Friday, September 11, 2015

The Fish Wife—Mermaids and fishermen

I spent a lot of time swimming in the Gaspe, everyday, in fact.  It’s no surprise that mermaids came up in my sketchbook. This linocut was my husbands pick from the bunch. So now it’s carved and available on Etsy.
As for my holiday, it is not fading fast from memory, but when I look at my photo’s, they seem to miss the mark of really being there. Maybe that’s what makes art still relevant in this day and age of photography.  How does it feel to swim in the ocean, to battered about by waves, to be chilled to the bone, or cradled in warm salt water, spied upon by seals, caressed by strands of kelp, taste sweet rain and seawater in one breath both at once? Only art can answer that.
I did not go swimming in this. It was a stormy day, and in the evening, the waves rolled in like continuous thunder, big as houses I like to say, or at least the height of a garage door as they swelled and rose up out of the mist.  Earlier in the day, I swam at a sandy beach (psst, Cap Aux Os—it’s a secret) that was serving up great big rollers in the face of an incoming squall. It was there that I acquired an audience of seals and people while I body-surfed in the pouring rain. Those waves were nice, mostly gentle, and surprisingly warm.
I’ve since been swimming again, this time in Lake Ontario, Rouge Beach and Bluffers Park Beach, stops on a bicycle tour with husband along the Toronto waterfront trail.  So, well, it’s no wonder I make a lot of mermaid art.  It’s hard not to feel some affinity with the theme.
Forillon National Park, Bay of Gaspe, historic preservation of a fisherman’s home and outbuildings. Note the ramp to the sea. Boats get hauled up the cliff with a winch.
And a view from within.  Natural light. Imagine that on a cold winters day, music, light, comfy chairs.
& Boats and Nets.  The north side of the park is set up as an outdoor museum, with short hikes between buildings.  A good way to spend a rainy day.


Jennifer Rose Phillip said...

very nice mermaid :)

what a cool looking shoreline with the jagged rocks sticking out :D Never swam in Lake Ontario, was always told as a kid we would end up mutated from the dirty water :p

kaslkaos said...

Thanks Jennifer. And, yep, I remember Lake Ontario back in my day--grey green and murky. I actually thought that was the normal colour of a great lake, ugh. I never went swimming there when I was a kid. Toronto beaches have cleaned up nicely since then, and the water is actually swimming pool blue on many days.


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