Sunday, September 30, 2012

More culture days

 Last night we went to fire dancing at a park on 14th at Winnipeg. Weather, as I said yesterday, was perfect. Even after dark, it was still comfortable.
 This morning we went to the pancake breakfast at Connaught School. Talked with Aaron Clark and Gavin DeLint.
 At the Balkwill Centre, William and I participated in a couple of workshops. We collaborated on an embossed copper plate which William wants as his coat of arms.
Bernie Hi ran a drawing on film workshop. We both made films. I built a needle tool with materials I brought with me. The results will eventually go up on either the FIlmpool site or the City of Regina cite. 

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Culture days at Connaught School 100th Anniversary

We spent the afternoon at Connaught school. Highlights were Janine Windolph's video shoot for the school web videos, Kevin MacKenzie's story session (a great, extended version of "The Ghost with the One Black Eye"  story) and Robert Truszkowski's silkscreen workshop where William printed onto the shirt off his back. William can't wait to wear the shirt. Margaret wants to iron it to help set the paints as they are water based and likely to fade significantly. After supper, William told the entire ghost story to Margaret (who was working on a cultural project at the Dunlop all day) and hit almost every point including voices, numbers of steps, and sound effects, that Kevin performed. 

Friday, September 28, 2012

Intensive Friday

  In class today, I ran my students through the entire hand processing procedure  The weather was perfect for them to dry the film outside, slight breeze and 27 degrees. A far cry from the snow we had two years ago. I had to run from class to an NMSL meeting where the big news is that the admin job for the lab will finally be re-posted soon (we were all worried that the position would be lost). From that meeting I had to attend the orientation meet-and-greet with our students. Then back to the darkroom to process one last roll and then clean it all up.
 As soon as I got home I left again for the first day of the Connaught school 100th anniversary celebration. Margaret and William were volunteering to help with the bbq. Later in the evening we returned to watch the videos Janine Windolph helped make with the students. William's friend Alice had a magical moment in it when she talks about the school in the future being invisible (this video is the second one down on THIS PAGE, the part with Alice is just past the six minute mark). We unwound when we got home with the premiere episode of "Elementary". Some good parts to it. Not the best Sherlock Holmes of the past five  years, but I think worth a watch. 

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Grad students at Artful Dodger

William, Paul, and I went to the gallery beside the Artful Dodger. The grad students, including Sylvia Ziemann and Geremy Lague had work on display. Not sure who put in the money machine, but William loved it. You could reach in and get fake money that was blowing around. Margaret hosted the poetry jam at the Mercury. We couldn't hear the phone over "Real Steel" which was playing very loudly so she was forced to walk home. Feeling guilty. Should have brought her some of that money.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012


Mixed chemistry for Friday's class. Mixed ingredients and baked biscotti this evening. 

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

pin hole is too big

Again with missing equipment, I misplaced the camera body cap that I'd modified to be a pin hole for a Canon DSLR camera so had to buy a new one this week. The pin hole itself is made with thin copper cover but Rob and I made it last minute and the hole is much too big. As a result, the image is very soft. 

Monday, September 24, 2012

cut out animation

Did some demo cut out animation in class today. The small portable copy stand went missing sometime this week so I had to do some last minute substitutions with a tripod on the table. It made it impossible to get rid of the reflections on the glossy photos. Didn't matter much; just testing. The software dongle wasn't in so the clip here has the watermark on it. 

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Donna-Lynne McGregor

This morning Donna-Lynne McGregor passed away in hospital. Her husband, Chris Cunningham, is a terrific guy, a writer and actor. My sympathies go out to him. I was on Donna-Lynne's thesis committee for her MFA five years ago. She was a screenwriter and researcher, having worked closely with Dr. Sheila Petty for many years. My most recent contact with her has been through my good friend Leslea who was a close friend of Donna-Lynne's since film school in the 80s. Donna-Lynne had a wonderful charming laugh which was always authentic and showed everyone the young girl in her heart. . 
Donna-Lynne (D.L.) McGregor in 2008

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Sherlock Holmes

Pretty good Saturday, did almost nothing but hang around the house, watch some tv, surf the web, and so on. William and I have been watching Sherlock over the past couple of weeks (all six of the BBC episodes) and today we watched the Jeremy Brett Sherlock Holmes "Scandal in Bohemia" episode followed by the first of the Robert Downey Jr. movies. 

Friday, September 21, 2012


William wiggled a tooth out in school today. Smeared blood everywhere apparently. When I got home, I opened my oxblood Doc Martens. They are a different boot from my last ones and fit a bit tight across the top but length and width are perfect so I'm confident they will soften up.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Visiting William's school

This evening William's school had an open house for parents to come visit. His new teacher seems very nice. The principal is also new and he has lots of energy and wants to bring fun events to the school (reinstated the egg toss this fall for example). 

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Meaning of Life

I watched Monty Python's "The Meaning of Life" with William this evening. I'm certain there will be consequences. Had to pause to explain condoms which, although the sex ed class they had last spring seemed highly comprehensive, it was not. I think the critique of Catholics is what will really resonate with him though. 

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Long exposure photos

Did some demo photos with Rob in studio today using long exposures. Got talking about artist statement for a bit too long and made William five minutes late for his lunch time dentist appointment (no cavities). Watched "Sleepy Hollow" after supper; it's much more adventure than horror and William liked it. I'm hoping to dive into more Tim Burton over the next few weeks. 

Monday, September 17, 2012

Funny walk

Talked about pixilation and walking sequences today in animation. I did a small performance. We didn't light the green screen or even shoot directly towards it, so I make no apologies for this rather substandard mess. 

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Zombie walk

Margaret and William did their first zombie walk today. I went along without costume to take pictures (didn't want the cameras all covered with blood). Had a great time. Rain threatened a couple times but never struck. 

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Allan's legislature game

 Had a fun session playing Allan Dotson's new game at the legislature. We thought up a number of scenarios that his comic book legislature-robot could engage in, but unfortunately most would not fly due to the context of him working as the legislature artist-in=residence, not satirist-in-exile.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Frank Bessai visit

Margaret's cousin Frank Bessai, his wife, and his two friends/colleagues from Nicaragua came to town today. They'll perform at the "Playing for Change" tomorrow at the Artful Dodger. We had some other friends and family over as well and the fifteen of us hung around the fire pit. Frank played a bit of guitar. 

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Quantity and Quality

This afternoon I talked to Christina's Film 100 class about the BFA program. It's a much bigger class than I'm accustomed to being in front of, but I think it went well. This evening I found a collection of old bionicles for William over Used Regina. He paid for them himself, a collection of about a dozen fairly old guys, none of which he had before, all for $10. He's very pleased. 

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

puppet show

On the weekend, I helped William put titles on three single-shot puppet show videos he shot with his friends a few weeks ago. I can't believe how loud and obnoxious they are and how much William loves watching them over and over again. (click on photo to reach the shortest of the three videos)

Tuesday, September 11, 2012


Margaret made four pies today. Saskatoon, raspberry, apple, and lemon. We cut into the lemon. The others are stored away. Fall is great! I just love having excessive amounts of fruit that "desperation" forces us to use up in the most imaginative ways. 

Monday, September 10, 2012

The buck stops where?

Met with Risa after lunch today to discuss photography. On her wall was a money printing project Geremy did last year with Erik's face, very .... unsettling (made my hand shake, sorry about soft focus). 

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Take out food with Leslie and Leif

Invited over to Leslie and Leif's to order in some Chinese food. The kids had fun in the yard, feels like the last day of summer.  

Saturday, September 8, 2012

strange garage sales

William and I kicked around most of the day at home, but mid-afternoon Margaret got off work and we hit a few of the garage sales so desperate that they are sill open late on a Saturday. One estate sale, at which William bought an exercise bike for a toonie, had unbelievable numbers of pens. 

Friday, September 7, 2012

No rest Friday

First day of teaching today. I couldn't stop talking for nearly the full three hours, I'm sure I was insufferable. We had an orientation meeting with new grad students afterwards. I left afterwards, thinking I could get some rest, but when I got home I found William depressed because he'd not had a video finished in two months. I sat down with him and we completed a bionicle video. This evening we went to the Dunlop exhibition of paintings and animation by Jennifer Wanner about fictitious cross bred plants. The opening had Eric Hill doing music (William was unenthusiastic about the tunes, but sure loved the refurbished elevator) and then to the Creative City Centre for a second art exhibition by Linda Moskalyk, amazing painting/collages of rain forest trees. 

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Paul and poetry

It was Paul's birthday the other day. Made a lime cheesecake for him this evening, along with bbq salmon. Played Wii the rest of the night, quite relaxing.
I just noticed that I got two poetry videos screened as part of Florean Museum Carbunari International Experimental Film Festival. 

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Sylvia Ziemann show at Mysteria

Classes started today. I don't teach Wednesdays but we had a lengthy faculty meeting. I'm glad they decided (at the 2.5 hour mark) not to include the open discussion forum. It's not that I think such discussions are a bad idea, but when meetings go too long, then I find my creative thinking is discouraged due to my frustration and exhaustion.
This evening Sylvia Ziemann opened her new exhibition at Mysteria gallery on 13th Avenue. Great work. Previous shows I've been to of hers have been primarily her miniature buildings, eerily constructed from toys and junk. This show had only two such buildings but quite a few drawings and paintings. These show a great deal of depth as she explores every more impossible constructions. 

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Monday, September 3, 2012

Legislature game design

Allan Dotson is one of seven current artist in residents at the Saskatchewan Legislature. His project is to work with community to create a game around the legislature building. His games are always fun and interesting to look at. William and I biked down there today to draw some game pieces. He's there most days this week for anyone to drop in and draw and collaborate with him. Next week I think people will get to play the game. 

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Looking at photos

Margaret and William took lots of great photos in Edmonton. Seems that they had a really great time, catching up with Griffin as well as introducing the Bjorki family to her cousin Frank. 

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Margaret and William Return

 Margaret and William returned from Edmonton today. I ate nothing but leftovers while they were gone, partially from their abundance but partially from a lack of motivation to do anything. I really didn't have much will while they were gone.
We went to Richard Gustin's bash to celebrate his 65th birthday, held over at the seniors centre. Good time, lots of wine and good folks.