Last month I had the immense privileged of traveling to the North West Territories for a week to participate in an artist’s symposium. Aurora Arts Society graciously invited me to be a part of their week-long creative event known as Art’s Week. I instructed a simple workshop on altered books, gave a little artist’s talk about my practice and how to set up your own shop on Etsy, and was also part of a panel of talented artists and business people who spoke about marketing yourself and your work. Rubbing elbows with “my people” and spending a week fully immersed in creative activity was such a well needed burst of wind in my sails. Spending a lot of time with one of my dearest friends, Marcus, from my BFA days at ACAD, was the true highlight though. It was so wonderful to see his daily life first hand, meet the wonderful folks he calls friends, and see why the North has stolen his heart. Driving through the forests in Kyle’s Jeep, searching for roadkill to use in Marc’s practice, digging around for treasures at the dump, and watching the aurora dance in the night sky were some of the best parts of my adventure. I felt truly blessed to have seen the North amidst a change in season; the landscape was absolutely alive with color. I am incredibly grateful to have been presented with such an amazing artistic opportunity, not to mention the trip of a lifetime. Thank you so much to Aurora Arts Society, Marcus Jackson, and all of the Northerners who I had the absolute pleasure of meeting!
… Oh & you are too! But seriously, yews are gorgeously impressive plants. Taxus Canadensis (Canadian Yew) is a conifer native to North America, thriving in swampy woods, ravines, riverbanks and on lake shores. Yew is also referred to as American Yew or Ground-Hemlock. This plant is actually classified as a shrub, although with a strong upright central leader, they can grow up to 3 meters high, making it easy for them to masquerade as trees. Honestly though, all the botany aside, I mostly just love yews for their thick curling bark that reveals gorgeous shades of red hiding underneath and the sprouting of new branches. Hello, texture overload!