The Art of Anne Henvey

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Square Foot Paintings 2018

Posted on 13 November, 2018 at 18:10 Comments comments (0)

The Loft Gallery Square Foot Show ended last Sunday, November 11, so I'm going to share with you my submissions for this year.  I submitted four pieces to this very popular show, and I will have no inkling as to whether they were sold until the end of November.  The Gallery requires this time to get all the paperwork completed, and as there was over 700 pieces, it's totally understandable - it must be a most daunting task.

The first painting I'm going to share is one I called 'Early Macs'.   Some years ago, our neighbour in Meaford presented us with a huge box of MacIntosh apples, locally grown.  Meaford is in the middle of apple growing country, with many lovely orchards surrounding the town.  I took a couple of photographs of the box from the top and saved them to paint later.  I've always had quite a lot of success with apple paintings, and painted and sold one from the same series of photos quite soon after taking them.   

 

  The next one Is 'Chinese Lanterns'.  I've always loved these unusual plants.  I grew them one year and was fascinated by the formation of the pods.  I've been known to draw tiny Jack O'Lantern type faces on them as they remind me of miniature pumpkins.  They're certainly a very beautiful representation of Autumn.

The third painting was suggested to me by my daughter.  We were working on a wedding, which featured the wonderfully soft foliage of Dusty Miller.  We had stripped the lower leaves from the stems to use in the wedding party bouquets and it seemed such a shame to just discard them.  We placed them in water and saw that the silvery leaves made such a lovely display in a vase just by themselves.  I took a photograph to paint later.  I added the ladybird as a tiny point of interest to liven up the piece.  Another very popular subject for paintings are ladybirds, but I left her out of the title, calling this piece simply 'Dusty Miller'.

The final and perhaps my favourite of this year's Square Foot submissions is what I called 'Garden Tomatoes'.  I've painted tomatoes in the past but I'm particularly proud of this one, I felt the red really popped from the darkness of the background foliage and contrasted with the small green tomato.  Of course I had to add some water drops!  I felt that was the final touch to this piece.  

I hope you enjoy seeing some of my process in creating this year's square foot pieces.  I'm looking forward to finding out if they've found their forever homes.

Have a blessed week.

T'is The Season

Posted on 6 November, 2018 at 19:00 Comments comments (0)

I had last Monday off last week, feeling fairly normal until later in the evening when I caught the inevitable pre-winter cold.  I experienced the full treatment.....starting with the irritated, scratchy throat which escalated into a full-blown rawness that can only be described as having the inside of one's throat thoroughly scraped with a rough bottle brush.  My appetite quickly disappeared and I could only think about cups of hot tea.  Coffee is off the table once I get the slightest inkling that a cold is developing.  I decided to stay at home the next day and gathering my pillow, blanket, iPod and phone I migrated from bed to the couch.  I shivered miserably, stuffy and feeling extremely sorry for myself surrounded by my box of tissues and plastic grocery bag (for the used ones) and throat lozenges.  I spent the day huddled there, clutching my tissues and peering blearily from my blanket cocoon at various TV programmes getting up only to replenish my cup with strong tea or hot Ribena.  As the day progressed the blowing and coughing began; my nose was like a tap needing a new washer and rapidly became sore and red from the constant wiping.  Coughing began a thing to dread as my muscles began to rebel at the new and constant activity.  Sleep was impossible even though I felt exhausted.  The bags that were under my eyes could have held a weeks worth of groceries.  This continued over the next few days.  Unfortunately I had to return to work.  Having to keep on going into the big walk-in cooler felt like a trip to the Arctic and I bundled myself in a thick hoodie coughing and wheezing my way through the days.  I couldn't wait until Friday.  However, I'm happy to report that I am pretty well recovered as I write this.  There's usually a silver lining and in this case it manifested as a glorious bottle of elderberry syrup.  My son made this discovery as he was searching for something to ward off the evils that were emanating from my person....and came home with this remarkable product.  Not only is this syrup packed with vitamins, but it's pleasant tasting as well!  Win-win.

I'm happy to report that I'm feeling much better today.  It's over!!

Have a blessed week and stay healthy!




Hallowe'en Is Here!

Posted on 31 October, 2018 at 21:45 Comments comments (0)

Happy Hallowe'en, Blessed Samhain. This is the time of year when it's a common thought that the veil is thinning between the two worlds, the now and the afterlife. I will place my light into my upper hallway window on Hallowe'en Night and leave it open a crack to let my ancestors pay a visit. I love this time of year and decorate my house with all the traditional ghouls, ghosts and spiders, (although I'm quite terrified of the real versions of the latter). A favourite thing for me is to carve Jack O' Lanterns from pumpkins and this year I have three different shaped ones. They remained expressionless while a little snow fell on them Saturday night....I'll have to give them some faces soon. I enjoy the Trick Or Treaters but unfortunately as I live on a court I don't get many customers. Kids are wise nd realise that there's not many houses on my little court and sometimes avoid coming down. This also leads to my ingestion of too much chocolate and salty snacks.  Update:  Only ten little Trick Or Treaters knocked at my door this Hallowe'en!

Exciting weekend coming up; the Square Foot Show opens in Thornbury this Saturday. Next week I'll post pictures of this year's submissions. I don't like to post them until the show has opened. Just a self-imposed rule of mine. It's a mixture of superstition and respect for the show. I've just ordered some more square foot canvasses from my local art supply shop in anticipation of next year's show. I took advantage of Curry's Art Supply's generous "free shipping" promotion. I love Curry's. It's such a great source of not only terrific art supplies but also inspiration. So many great products to choose from!

Another event happening this weekend is the Christmas show at Ormsby's Garden Centre. I'm sorry to be missing this one, but unfortunately there's just too much on the go this time. I've participated in all the previous shows except one, which took place too close to Mother's Day for me to be able to leave my floral work. Wishing all my fellow Meaford Artisans much success and letting them know I'll miss them.

Last Sunday I looked after my sweet little grandson for the afternoon while his parents attended an event. He was very sweet and happy. He has added so much to my life, I can't imagine him not being here even though he's just five months old. He's captured all our hearts with total unawareness.

Have a blessed week....and enjoy Hallowe'en however you choose to observe it.

A Weekend Of Guilty Pleasure

Posted on 23 October, 2018 at 18:20 Comments comments (0)

This past weekend I traveled north and on the way submitted four pieces to The Square Foot Show at The Loft Gallery in Thornbury, which is the town before Meaford.  It was, as always a pleasant experience and I look forward to the opening night which is November 3.  The show runs until November 11. It's an annual event and is immensely popular, so much so that the Gallery issues numbered tickets (free) and have to call people in sequence as they wait in a neighbouring cafe. 

I must admit that was the most I did all weekend.  I'd been feeling as though I was coming down with some sort of ailment, which couldn't seem to  manifest itself or decide whether it was a cold or 'flu.  I might add that I don't take the annual 'flu shot.  I'm not against vaccinations usually but I've always avoided this one because I don't agree that it's effective.  That aside, I felt tired and energy-less so spent most of Sunday morning into early afternoon in bed watching DVD's of Outlander, which enthralled me totally.  I was sorry when the last episode ended.  However, I am not used to spending so much time abed. I felt guilty and the need to get up and do something.  So up I got and sat in the living room.  I made myself a hot toddy of lemon with a dash of Johnny Walker and while I sat sipping it I spotted my box of Downton Abbey DVD's.  These were given to me along with the Outlander DVD's as a Mother's Day gift, but I hadn't had the chance to watch them before. I slipped in the first disc and tucked myself up with my blanket and toddy and binge-watched the first five episodes until dinner time, which was thankfully prepared for me. 

That was my weekend.  I feel much better albeit slightly guilty at not doing anything productive.  I guess every now and then it's okay to indulge yourself in a do-nothing weekend.  In my defense, I had just gone through a pretty busy week, both at the flower shop and at home.  I'd had two weddings to get done at work, and in the evenings I had been working hard on those square foot paintings.  That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Have a wonderful and blessed week.


The Butter Is Hard.

Posted on 17 October, 2018 at 18:50 Comments comments (0)

Yes it's that time of year.  I always leave butter in a dish on the kitchen counter so that it's easier to spread.  I can tell when the weather is cooler by the consistency of the butter in the dish and lately it's been harder to spread.  Thank goodness I use only rye bread, which doesn't tear if you're attempting to spread a rock hard piece of butter on a slice.  Nothing worse than a sandwich full of holes and dotted with lumps of unspread butter.  So...the weather has cooled since my last entry.  In fact I've had to cancel weekend plans with my daughter and new grandson because suddenly the great Lake Effect Snow Machine has decided to spring into action dumping a possible ten centimetres in Meaford.  So far there hasn't been the dreaded scraping of the windscreen yet....one morning there was a bit of ice but it came off easily with my wipers and a squirt or two of washer fluid. I've had to cave in and fire up the ol' furnace so at least the wearing of socks to bed is no longer necessary.  Mornings are dark and chilly, making the act of getting up that little bit harder.  I feel the need to snuggle up with my cats and the thoughts of homemade soup and pies clog my thoughts. I've never quite figured out why it is that the winter months seem so much longer than the summer ones.

I've been busy working on some pieces for the Square Foot Show happening in early November.  I have one more to finish, which I must get to right now.

 I leave you with the more positive thought that if we didn't have the winter, we wouldn't appreciate the summer!

Have a blessed week.


The Butter Is Hard.

Posted on 17 October, 2018 at 18:50 Comments comments (1)

Yes it's that time of year.  I always leave butter in a dish on the kitchen counter so that it's easier to spread.  I can tell when the weather is cooler by the consistency of the butter in the dish and lately it's been harder to spread.  Thank goodness I use only rye bread, which doesn't tear if you're attempting to spread a rock hard piece of butter on a slice.  Nothing worse than a sandwich full of holes and dotted with lumps of unspread butter.  So...the weather has cooled since my last entry.  In fact I've had to cancel weekend plans with my daughter and new grandson because suddenly the great Lake Effect Snow Machine has decided to spring into action dumping a possible ten centimetres in Meaford.  So far there hasn't been the dreaded scraping of the windscreen yet....one morning there was a bit of ice but it came off easily with my wipers and a squirt or two of washer fluid. I've had to cave in and fire up the ol' furnace so at least the wearing of socks to bed is no longer necessary.  Mornings are dark and chilly, making the act of getting up that little bit harder.  I feel the need to snuggle up with my cats and the thoughts of homemade soup and pies clog my thoughts. I've never quite figured out why it is that the winter months seem so much longer than the summer ones.

I've been busy working on some pieces for the Square Foot Show happening in early November.  I have one more to finish, which I must get to right now.

 I leave you with the more positive thought that if we didn't have the winter, we wouldn't appreciate the summer!

Have a blessed week.


Preparing For Christmas

Posted on 9 October, 2018 at 19:15 Comments comments (0)

This year as well as my annual return to the Meaford Museum Holiday Gift Sale in November I've decided to do a couple of shows that I've never done before.   For the first two weekends in December I'll be at The Marsh Street Centre in Thornbury, and Nottawa Hall in Nottawa (just outside Collingwood) respectively.  I'm quite excited at the prospect of these two new venues.  The Marsh Street Centre was suggested to me by a fellow artisan at Ormsby a couple of weeks ago and I became aware of the Nottawa Hall event via a Facebook message sent to me by the organiser.  

These two shows put me in a holiday mood and I painted three paintings and had them printed as my new Christmas line of cards.  

I am also preparing for The Square Foot Show which is taking place once again at The Loft Gallery in Thornbury in early November.  I worked on this on the weekend and again today.  I am always excited about this show.  It's always very well attended and last year I was very lucky to have sold three of my submissions.  This year I plan to have four pieces ready.

At this very moment it is still very warm outside, quite a change from the cool and somewhat wet weekend.  It's currently in the low twenties and a little humid.  Tomorrow is predicted to be another warm day with an actual humidex reading in the thirties.  This weather makes it feel a bit odd to be thinking about Christmas, when the outside air is contradictory to the date on the calendar.  Not that I'm complaining!  I've mentioned a few times in this blog my opinion of winter.  I'll enjoy all the warm temperatures that Mother Nature is prepared to give us.

Have a blessed week.





The Best Laid Plans

Posted on 2 October, 2018 at 18:35 Comments comments (0)

Everything went pretty much to plan last Friday; I had previously informed my boss I’d like an early exit so I’d miss the rush hour traffic heading up from the city to Meaford, where I was participating in the annual Meaford Artisans Fall Show. I filled up my car on the way to work. To my delight my paycheque had been duly processed and waited for me that morning. There was quite a lot of work to get finished but I soldiered on and was finished by 1:15, just fifteen minutes later than I’d hoped. Things were looking good, even the weather was on my side; it was sunny, warm and beautiful.

The night before I had charged my tablet and iPod, packed four bags with groceries, my clothes chosen for the show and all my paraphernalia needed to process sales. I only had to grab the bags, change my work clothes and head up north.

To speed things up I decided to just change my work shirt and leave my work pants on but change from my dirty work shoes into my “good” bright white running shoes. This will be relevant later on. I popped an extra sweater into the clothes bag. I’d need that once I arrived at the grocery store in Meaford where I planned to buy a loaf of fresh bread. My daughter and son with their 4 month old son were arriving later that evening for the weekend and I wanted something nice and fresh for the lasagne dinner Saturday night that I planned. It was frozen vegetable lasagne but I was impressed with myself that I’d remembered to bring it at all as well as the cream for coffee and the salad.

The sun was shining brilliantly as I tuned into The Beatles channel on my car radio and headed north, however it wasn’t long before I noticed a few dark clouds. I called my daughter to chat on the way. I felt relatively cheerful as my daughter reassured me that rain wasn’t in the forecast although the sky was definitely getting darker as I drove. I was about halfway when the rain began in earnest. I looked in dismay at my car’s outside thermometer and saw that the temperature had dropped by a full ten degrees. I wasn’t worried about the show because it was being held in a greenhouse which stays beautifully warm even in the cool months, but the unloading process and the trek from the muddy back lot did concern me slightly. But I’d packed a warm outfit plus my boots. I’d be fine.

I finally arrived at the supermarket and reaching in the back seat to get my sweater discovered  that the bag with my clothes wasn’t there. In my minds eye I saw it sitting smugly on the kitchen counter at my house two hours south. I’d placed the other three bags near the door. It was okay I thought grabbing my phone and calling my daughter. It wasn’t a problem. They’d stop at my house and pick it up. Easy peasy.  I remembered whiIe speaking on the phone that hadn’t packed the boots anyway. I’d have been wearing my carefully chosen outfit with my bright white running shoes. I got to the house and as I was putting away my purchases I noticed I'd forgotten the bread that I'd stopped for in the first place, the phone rang. My ear was filled with a screaming (and I mean screaming) baby in the background with my daughter’s rather strained voice saying they’d have to pull off and see if they could comfort him. Poor little chap. Forty minutes passed. Another call with the same accompaniment of my grandson’s impressive vocal chords. It was decided the best course of action would be to turn back home and try again in the morning. A peculiar side note to this is that once they turned back my little grandson suddenly stopped. Perhaps he knew something and was warning them.  My clothes issue took a back burner as the main concern was with my family.

The following morning as I dressed in my Beatles T-shirt, an old Marvin The Martian hoody and my hastily washed work pants I admit I thought wistfully of my nice black sweater, grey pants and smart boots that I'd packed. I hastily pushed the thought aside and set off to the show.  At least I didn't have to wear the green-tinged Nikes that I use for work.  Thankfully the rain held off until I'd unloaded the car and parked it at the back.  It wasn't all that muddy or wet after all.

The show itself was fairly uneventful, that is to say nothing else went awry.  My daughter, her husband and their son came mid-morning and looking at my grandson's little face was enough to chase away the silly things I'd been worrying about.  I enjoyed seeing a lot of familiar faces and spent a great afternoon in the very pleasant atmosphere that is Ormsby's Garden Centre Greenhouse.  

Wishing you a blessed week.  


Dreams

Posted on 25 September, 2018 at 19:25 Comments comments (0)

"I think we dream so we don't have to be apart so long. If we're in each other's dreams, we can play together all night."

~ Calvin and Hobbes

I came across this quote on a Facebook page I follow called Wolf Conservation Center.  As the name suggests, they exist to preserve the wild wolf population in the United States, as well as raise awareness for the plight of these magnificent animals.  Sadly the quote accompanied the picture of an Arctic wolf, Atka, who recently passed away.  For days I couldn't get the words or the loss of such a beautiful creature out of my mind.  It struck such a note of sadness in me that I found myself close to tears at times.  However, upon reading the quote again it does give one a bit of hope, that through our dreams we can be anything, and see anyone, living or dead.  I'm certain that we receive "visits" from our departed loved ones, as I have often encountered my parents, especially my mother in my dreams.  On one particular occasion she reassured me that her and my father were fine and even kissed me goodnight.  I've also had visits from my darling cat Buster, who snuggled beside me one night.  Some of my dreams have been prophetic ones, usually to do with my personal relationships.  In our dreams we can fly, or conjure up entire towns that we've never visited before, meet famous people and if we're lucky receive advice on how to sort out our problems.  Sometimes dreams become nightmares, and upon waking with a pounding heart there's that huge sense of relief that it was only a dream, and hadn't actually happened.  Other times there's that disappointment that it hadn't happened.  I remember one such dream of winning a big prize in the lottery!  

I'm fascinated by the way that we are able to incorporate outside sounds into dreams.  For example, I often listen to my iPod if I'm having trouble falling asleep.  It's a mystery to me how our brains must work at lightning speed to be able to work out a dream around what song is on.  How could that happen? 

I often take inspiration from my dreams.  I've mentioned in a previous blog that my love of painting seahorses started by my dreaming about one.  When I woke from that dream I painted the image I had dreamed of and a whole series of seahorse paintings was born.  

The sentiment in this quote is really a beautiful yet poignant thought.  

Have a blessed week, and pleasant dreams.

Rest In Peace Atka.  

Summer! You Can Stay All Year!

Posted on 18 September, 2018 at 18:35 Comments comments (0)

It's been a hot summer and continues to be so.  I can't believe that we're already into the last weeks of September, it seems that the time just vanishes when one doesn't worry about wintery weather.

Don't get me wrong......I do like Autumn.  The Earth is preparing for the long sleep that is Winter with a vivid last hurrah of intense colour.  Nature clothes herself with, the oranges, rich reds and brilliant yellows, accented with splashes of purple are an artists' dream.  Paintings in autumn colours are very popular with people it seems.  I haven't painted much of those, perhaps that theme should be my next series of work.

However, it seems as though Summer isn't quite ready to depart  and is still treating us to very warm temperatures and brilliant sunshine.  Today, for example, it was 29C and the humidex was in the high thirties.  I'm still very happy that I haven't had to wear a sweater or jacket yet and still have the air conditioning on in the house.  I'm hoping that this warm trend continues for a while yet, although I do love the cosiness of Autumn. I renew my fondness for cooking and baking once the weather is cooler and enjoy preparing thick vegetable soups and stews.  There are no thoughts of those meals right now.  

Have a blessed week.


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