This year the art events start early with the Gorge on Art festival on July 1. This is our first year taking part and while I imagined a lazy sunny day painting while the occasional folk wandered by (exaggeration), I am now hearing that this event has grown to more than 10,000 visitors and our weather is HOT. So… unless my dear Andrew Bartley intends to cover all the socializing, I’m going to have to put the brushes down and pay attention to the crowd while hydrating and sheltering.

As you can see from the studio shot above, preparations for all of this summer’s events involves stripping the place clear of all our new artwork. It looks so bright and white in there again! The worthy work has been framed, labelled, inventoried and boxed up, ready for new horizons. The not worthy has gone to the recycle bin. I do hope this year is as good or better for us in sales because… uh, well, doesn’t everyone need that extra cash?!

I’ve been letting this little dream enter into my psyche. The dream of taking a year off of showing to just paint. To build up that body of work I’ve been chasing. However, sales are now a big part of our cycle, allowing  us to stock up on supplies and do all that framing. Ah well, I have so much in life, this little dream will stay relegated to my brain to continue the dance of happy brain cells. Where would I be without a little dream taunting and teasing me into making more art?!

And speaking of making art… plein air painting has slipped into oblivion what with our little frame-it-ourself experiment. Which failed miserably. I can’t blame it all on that – getting ready to show in other ways has taken time and I’ve been suffering from allergies as bad as they were in Halifax. What we have to look forward to is painting at Friday’s Gorge event and then at the 29th Annual TD Art Gallery Paint-In on July 16. Then we have a month off of work and the world is ours. Hot dog!

Summer Art Call!

Once again, Victoria will be brimming with art this summer and my husband, Andrew Bartley and I are excited to be participating in 3 community art events and exhibitions. The first two are open-air events which are great for kids, with plenty of hands-on activities, music, food and of course, fabulous local art. We hope to see you there.

Gorge on Art

July 1 Canada Day from 9:30am – 4pm

Enjoy a true Canadian day of local music and art along the gorgeous Gorge Waterway.  This is the first time we are participating in this more humble version of the TD Art Gallery Paint-In. Well, I should say the first time for me because Andrew has participated as a musician in the past. This time we will have a canopy full of our new art – all of it, because this is the first event of the season. Swing by and take a gander!

More information:

29th Annual TD Art Gallery Paint-In

July 16 on Moss St (all of it!) from 11am – 4pm

If you’ve never been to the Moss St. Paint-in, you are missing out on an incredibly unique community event with over 150 local artists demonstrating, displaying and discussing their art throughout the day. Moss St. from the Art gallery to Dallas rd., closes down to traffic and the pavement fills up with thousands of happy art goers and their canine companions. Andrew and I will set up our plein air (open air) easels and try to paint in between chit-chatting with interested viewers and collectors. This year our booth is located just south of the Moss St. market and I do hope you will stop and say hello.

More information:

30th Annual Sooke Fine Arts Show

July 22 – August 1, 2016

A must see every year, this regional, juried exhibition showcases 375 works of original, west coast art by artists on Vancouver Island and the surrounding BC coastal islands. Andrew and I both have new work in the show this year and the gift shop is a wonderful place to find original art and cards at small sizes and prices. I think art should be accessible to all and this is the best place to see and buy it!

More information:







A Big Reason Why We Make Art

This is my second post for the day and it’s going to be a quick one. I just wanted to capture a moment which happened this past weekend.

Andrew and I moved into a complex which is a 35+ community but we are actually the youngest ones there (we’re in our early 50’s). Our closest neighbour is Phyl, who is a dear woman who has expressed interest in our art activities. We happened to be in the garage working on framing when she walked by and we got to talking about our recent art purchase in Seattle. We invited her up to see the piece and as she was walking down the hall to the living room, she let out this exclamation of excitement at the painting over the fireplace. I don’t remember her words but they were very complimentary. Andrew showed her the etching we’d bought and she examined it, wondering if the location could be researched, etc. She went on to say that she was hoping the painting she liked was what we’d bought. It was my long coastal landscape:


Then we directed Phyl to the stunning portrait Andrew has recently completed and she went into this amazing empathic description of the painful events which must have happened to the subject of the portrait, describing a miscarriage and such sadness. It was amazing to experience direct responses to our art. Usually the work is in a gallery and we wish we could be flies on the wall hearing what people are saying. This time we were just that. Phyl is a lovely woman and I can’t wait to invite her back to see more of our work!

Elsa, graphite and gold leaf on illustration board, 18″x24″ By Andrew Bartley