When my parents decided to move their young family from Toronto, where I was born, to a farm in Northern Ontario, the change was abrupt, but very welcome. Suddenly, we were surrounded by fresh air, quiet, acres of farmland and the magnetic appeal of unexplored wilderness.
There were rocks to climb with tiny caves waiting to be noticed, paths in the woods that led to a deep, blue river, vast fields to run in and a creek that was home to lily pads and frogs.
My childhood adventures, joys, and love for the wildness of Northern Ontario were greatly missed when I had to leave, but the memories never left me.
Traditionally, in art, canvas has been used as a flat support system for paint. If, however, canvas threads are carefully loosened from the tight weave and gently freed, the canvas is no longer flat as multiple textures begin to emerge in small and large areas. It was a surprise and delight to me to discover the beauty of these textures and also realize how they resembled grasses, ferns and vines.
When natural items were then added, such as twigs or stones, the reference to nature was clear. My method of working recognizes the potential of canvas as an art medium, and reality as a given; whereas, the goal of traditional painting is to create the illusion of reality. Most of all, even though I still love to paint, my present work makes me feel closer to nature.
Twigs, branches, stones and berries are all familiar to me, just as they were when I was a child, many years ago.