Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Making Contact

 One of the reasons I have tried to make myself brave enough to draw and paint in public is that I think it is a great way to make contact with people. I always feel self conscious and like a bit of a fraud as I am sketching and painting, but people who come up to me are inevitably curious and generous with kind comments. And in return, I get to have some interesting conversations with all sorts of people.

I often find myself in New Westminster with time on my hands while I'm waiting for my car to be serviced. The Quay down buy the Fraser River is always a good source of inspiration and places to sit for a while. This day, I was working away on a tug boat when a little boy and his mom approached. He seemed really curious so I encouraged him to have a go at painting. I only asked that he paint on the left side of the page so I could do the painting of the tug. He made beautiful bold strokes and enjoyed mixing the paint, as is obvious. And he just could not resist adding a bit of blue to the bow of my tug, just above the textured tire bumper. I have to say, Oskar improved my boat. He even agreed, with the help of his mom, to co-sign the painting.

As I drove home, I spotted a Korean restaurant and spontaneously decided to treat myself to lunch. As I waited for my cold noodle soup and kimchi, I pulled out my pen and paints and did a quick sketch of the traffic lights. The waitress, who spoke very little English, was very interested and turned out to be a painter herself. She was too shy to show me any of her work, but carefully noted the type of Moleskine notebook  and reservoir paint brush I was using, with the thought that she may give them a try herself. My lunch arrived before I got too far along with the painting but, in the end, I decided I liked how the traffic lights hung in the middle of the white page.


  1. What an enchanting story - and the picture is lovely. Looks like big waves crashing against the pier as the tug pulls in.

  2. Oh ya! I hadn't seen it that way but you are right. I like it!

  3. you and Oskar made a darn fine team! I think that is a great spread. and, I do like this street lights hanging on top of the blank page.....makes for a really interesting and quirky look.