Monday, January 28, 2008

Avid Readers


Humans have always had rituals. We have ours. On Sunday mornings we gather in the living room to have coffee and breakfast. In winter, we light a fire. The animals love the ritual too, and join us. Here, the cats help my husband with reading Rolling Stone Magazine.
Pencil crayon on paper.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Last Night


I don't always get my sketches finished in one day. This one is a mental snapshot of last night's walk in the Hollidge Tract, York Regional Forest, on the East side, looking to the south west. The blazing sunset was a real bonus.
Pencil crayon on paper.

Evening Light


At this time of year, my walks often begin at sundown and end in the darkness. The light is always changing in ways the camera cannot capture.
This is York Regional Forest-Hollidge Tract; a view from the trail on the South East side.
Pencil crayon on paper.

Friday, January 18, 2008

...but is it art?





I remember with annoyance one of the first lessons learned at art college. A fellow student handed in a well-rendered portrait of a long-haired cat. While technically brilliant, with good composition, it was, due to subject matter alone, designated kitsch.
While portraits of people (of self and others), by tradition, fell instantly into the category of fine art, animals were an obvious taboo in a school that posed as a champion of artistic freedom.
Today I chose to give my dogs and myself equal treatment. We are all animals afterall.

Visitors from Up North

Redpolls are at home in the boreal forest, and occasionally migrate sout for the winter. This is the first year of seen them; they like the niger seed and feed with the goldfinches.
Unlike the mourning doves who are always willing to pose for a picture, these redpolls were moving targets. I had, at most, 60 seconds to scratch down my initial sketch. I finished the sketch from memory, while hoping they would return so I could fill in the details, but they stayed away for the remainder of the day. With the help of a collection of birding guides (none of which depicted the back of the bird) much guessing ensued.
Prismacolor pencil crayon on paper.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Secord Wildlife & Forest Preserve


I count myself privileged to live on the beautiful Oak Ridges Moraine. There are numerous hiking trails official and unofficial all nearby and accessible for walks. This image is part of the official Oak Ridges Moraine (ORTA) Hiking trail; part of the Secord Wildlife and Forest Preserve that likes just South of Goodwood, Ontario between the 3rd & 4th Concessions.
Prismacolor Pencil Crayon on paper.

Staying Connected


Email, MySpace, Blog, Website, FaceBook, Cell-phones, Land-lines...I'm sure I've missed some. Staying connected is quite complicated for us humans. For cats, however, it's a simple matter of weight, heat and physical presence.
Graphite on paper.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

January Thaw



















Pencil crayon on office paper.
I love snow, and was very sad to see it melting after six weeks of perfect ski conditions. The winters just keep getting warmer, but I won't use the GW word.
More views from my window. These were done on blue dot-matrix printer paper rescued from recycling. The blue background is perfect for the dull daylight conditions.

Violets
















Prismacolour pencil crayon, on one-side used office paper.
On dull January days, I look indoors for warmth and colour. I've been collecting trailing african violets for many years. Unlike the ones sold in grocery stores, trailers grow into glorious cascading piles of leaves and flowers.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

The view from my window.

PrismaColour Pencil Crayon on one-side used office paper.

This the view from my window. It is winter, it is beautiful; even the dirty windrow pushed back by the snowplow.
This is what is not shown: the hydro lines, my deck rail, the telephone poles, the snowmobiles belching exhaust, SUV's.

Frequent Visitor

Pencil Crayon on one-side used office paper.

Live models are hard to come by on a tight budget, but the local mourning doves are quite willing to pose in return for a scatter of cracked corn.

I drew 'em, then I ate 'em...

Image: PrismaColour Pencil Crayon on one-side used office paper

I purchased these mushrooms as a treat and promptly forgot about them. I found them later languishing in the fridge looking a little elderly. As I hate wasting food, I recycled them into a still life. The beige on beige colour scheme was a matter of simple expediency. Monochrome was the challenge and the reward was in the eating.
They were delicious with homemade yoghurt tatziki sauce.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

In the beginning...

In the beginning,
Startrek was my universe,
Mr. Spock my mentor,
Checkhov my first love.
The Federation was my parliament, and the galaxy my playground.

Things change. The stars have dimmed beneath the glare of the street lights beyond my window, technology has moved beyond my meager means, and Captain Kirk's image is eternally tarnished by shilling for laxatives.

I welcomed my first computer into my home with awe verging on worship. Its name was DarkStar. I memorized all of it's attributes, I learned its code, spoke it's lingo. I upgraded. And upgraded again, then lost the crashing dinosaur to bad-sectors. After its third incarnation, it lost its name, its mystery and its status. It is now simply a box. An expensive, energy sucking, hopelessly obsolete box. I have lost the faith.

I am, I solemnly declare, a Luddite. I prefer the stars above the trees to those on the screen. I want to feel the wind in my hair, not the whoosh of starships in hyperspace, and I want to smell damp earth after the rain. All the universe exists within our experience. Or, as my mother would say, "go play outside".

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Casual Connections




Kastle Kaos Drawbridge, is, was, and always will be a personal illustrated journal, and not a sales blog. For sales info check out my sales page or etsy store. I appreciate my readers immensely; those of you that I know of, I consider my friends. If I don't already know you, I would love to.

Here now is a static page created just for you.

I'm on Facebook now: you can join me there at: Ingrid Schmelter; I'll be happy to friend you there. If you're not into Facebook and social networking, you can see just the art, and only art on my Facebook Page Photo Gallery. It's accessible to any and all without any sign ups or logins.

You can chat with me on twitter @KaslkaosArt I'm always willing to talk about birds, weather and any other nonsense. If you happen to be online, I'm happy to engage in real-time chatting through twitter. You can get my attention with 'replies to' or private messaging.
You'll also find me at Wetcanvas Forums; of course, my user name is kaslkaos.

You can also find me at Atlas Quest, user name Ondine (this is my letterboxing name).

Email, incase you haven't already noticed is the right hand corner of the Blog Banner (Title Image)
You can also find me at Tim Hortons in Stouffville, in the nearby woods, and every so often on the shores of Lake Superior where a part of my soul will always linger.

PS. I'm still on dial-up, so while I try my best to visit your wonderful blogs on a regular basis, much depends on the library and other stolen moments of high speed access. Someday, I will be rich and infamous and will have my own high speed connection but that day is not today.
Image: graphite drawing done, of course, while sitting up in bed.

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