Old Woman of the Sea


Old Woman of the Sea, 35.5cm x 39.5cm, 14" x 15.5", India ink, conte crayon, oils on 100lb archival paper.

It's not that I paint, but that the painting paints me. It changes me somehow. It's not that I paint something but rather that I paint what's changing in me through the process of creating the painting.

Old Women of the Sea: the old woman is in the ocean; the ocean moves through her; she is the ocean. Like a mother ocean.

A figurative landscape, or, rather, seascape.

I painted her in near darkness last night, in a dimly lit room. The colours looked almost the same on the paper - I only knew which was which because of the names on the tubes, which I could just make out. As I painted, I trusted my intuitive aesthetic senses.

In the midnight air I went to the table I've set up for painting while my children are away (at their Dad's - it's Canadian Thanksgiving and my half of the family wined and dined on Saturday night). I chose a sketch. And began painting, hardly being able to see what I was doing. Doing it by intuitive sense. And I wanted to let go of the naysayers in my head, and paint with an emotional clarity.

And I guess that's perhaps that's why I have to be alone to work. My children's presence or absence has nothing to do with it. I'm learning who I am when I paint. Or being taught by my painting. It's a very intimate, private process - until it's finished, and then you can show the world.


I'm painting some of the sketches I did at a life drawing drop-in session at TSA (Toronto School of Art) in August.

The original sketch as I did it in the life drawing session
that I went to with my niece. If you click on it, you'll go to the album.



Lifedrawing6, 28cm x 35.5cm, 11"x14", India ink, conte crayon, 100lb archival paper.


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