simply because I find the appearance of the gold (and copper and silver) leaf in different types of light interesting.
___

'First Death in Nova Scotia': John Scott's adaptation of a poem by Elizabeth Bishop

Image
direct link: First Death in Nova Scotia: an adaptation of a poem by Elizabeth Bishop

John Scott's new cinepoem is strange and haunting and beautiful: 'First Death in Nova Scotia,' a new adaptation of an Elizabeth Bishop poem. John wrote in an email:

"I would love it if you could spread the word on your facebook page or blog. We're seeking a wide audience for it in an effort to build energy and credibility for a longer documentary we want to make on the poet Elizabeth Bishop. I know that you're a busy person and your help is definitely appreciated!"

With a death in my family last year, my 89 year old mother passed away peacefully in a nearby nursing home, and memories of a deceased second cousin, a middle-aged man, lying in a coffin in a house in England when I was perhaps eight years old, this cinepoem moved me in that profound way that gazing upon someone who has died does. The whiteness, the life etched in the features, the form that is already dissolv…

My chap book, the luminist poems, will be published by LyricalMyrical Press!

Image
LyricalMyrical Press is publishing my chap book, 'the luminist poems'!! It's official! Wow. This really is very lovely - it will be my first published book.

LyricalMyrical publishes small runs of handmade chap books. They are beautiful little jewels, and I have bought a number of them. Very high quality writing. Luciano Iacobelli is an astute publisher, and a brilliant poet in his own right - he is also the founder and owner of the small,  new poetry cafe and bookshop in Toronto, Q Space. I am very honoured to join the select group at LyricalMyrical.

Prose poems on light and love and their complexities.

Below a possible cover.






___