Thursday, December 31, 2015

watercolour tubes

Holbein watercolour tubes, bought yesterday, along with some older ones that belonged to my father.... on the fifth anniversary of his passing.

Sunday, December 13, 2015


Boxes of pencils, bought at a community flea market. Acquiring packets of them by the dozen gives these ubiquitous drawing instruments a whole new sense of respect. I am not sure whether the red-blue, dual colour pencils are common outside of Japan, but encountering them in an unlikely place was a bit of a treat. The regular lead pencils, apparently intended for Japanese "calligraphic" writing exercises has a nice thick lead, and at 5B, probably great for softly layering tones or drawing dynamically on larger sheets while retaining a good sense of control.

Saturday, December 5, 2015

winter shoes

I wanted to draw all the shoes at the school... but realized I forgot my faithful fountain pen (actually, I was not faithful to IT). I was therefore forced to draw with thick Sharpies, which were all I had in my bag... You can't dawdle and linger with your line; Sharpies really force you to make some quick decisions, and you can't focus on details. Otherwise, you end up with permanent marker spots 3 sheets deep. I felt a bit handcuffed and a little high from the smell... the results: a little clumsier than I would have liked, but the discomfort of a challenge is always a good thing.

Sunday, November 29, 2015


Watching students perform their class plays...

Friday, November 27, 2015

books at a school

Book carousels at an elementary school library...

Saturday, October 24, 2015

a long weekend in Banff: part 3

Some other mountains... Mount Bourgeau and Norquay. 

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

a long weekend in Banff: part 2

Three "urban" scenes in the town of Banff... Mount Rundle and Cascade always in view.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

a long weekend in Banff: part 1

Five views of Cascade Mountain over four days (mostly mornings), with the much smaller Stoney Squaw Mountain to the left... from the hotel room, from our extended Thanksgiving weekend in Banff.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015


It's been months since last drawing the sleeping kids... I missed doing this.

Monday, August 24, 2015

summer holiday epilogue...

These drawings by my 5 year-old son -- impressions of Vancouver Island, drawn using a twig and ink during one of my sketching sessions at Sunnyside Camp (I told him he could be my assistant) -- seem to convey a concise summary of our summer holiday experience... sky, ocean, mountains, trees... these are some impressive lines he has drawn, and once again I am inspired by the way children see and convey their experiences graphically.

a trip to BC: part 7

On the journey back home... waiting for the ferry in Nanaimo, and on the windy ferry deck with other passengers looking towards the Vancouver skyline.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

a trip to BC: part 6

 Some panorama views, including two at Long Beach using some whittled twigs (surprisingly usable...)

Long Beach, Pacific Rim National Park Reserve, BC

Long Beach, Pacific Rim National Park Reserve, BC

from Ucluelet, BC

from Tofino, BC

Okanagan Lake, from Kelowna, BC

Sunnyside Camp 2015: part 5

Gatherings held in the barn-like, unadorned, rough-hewn wooden structure at Sunnyside Camp...

Friday, August 21, 2015

a trip to BC: part 5

Sketches from in and around Ucluelet, BC...

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Sunnyside Camp 2015: part 4

A sketch of the crowd gathered by the shore of Sylvan Lake to witness ten baptisms. As always with baptisms, it was such an awesome experience witnessing these young men and women put their faith in action and show their committment (and openness to vulnerability) to Christ and His people.

"We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life." Romans 6:4 (NIV)

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

a trip to BC: part 4

Three views of mountains, seen from Ucluelet, BC. They were drawn with the set of Tri-Tone pencils bought on a short pit stop in Kamloops... a surprising find as I had been unable to find these anywhere. Unlike other multi-coloured pencils, the coordinated range of colours within each pencil allows for a bit more control.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Sunnyside Camp 2015: part 3

Some photos from our afternoon sketching sessions at Sunnyside Camp, and some of my own doodles... from Day 1, which focused on line, and Day 2, which provided an opportunity to work with washes. I always enjoy guiding people through these sessions; it is such a privilege to share my own experiences with others!

Monday, August 17, 2015

a trip to BC: part 3

Seven views across the harbour from downtown Nanaimo (all the same view), while the rest of my family takes a nap in the hotel room.

Before embarking on this trip, I forgot to pack my bag of sketching supplies (including my beloved fountain pen), and I had to make do with some items I bought on a brief lunch stop in Kamloops. This forced me to work (a tiny bit) outside of my comfort zone throughout the holidays...

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Sunnyside Camp 2015: part 2

Some notes/sketches from the ten sessions throughout the week at our yearly Bible camp. This year's speaker, a guest from Ontario (and coincidentally, a family acquaintance from close to 25 years ago), spoke on the beatitudes, taking us through a contemplative, encouraging, and revealing journey through each of the verses session by session, framing the familiar words around the notion that the beatitudes act as our guide towards becoming transformed into the likeness of Christ.