Monday, 30 May 2016

timing timing timing

No doubt you are familiar with the expression 'location location location', usually in relation to real estate.  I am discovering, that for me, it's usually about timing, rather than place.  About doing it now, rather than postponing for a myriad of reasons.

Not that I am actually recommending the quick decisions I made in purchasing my five homes....making offers to realtors the very same day I first viewed the properties.

 I found out later that the magical 30 acres on the Cowichan River that I had bought for myself and my 9 and 11 year old daughters in 1979, had been carefully researched and studied for the better part of a year by neighbours.  They had finally decided to purchase this Duncan property, when 'oops!',  I saw it one morning and owned it a few  days later.

When a friend saw a for sale sign being placed at a Thompson Avenue home one morning 13 years ago, she phoned me in Duncan to alert me. The property hadn't yet been listed. I called our realtor and Brian and I sped to Victoria to view the house.  As I approached the front stairs, I mumbled something about perhaps being able to make them less steep as we aged, and then, as we entered, I envisioned a particular piece of our pine furniture in the entrance hall!

At about 9 o'clock that evening,  we learned that our offer had been accepted.

As I reread this, I am seeing beyond this seemingly audacious behavior, and noticing, instead, how I moved with trust.  Trust in my judgement. Trust in my heart. And an understanding that the timing was perfect.

Five or six months ago I began tidying the cluttered areas in our studio that were mine.  First my paints. After packing up the still useable jars of paint, I gave away containers of Golden mediums-  many unopened, most I had never  tried.

Phyllis was thrilled and I had one less box to keep.   Perfect!

Several of my friends were aghast when I said I was finished painting.  My enthusiasm was over, my images stale.  It was time to move on.

Cartons of unsorted magazine images were the next target.  I looked through the source of my many collages page by page.  A relatively small number I deemed too precious to part with, some I gave to a friend who teaches art at the Pain Clinic, and many more filled the recycle bin.  And then, unable to dump the last 1/2 carton of wonderful collected scraps, I fashioned about 125 bookmarks from them.

 These, I either gave away or sold for $2. each, contributing over $125 to the Syrian Refugee Fund at Congregation Emanu-El.

Through this cleanse, I discovered lovely small collages I had created, deemed not-good-enough at the time.  Now, 10 years later, I delight in these small treasures.

The bookmark frenzy showed me very clearly that the painful arthritis in my right hand was a significant reason to move away from collage work.  It was time.

Four less boxes.

Paintings I no longer wanted were given away or trashed. Favourites were saved- for now.

The most difficult culling was in regards to my precious bits of rusted metal.

I was bonded to these old bolts, springs and unknowns more closely than to any of my other treasures.  I posted photographs of them on my Facebook page looking for fellow scrap horders, but finally Brian brought them to the Oak Bay dump and left them on the give-away shelf.

At the end of the day the remainders are tossed into their bins.

He also brought in my eight circular saw blades.

I gave ten of my old watches to a brilliant artist, Kathy Ross.

More paper into the recycle bin: sketches from figure drawing classes in Duncan, early oil pastels, abstract pencil rubbings and old matt board frames, cut to fit long- ago collages.

From these drawers, I selected and cut all variety of paper to box up for our grandkids' Chanukah gift. Linden and Stella are both remarkable artists.  I gave paper to a friend who has shown amazing talent as she begins her artistic journey. And more paper is waiting.


     timing: collected in its skeleton state

Finally, the studio had lost its clutter.  (no comment here about how our basement fared in this process!)

Brian meticulously mended the pock-marked walls, and, after painting the storage shelves and scrubbing the floor, he transformed the studio into a magnificent small gallery!

The time had come for my first photography exhibit, joyously shared with Patrice Snopkowski.

timing: the cottonwood seeds, before that evenings rain

   timing: two days later, Saanich
turned in their garden bed for the winter

   timing: beauty captured in the morning's perfect light
                         at the dykes in Steveston

timing timing timing


  1. omg I love the photo of the leaf with the water drops! Beautiful. I have to see if I have space for that somewhere.... maybe in a smaller format. I'll let you know as I'd like to buy that one if I can find the perfect spot. xo

  2. Your blog was great. Like a mini autobiography of your life as an artist, and where you are going