The Crow Book

Finally, our little children’s book is done. I worked with my author friend and former co-worker Kat Beaulieu on this project for the past, well, for quite a while. Just before Christmas, we put it on Amazon. Here’s the link: Kat has written another charming kids book and I get to illustrate this one too. Stay tuned. It’s about an opera loving starling…

Life has been pretty chaotic but I’ve managed to do a bit of artwork. During the Christmas break in 2015 I did a couple of monoprints. I recently pulled one of them off the wall and added some drawing.

“Alley near Main”, 22.5 cm x 30 cm, oil monoprint with charcoal drawing on paper


Aunt Cyn

Aunt Cyn is middle-aged, grey-haired and largely invisible. Unless you need directions. She will often appear at that moment of directionless confusion and politely tell you how to get where you’re going. And then she’ll disappear. Like a mist.

She’s actually a super ordinary person, but a little anxious and very concerned about – things. Sometimes stupid things happen to her and then she realizes that, really, nothing is that important.

Every once in a while, Aunt Cyn will appear in this blog. Like now:

Aunt Cyn - Toothpaste

Favourite places

A third painting based on my meanderings around Caulfeild Park has finally made an appearance on a much-worked canvas. There are probably 3 or 4 (or more) painting attempts beneath the final image. I don’t think painters are supposed to admit this (Painting Rules Manual, Item #467: ‘Painting over old paintings is Bad’) but I have a thing about waste and having endless canvases around with bad paintings on them. I rather like the texture that resulted from my do-over process anyway.

Caulfeild Park 3

Caulfeild 3, acrylic, 24″ x 12″

On the drawing side, I did my own little urban (rural?) sketch at Southlands Farm in July. Farm animals are charming. Even the pigs were cute. I’ll draw them next time.southlandschicken_600px


Went out with the Urban Sketchers today – finally! The destination was the Sun Yat Sen Gardens and surrounding area. I sat at a bus stop and drew what was across the street. After two hours, my drawing didn’t seem finished so I added a few things later.

Today’s work is evidence that I have much practice to do. I think that I don’t know really how to organize or plan my drawing. I kind of see something, try to do a pencil draft then get caught up in too much detail and get frustrated. In the end, I may have a sketch but it’s not very…powerful, I guess. The composition isn’t thought out, there’s no real focus – my attention wanders from thing to thing… But it’s still fun. It’s challenging and there’s always a next time. And if I keep at it, maybe I’ll get better.

Here’s a link to today’s group work – worth taking a look:

Here’s my effort today:

I really need to practice drawing cars.

The Wild Turkey Tour

So, the Wild Turkey Tour is called the wild turkey tour only because I saw a couple of wild turkeys at the side of the road. They ran away too quick and I missed a photo op. The tour was a driving holiday through the Kootenays, a part of BC I hadn’t seen. Revelstoke, Nakusp – Hot Springs! – New Denver (charming), Kaslo (super interesting, especially the SS Moyie), Nelson, Grand Forks and the odd but interesting Greenwood. I didn’t get a lot of drawing done but managed a couple of quick sketches.


Nelson Brewery Company and various other studios/businesses – really rushed because it was starting to rain.


A shed near the Trans Canada trail in Greenwood (and our picnic table). Also rushed because we wanted to start the next leg of the journey. Quick drawings are actually a good thing, I’ve decided. Helps to quell the annoying perfectionist in me. Must do More!

An almost monthly Art post by Cindy Thom