Thursday, November 30, 2023

Carillon cover

William got an email the other day from the Carillon editors inviting him to do the cover to the Christmas issue. He's started penciling it today. It naturally focused on our favorite character, the Christmas Bully. 

Wednesday, November 29, 2023

New cappuccino machine

Took advantage of a black Friday sale (or more accurately it took advantage of me) to replace my cappuccino machine. Old one was great but the pump has given out and I can't get it working properly any more. Having a fresh cup with good foam is such a pleasure. 

Art in attic

William is documenting all the art in the house as a project for school. The last things were in a pair of boxes in the attic. They contain a variety of our own work, of posters and memorabilia, and a sizable number of drawings, paintings, prints, and letters given or traded to us by other artists. I think he added 75 items to his list from these boxes. 


Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Dad in wheel chair

 Dad's been in a wheel chair for the past couple of weeks. He's gotten more frail and falls a lot, but I'm worried that without walking, he'll get even weaker. Mom says she isn't strong enough to help him walk so I tried to get him up be he stubbornly refused. I think when he stops being stubborn, that is when we've lost him. 

Monday, November 27, 2023

Saturday, November 25, 2023

Jess Richter exhibition

 We attended (but didn't take good pictures of) Jess Richter's pop up exhibition of weirdness, magic, rituals, and photographs in a space on Albert Street. 

Friday, November 24, 2023


 I was with my grad students. Ayesha was showing off her maquette which she is filming, and Erika asked about using reflected glass inside it. I realized that they were talking about Pepper's Ghosts and I got quite excited. Perhaps too excited, but who can blame me? Anyway, after getting up and down a couple of times, dashing between the model and the computer, I was literally on the edge of my seat when the seat rolled back and flipped, causing me to nose dive into the table. There was blood gushing. Erika and Ayesha helped me find the university nurse. By then, the bleeding had stopped, but I did continue to pontificate in the waiting room and we returned to the classroom afterwards. Other than the blood, a good day. 

Thursday, November 23, 2023


 Lori brought me a few cameras from Al's family. They are in amazingly good condition. Work is piling up and I'm feeling a bit unmotivated, so painting has slowed down. To add to this, my turntable has been malfunctioning - I think it is the belt (speed fluctuates constantly). 

Wednesday, November 22, 2023

Andy Grzesina funeral

Margaret, William, and I attended Andy Grzesina's funeral. We sat with Kevin near the back and didn't participate in the religious part of the service. It was the most religious funeral I've been at in a very long time. There was very little personal until after the service when Andrea did a very good speech in the hall during the luncheon. 

Tuesday, November 21, 2023

Spider at Gerri Ann's

 Met with Gerri Ann about animation today. As I was leaving, I found this frozen beauty on her window sill. 

Monday, November 20, 2023

No power, no problem

Power went out for a half hour, perhaps more. William got inspired to work so got flashlights and did a print demo of the wallpaper he wants to use in his graduating exhibition. 


 I always cover rotoscoping in animation but every time I do a class demo, it is boring because one person is working at any one time, while the others basically watch (but they don't). Struck upon a new idea that feels a bit like grade school -- I gave each of them a "work sheet" which contained a Muybridge photo sequence. I also gave them a blank sheet of paper and a marker. Each of them, at the same time, created a one second rotoscope from Muybridge. Everyone was busy, and everyone has skin in the game. We ran out of time so I have to create the animations later. 

Saturday, November 18, 2023

Woody Allen films

 William and I watched Sweet and Lowdown tonight and got talking about Woody Allen. His films are becoming difficult to find. There are over 50 and are distributed chaotically. 

Friday, November 17, 2023

Grad students talk

 Attended "Art For Lunch" today with presentations by five grad students including Jhazley (whom I co-supervise) and Mahtab and Jossie who were in my course last winter. Brought my class and spend the rest of class talking about the process of presenting a talk. 

Thursday, November 16, 2023

Baking begins

Started my seasonal baking a bit early with two batches of cookies. I need to bring something sweet to a meeting this Saturday so thought I'd might as well make something myself. 

Wednesday, November 15, 2023

Last painting class


Painting class at the Balkwill ends today. The winter term might be in the afternoon which isn't possible for me, so this may be my last class until spring. Carolyn brought be four cameras. 

Tuesday, November 14, 2023

Breakfast with Katherine and Adele

Before they got on their plane back to Vancouver, we had some breakfast and pie at the Mercury with Katherine and Adele, as well as George. I gifted Adele with three old Tolkien calendars (1977, 1978, and 1984). I am loving it when I can find deserving and appreciative homes for stuff that I've obsessively clung to for  that many decades. 

Monday, November 13, 2023

Is it spring

 All the snow that has come so early is now disappearing. My body is convinced that spring is here and that classes will be over soon. The cat is neither with me nor against me. 

Sunday, November 12, 2023

Bird People photo shoot


William started his photo portrait photo shoot today with Emma followed by Mike Grzesina. It is one of those "going above and beyond" projects with costumes, backdrops, props, and multiple subjects all to satisfy a 2 image assignment. At the same time, the masked figures may be seen as non-portraits and therefore a failure of an assignment. Time will tell. More shooting to come. 

Saturday, November 11, 2023

Katherine and Adele

 We had a really great day hosting Katherine and Adele today. Margaret arranged for us to get a guided tour of the textile show at the MacKenzie. Then everyone went to the Dunlop and a bit of a drive as I scrambled to get the house cleaned up and supper prepared. They suggested a game of Munchkin after supper so we played that until they were exhausted (the most even and competitive game of Munchkin I've ever played). Fun. Hope they can visit again. 

Friday, November 10, 2023

Andy Grzesina

Mike and Paul's dad, Andy Grzesina, passed away today after spending the last week or two in the hospital. Andy was always friendly and selfless. On a number of occasions when we went to their house to connect up with Mike, Andy would take on the role of host and bring wine and snacks and engage us in friendly banter. We always felt welcomed. When George got married and we were arranging the farm reception, Andy stepped up and did the carving of the pit-roast. He just wanted to be useful and involved. He didn't sit on the sidelines. Some time after that, I asked him to borrow his ladder which could stand on stairs so that I could move a light fixture to the top of the stairs. Andy not only brought over the ladder, he insisted on helping install the light (actually, it was just me assisting him). He was one of a kind and will be missed. 

Thursday, November 9, 2023


Margaret bought tickets for a jazz concert at the Artesian this evening. We arrived shortly before it started, having just come from the Slate opening with David Thauberger and so when we got there we discovered there were no more bench seats and the whole floor space was open for people to stand and dance. We managed to get some wall. There was no coat check, we had winter boots on, and the brass instruments were all miked and heavily amplified 10 feet away from us. During the break, William and I retreated to the bar in the basement (which was not crowded, a situation that suggested the people were afraid to leave their valued seats unattended). While sitting there, I met Ryan for the first time. We've been playing an online game with Allan for the past two years but have never met. That was nice. 


Wednesday, November 8, 2023

Angie Counios book signing

 Angie published a new (solo) book and boxes of them arrived for her to host a book signing on her birthday today at the Freehouse. The place was crowded so we didn't stay long but did briefly catch up with another of William's high school teachers, Ms. Moser. 

Tuesday, November 7, 2023

Snow day .... again

 Forecast has been for warm weather in the near future, but that was just to make us drop our guard. Came down today like no ones business.  Sticky and good for snowmen. Margaret built one on our front step. This would be a perfect day to stay home, which I often can on Tuesdays, but this week we needed to swap cars at the garage for winter tires, which meant that William was without his car so I needed to take him to the University, and I needed to take Margaret to work. I had two other commitments that were postponed due to the snow. Good grief. 

Monday, November 6, 2023

Art on the table

William worked on the playing board of his art project while I painted my Canonet again. The Canonet was the first camera I painted back in May of 2018. 


Sunday, November 5, 2023

Feathers for the bird... people

 Did a bit of shopping for William to day, picked him up some feathers to enhance the disguising of people as his mask-wearing bird people that he draws. The masks don't have feathers on them, the masks cover the feathered faces beneath. 

Saturday, November 4, 2023

Rowan Knopf


William with Rowan Knopf, July 2020
This is the most recent picture I have of William's childhood friend Rowan Knopf. This is not how he would usually dress, but he did on this one day in July of 2020 when he dropped by the house in the early months of covid. In recent years, William and Rowan haven't been close, only connecting now and then and rarely for long, but back when they were young they talked and played (but mostly talked) for hours. It seemed like they would never stop. Lego was central to the conversation, but never really Lego. This was just a trigger that would launch them into the most bizarre tales, creating a set of characters and situations that could span a series of books or tv seasons. Rarely did anything hit paper or video, it was all words in the air. 

Ed came to our house this evening to tell us that Rowan was killed in a auto accident yesterday. 

Friday, November 3, 2023

Textiles at the MacKenzie

 The big textile show the Tim co-curated has finally opened at the MacKenzie. This is the final location for this four gallery tour, and the only gallery large enough to fully display this 24 panel piece, "Sun Ascending" by Kaija Sanelma Harris. 

Thursday, November 2, 2023

More photos, more galleries

The photos William shot on the foggy day on the road to Southey were overdeveloped and likely will be very hard to print. Today I took him to my favorite railway crossing to shoot a new roll. Also got close to a field of migrating geese. Later we attended a small opening of art from the Flatland collective where Matt Ripplinger was exhibiting some of his prints. 


Wednesday, November 1, 2023

Local films at RPL

This evening we went to a screening of new works by Esperanza Sanchez. She has been doing some painting on film with some support from the Filmpool Shortly after that screening. Elian screened a short film before they played The Sound Of Music. Elian has a gallery opening this weekend.