Thursday, December 9, 2010

Does anyone even know where Smithers is???

Another Shameless Plug for my Art

The News of the day is that  the Smithers Art Gallery is launching 'Christmas in the Gallery', a new endeavour which offers unique, one-of-a-kind works for sale.  From December 7th to 24th, the usual exhibit space will be transformed into a gift shop featuring a lovely selection of RiverWalker Artworks!.

That’s right folks… my Kayak print.. right there on the advertisement poster in full colour.   

So what do you think!  I’m pretty excited about this latest foray into the public eye.  Especially since the Gallery will be selling authentic RiverWalker Arts Original Watercolours, Matted Prints in three different sizes and everyone’s all time favourite:  Art Cards!

On the evening of Friday December 10th, all are invited to drop by the gallery between and to share some Christmas cheer and enjoy some live music.

If you happen to be up in the area please do drop by.  
The 'Christmas in the Gallery' Gift Shop Tues. - Saturday
 Smithers Art Gallery
At the corner of Highway 16 & Main Street
Smithers, BC
(250) 847-3898

Monday, November 29, 2010

fighting back against the encroaching darkness

Ghost stories told around campfires begin with the words  " it was a dark and stormy night".  Everyone hears the words and settles down relaxes and opens themselves up for the things that go bump in the night.  but for me almost every night is a dark and stormy night.  The wind howls and drives the rain pelting against the world and obscuring the streetlamps into a diaphanous glow refracted off the tiny ripples that punctuate the sheets of water running down the windows. This morning is much the same.  Although technically sunrise was at 8:45, it is well past 9am and still dark, the forecast reads : Rain. Amount 25 mm. Wind southeast 80 to 100 km/h. Temperature steady near 6'C.

 the steady march towards the winter solstice when the earth's axial tilt is furthest away from the sun brings us shorter days and longer nights,  the continual cloud cover and constant rains enhance the claustrophobic feeling of perpetual darkness.  The depressive psychological effects of winter and damaged circadian rhythm begins taking its toll on individuals in the form of tiredness, coldness and malaise.

In some sort of an effort to fight back against the encroaching darkness we garland our homes in coloured lights, and host gatherings for friends and family. The other thing that occasional breaks up the winter darkness are the brightly lit halls of art, theatre and music. Drawn like moths to a flame, folk enter the glow of the lobby and shake off the wet, stamp feet and rub hands together. They put up their coats and enter an escape... a bit of magic.   I am going to participate in making some of that winter magic. 

 I've accepted an invitation to display my art at the Smithers art gallery. Just for December.  From December 7th to 24th, the Gallery will be transformed into a Winter display of unique possibilities, a juried exhibit and sale of fine art...

in anticipation I've put together a couple lovely miniature Christmas paintings:

plumes de neige
©RiverWalker Arts
Original Watercolour (4.5 x 6.5 inches)  $55

Les premiers flocons sont quelque chose de féerique.

He was made of snow
But the children know
How he came to life one day

O Tannenbaum
 ©RiverWalker Arts
Original Watercolour (4.5 x 8.5inches)  $55

O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,
Thy candles shine out brightly!
Each bough doth hold its tiny light,
That makes each toy to sparkle bright

Important note:

I have also just printed 500 art cards.  37 different Prints to choose from including these two lovely new Christmas Images.

 If you are interested in purchasing any of my works as art cards please feel free to email me at  All cards are 5x7 inches and cost $5 plus shipping.  See for image choices. 

Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth, for the touch of a friendly hand and for a talk beside the fire:  it is the time for home.”  ~Edith Sitwell

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

facing a break from 20 years of tradition

The snow is falling.  The world is dusted in white.  The children squeal and run with mittens trailing from coat sleeves.  It is still November but the cold has brought about an early Christmas spirit despite the perpetual grumblings about weather.  If it is not too hot, or too rainy then it’s too cold and what is this white stuff anyway. 

I have decided to enjoy all weather.. although days of sleet on end can get a bit depressing.  This white stuff has got me thinking about my annual Christmas card.  A tradition I started in 1990 with a lopsided candle ringed with pine boughs and bits of holly.  Since then I have put out 20 different Christmas cards...  this year I’ve decided to go bold and paint a whimsical scene with watercolours, breaking off all tradition, as previously all my cards are based in black and white ink.  So card # 21 will grace the world this year is a splash of unprecedented colour... now if I can only get it printed in time!
Here are  the cards in my collection...
©RiverWalker Arts 1990

©RiverWalker Arts 1991

©RiverWalker Arts 1992

©RiverWalker Arts 1993

©RiverWalker Arts 1994

©RiverWalker Arts 1995

©RiverWalker Arts 1996

©RiverWalker Arts 1997

©RiverWalker Arts 1998

©RiverWalker Arts 1999

©RiverWalker Arts 2000

©RiverWalker Arts 2000

©RiverWalker Arts 2001

©RiverWalker Arts 2002

©RiverWalker Arts 2003

©RiverWalker Arts 2004

©RiverWalker Arts 2005

©RiverWalker Arts 2006

©RiverWalker Arts 2007

©RiverWalker Arts 2008

©RiverWalker Arts 2009

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

a place of words - difficult to spell and harder to pronounce.

Halloween is over. The Christmas season has not arrived… and so we find ourselves in a frigid November.  The sky is grey and dark, the temperatures are sub-zero…or maybe I’m just poorly adjusting to the weather after a fall vacation to Hawaii.  The Big Island to be specific. 

© RiverWalker Arts

The temperature was 28 degrees and didn’t vary from that except as we got higher in elevation heading towards the domain of Madame Pele, Hawaiian Volcano and Fire Goddess. Known as She Who Shapes the Land, Pele the expression and embodiment of divine creative power. She is the flame of passion and the fire of purpose, the energy of dynamic action and the glowing essence of eternal and profound love.  Pele has been making her home in Halemaumau, the fire pit of the Kilauea crater on the island of Hawaii. As we wound our way around the island slowly gaining elevation and making our way up Kilauea past the current eruption that has been oozing lava from the Pu’u‘Ō’ō vent like an unhealed wound which smothered the towns of Kalapana and Kaimū before it reached the sea. 

The air was lightly chilled and began to smell of sulphur as we walked through an ancient lava tube and set out for the lava fields along the chain of craters left in Pele’s wake.  The barren landscape was dotted by tiny shoots of green vegetation clinging against all odds to the sharp glassy black rock. 

Goddess Pele
painting by Arthur Johnsen
There was an eerie feeling to knowing that the very ground beneath my feet was younger than I, and an admiration at the tenacity of odd tree able to nourish itself in the rock.  As we approached the crater the smell of sulphur intensified and indeed Kilauea’s main crater has been busy spewing suffer dioxide since an explosion of dust and rock in 2008. 

But Madame Pele can be found in more places that the crater of Kilauea .. she appears sometimes as a tall beautiful woman and at other times as a frail old crone.  Of course I’m not sure if I actually was graced with the presence of the divine…. But the water felt like heaven… cool on the skin and yet warm enough to swim in all day.  And so I swam with the fishes and floated among the corals…I soaked in the humid air, revelled in the clear skies and the sun that shone down upon me all week. but all good things come to an end and so we returned from the lands of molten rock with it’s goddess possessing  the creative force to transform and rebuild the landscape and our lives.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Bushwackin' Blisters

I spent today in a pair of “corks”.

Wikipedia defines “corks” as follows:  Caulk boots (pronounced "cork" and usually called "corks") are leather or rubber  nail-soled boots worn by lumberjacks in the timber-producing regions of the Pacific Northwest and Canada. (information gathered by thousands of unqualified people might not be the most accurate of sources but it serves my purposes most of the time… ) Aside from the  questionable accuracy of the wikipedia world.. the definition here is roughly correct.  (note that they are also marketed as chainsaw boots)

What is poorly described in any definition – including the websites that sell these frightful looking things is the male bias of the logging industry  …. corks don’t come in ladies sizes… so I’ve been sporting a pair of drastically over sized steel toed, rubber boots with steel spikes on the bottom that just about reach my knee… and weigh close to 5lbs each.  Oh yes.. you heard that right.  My poor little feet need 2 pairs of wool socks plus a pair of  quilted slippers called bama-boots just to keep these things from falling off my feet.

Despite the ill-fit and excessive weight of these gastly items walking through the slash of felled logs, root-wads and heaps of branches on a set of dangerous looking steel spikes sure come in handy.  Imagine a series of giant thumbtacks sticking out of the bottoms of your shoes...   The tracktion is great, sticking to slippery logs like velcro, and leaving the coolest looking footprints. That being said - The slimy rock in the creek …. Still deathly slippery…(thumbtacks remember.. Big ones..)  with the added bonus of the weight of these orange monsters and you’ve got a recipe for drowned rat on your hands.
photo off internet.... photo of me in the ORANGE beasts
I've been traipsing around in to follow at later date!

Today I spent the day in corks…. But after a full day tramping around in the bushes with my corks… I’ve got sore feet, blistered ankles… and I’m not exactly dry or mud free.  The upside however..  I wasn’t in the office.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

It is grey here. A thousand shades of grey. The mists blow in off the water, and hang heavy in town, and around it.  In the distance, if you can see that far, trees, totem poles and mountain peaks rise up out of the floating mists in shades of dark grey against the lighter grey of the sky.  Heavy leaden clouds block out the sun and the days never truly lighten but remain dark.  Nothing casts a shadow and yet everything is cast in shadow and dampness.  The grey rock itself seems to seep water as if there is entirely too much moisture.  Today it rains.... driving sideways, a gale warning on the VHF radio, it rains down hard, as if the sky itself liquefies and crashes down on the earth.  The land soaks up what it can and what the land can not hold tumbles down through the glacial rivers heading out to sea. 

The Wind Howls and drives the rain sideways, thundering in sheets down the window panes obscuring the form of everything beyond it, tuning the world into a kaleidoscope of grey obscured green.  My yard is a swamp of soggy green moss mostly.. and what is known as a liverwort – a moss like substance that grows in virtual darkness semi submerged in the bog that is my yard... I’m cold.  The Damp kind of cold that makes your bones ache and no matter how much tea you drink you still feel chilled and your fingers cramp on the keyboard. 

I’m not truly surprised by all this.  It will continue to rain solidly until by some miraculous twist of nature the temperature will plunge well below freezing and the sun will peak out from behind the clouds for a day... maybe 3 before the rains come again.  But today... and maybe tomorrow... it is starting to get to me... maybe it’s because I made the error of looking at the long range forecast....

© RiverWalker Arts
Today: Rain Heavy at times. Wind southeast 70 km/h
Tonight: Rain. Wind southeast 70 km/h this evening and after midnight.
Monday: Showers. High 8.
Tuesday: Rain. High 8.
Wednesday: Rain. Windy
Thursday: Showers. High 8.
Friday: Rain heavy at times. High 7.
Saturday: Rain. Windy. High 8. 


Think PinK

“Think Pink”

Print from an Original Watercolour
by RiverWalker Arts

In Honour of October being Breast Cancer awareness month.  and as a commission for a co-worker.... 

dedicated to all women who are or have been afflicted with the devastating disease known as Breast Cancer.
Each year, thousands of Canadians are touched by breast cancer. In 2010, an estimated 23,200 women in Canada will be diagnosed with breast cancer.  On average, 445 Canadian women will be diagnosed with breast cancer every week.  In 2010, an estimated 5,300 women and 50 men will die from breast cancer in Canada. The vulnerable pink colour stands not only to remind us of the battle against breast cancer, but the brightness of pink at the same time stands for hope, and strength. 
And to all those out there still fighting, make manifest the glory of the earth and the stars that is within you, become a conduit of grace, beautiful and strong, dance and touch the earth…