Last week, in my painting class, the selected subject was a lovely waterfront scene looking across the Lake of Two Rivers in Algonquin Park. It was lovely. But it was also an autumn scene. Since I was feeling in dire need of Spring, I pulled a photo out of my bag and drew this instead. Alas, these little crocus blooms are not spring forth in my yard. The squirrels ate all mine. Perhaps this fall I’ll try planting some more.
Last year, my son’s teacher asked me to help her with an art project for her grade 7 classes. First step: a private lesson for the teacher so she would know what to do. She got a demo of wet on wet watercolour painting to produce a colourful background. No pictures… just colours in shapes, swirls or streaks and let the water do it’s magic. I provided the watercolour paper, paint in a limited palette and painting boards for the students to use. Then, the teacher went to town with all her grade 7 classes.
Second step came after the watercolour backgrounds were entirely dry and flat-ish. The students were provided some guidance in choosing patterns, time to practice them on paper and then they were provided Sharpie Ultra Fine point markers. Alas, the arts budget is too small! During one of their art periods, they had a substitute teacher who commented later that she had never, ever seen a class so focused while working. The room was almost silent while they concentrated on their tangles. The final result was a collection of amazing pieces of art. I was able to see lots of them but didn’t have my camera. This one is my 2012 Mother’s Day present from Aidan. I think it’s pretty wonderful.
Interesting painting class a couple weeks ago. One of my partners in splattering paint about brought in a photo from an unmentionable magazine. My first thought was “I need to buy eggplant to roast for the Thai Green Curry Chicken.” My second thought was “We’re not really going to paint eggplants, are we?” Guess what?
There you have it. (There are a bunch of my older paintings published here now if you’re interested. If you’re not, skip the link.)
We also had roasted eggplant in our curry. Yum. Sandra… this is for you:
Thai Green Curry Chicken
- 1 lb chicken breast or any other boneless chicken parts you like, cut into small bites
- 2 Tbsp coconut oil
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 2 Tbsp crushed garlic
- 1/2 jar Thai Kitchen Green Curry paste
- 1 can coconut milk (not light… go for the full fat and try to get one without added thickeners)
- 1 red pepper (or 2), sliced into thin strips (but not too thin)
- 1 eggplant, cut into 1 inch chunks and roasted (toss with coconut oil, roast at 350F for about 40 minutes)
- 1 chayote squash, cut into thin, bitesize pieces (this is optional but it’s delicious)
Melt coconut oil and saute onions and garlic until just translucent. Add chicken and curry paste and saute until the chicken is cooked through. Add the coconut milk, turn down to low and heat gently until just simmering. Add the red pepper, chayote and eggplant. Continue to simmer just until the veggies are hot. Don’t overcook now or you’ll lose the beautiful texture of the veggies. Serve in a bowl with a generous ladle of the coconut sauce and eat as though it were soup or ladle it over steamed rice.
This painting was created as a Christmas card a few years ago… perhaps in 2010. At the time I was painting this, the eldest boy was polishing a piano piece for his winter recital. I’m sure you’ll be humming the melody for “Christmas Time is Here” by the Vince Guaraldi Trio while you think about the forlorn little tree that Charlie Brown rescued.
A certain relation asked for some of my paintings to be shown and this is part of the reason for this website. I’m sure others reasons will develop but here’s the start. This will be the first on the new site. Yes, I know it isn’t Christmas today. I’ve chosen this one as the first because it looks full of promise… and spring thaw just around the corner. I love winter when there’s lots of snow to play in. Love it, love it, love it. But now we have slop and ice and yuck. I am very much ready for spring.