I’ve been creating new work for a diverse set of reasons recently – a plein air painting session in Miles Canyon; a friend’s daughter who calls the High Arctic home; an exploration of the human face; and the opportunity to honour the bravery of those who fight cancer on a daily basis. I finally took the time today to release a new set of prints from this work which you can find on my Etsy site (if you are interested in the originals you can give me a shout – two of the four are still available). I wanted to give you a glimpse into the story of these four pieces here:
The Gold was created for the project Inspired by the Canyon. The project involved a set of artists working outside in Miles Canyon, near Whitehorse, Yukon, to create work inspired by the natural and human history of the area. Miles Canyon formed a formidable obstacle for those who were heading north for the Klondike Gold Rush, destroying rafts, supplies, and sometimes lives, in its rapids. The poetry of Robert Service makes up the basalt canyon walls in the piece, along with the larger quote, which links to the golden girl in the forest, one of the original girls who called the Klondike home during this tumultuous period of the region’s history. I wanted to create a piece that spoke to what drove men north, the experiences that shaped their characters along the way, and what caused them to stay once they made it.
Northern Red Riding Hood was designed for a friend’s eight year old daughter who lives in the high Arctic. I wanted to recreate one of my favourite fairy tales in a truly northern setting, turning story elements into ice bergs and filling the sky with northern lights and stars. The story of Red Riding Hood is written into the ice and Red Riding Hood’s cloak incorporates Gaelic – a special nod to my family heritage. I’ve spent a lot of time working with and mentoring young northern girls who face so many challenges in their daily lives resulting from the current realities of growing up in the North, and I wanted to create this piece to remind them of their strength, bravery and potential, and of their very real ability to write their own story as they see fit.
Looking Forward was created as part of my solo show Faces, where I explored the human face through as many different medium as I could – ultimately creating 100 different faces. She was one of the faces that really stuck with me from the show, displaying power and potential boiling beneath the surface and intensity just ready to spring. Of course my feelings about her may be coloured by the large amount of young adult post-apocalyptic literature I’ve been immersed in of late due to a third degree calf tear I suffered in dance rehearsal which is keeping me confined to the couch.
Take Another Step was originally designed to help raise funds for cancer research in connection to the Team in Training program for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. Having watched my mother successfully beat her battle with cancer, I wanted to honour the bravery that those struggling with the disease display each and every day. This piece took on special meaning when a friend’s cousin passed away from leukemia and my friend gave her mother this piece in her memory.