Wednesday, 19 August 2020

Repairs Underway


On any boat there are always little jobs to do - whipping lines, small repairs and such.  This day it was re-stitching the leather cover on the wheel.  Once again we were powering along with the autohelm steering so the wheel could be removed for better access.

There was plenty of time for that job as well as some other nautical pursuits such as practicing knots and taking measurements to make a dity bag.

Tuesday, 18 August 2020

Some Calm Sketching


Lake Ontario can be windy and rough, but mid-summer is as likely to be dead calm.  On our recent trip to and from the Thousand Islands from Toronto, we had both extremes, often from one day to the next.  I prefer to sail, but chugging along under power with autohelm steering, is another reason to have a sketch book on hand. 

Wednesday, 29 July 2020

All's Calm on .calm

I just spent a few lazy days, on a pal's sailboat, reading, swimming and sketching while at anchor in the Navy Islands near Gananoque on the St. Laurence River.  It was as busy as I had heard about but was beautiful nonetheless.  

Friday, 3 July 2020

An Urban Sketcher Hits the Street

With the Wolfe Island Gallery  closed indefinitely, the idea came to me to use the main Street in the Village of Marysville to exhibit large versions of the sketches I did last winter and spring of the islands and village.  The exhibit title is FARM VILLAGE LAKE as the 24 drawings describe the cultural landscape of Marysville, Wolfe and Simcoe Islands. I reflects my ongoing fascination with development patterns and how they are changing the Ontario Landscape.

The drawings went up in time for Canada Day, including a couple of title sheets which give the url for an explanatory web site.  I deliberately worked fast, standing, with a broad marker to keep the energy of the small original sketches.  I pleased that the scale and number of panels gives the exhibit the right amount of presence on the street.

So far the tyvek is holding up well and villagers assure me that its unlikely that any will be stolen, although I'm sure they'll be a little fatigued by Labour Day.

Sunday, 14 June 2020

Scaling Up for an Installation

Several months ago I bought a lovely sketchbook and some new fountain pens and have filled it almost exclusively with line drawings of Wolfe and Simcoe Islands.

There was no plan, other than a sort of fixation with the islands and the village of Marysville in particular and faith that it would lead to something else.  Along the way, I joined the Wolfe Island Gallery, which is an artists co-operative in the village, again with no clear idea of just what I would display.  When word came through that the Gallery would not physically open this summer, a purpose for the drawings
occurred to me, as I had hoped it might.

In the absence of the Gallery, I decided to redraw the little sketches on 3' x 4' sheets of durable tyvek and lace those as banners along the main street of Marysville.  This is also the prompt I needed to do much larger, stand-alone pieces, which will be better suited to exhibition than my tiny little bound sketchbook, not to mention omit the seam of the 2 page spreads.

The photos are of my tiny 6" x 9" sketchbook,
selecting from photocopies which sketches to re-draw and a 3' x 4' test enlargement.

Monday, 8 June 2020

Outdoor Room

I ran into my friend Matt the other day in the ferry line up.  He had been working with a contractor pal, building a dock and commented that the island was "bucolic".   An apt term and particularly appropriate to describe the porch in the sketch.

I had noticed it the day before, but as its such a domestic space it seemed intrusive to sketch it - almost like looking into someone's living room.  But luckily, the next day the owner was sitting out with friends and I asked for permission to draw -  not only out of courtesy but because it can look a little creepy to be parked in a car staring out the window at someone's home.   I was welcomed and even offered a drink - that seems to be a consistent vibe in the village.  Visitors Welcome.

Do They All Float?

Not surprisingly there are lots of boats on Wolfe Island stashed here and there in fields and open sheds.  This little fleet dwells in the village and all look ready to go for a swim.

No Gas

There is a garage in Marysville, but nowhere to buy gas, so keeping a tank full requires some planning.  Luckily there is a mechanic and they are right on the main street of the village.

Sunday, 7 June 2020

"Ferry's in"

A large part of my attraction to Marysville is the island experience. The ferry trip back and forth,  despite the constrained views from the car, is a connection to the sea state on the crossing and the duration provides a sort of mental separation from the City.  Even staying in the car, it satisfies my  love of just being on the water.

In the village, there are views from Main Street out to Barrett's Bay, but more than that, there is a rhythm of activity tied to the hourly ferry schedule.  Cars queue up along Main Street to ensure a place on the next boat and when it arrives theres a sort of tidal flow of 50 or so vehicles disembarking.  Ten minutes before arrival of the ferry there is a rush to pay up and turnover of tables at the local restaurants and over and lots of waving and salutations as people acknowledge friends along the street and at the terminal as the ferry unloads and takes on a new load.