Art Toolkit Favourite ~ Molly Clark

What I listen to while I work is as important as any of my painting tools; it sets the tone for the work at hand. I remember how easily a set of landscape paintings came together while listening to Ian Tyson songs about the northern plains. Hearing author Stephen Jenkinson’s musings on heritage makes me think about a scene I’m painting and what it might have looked like generations ago. Creating art alongside an audiobook or podcast, learning while painting, killing two birds with one stone as they say, makes for productive days.

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Spotlight On ~ Paige Mortensen

It is all about the texture. It is the texture in an object or scene that entices me. Creating a piece of art gives me the opportunity to spend more time with it, really getting to know the details.
 
One beautiful afternoon in the fall, after a day of painting with our Artists Workshop group I walked downtown and the light shining under the Broadway bridge was one of those moments to be thankful for.
 
My watercolour batik process is ideal for creating the illusion of texture and I am always excited to find new ways of expressing what I see. I work with wax and watercolour on paper building up layers as I go. I can only work from light to dark so the wax is used to preserve the colour that currently exists and more paint is applied to make it darker.  This layering process culminates in the darkest colours being added. At that point I use layers of newspaper to iron the wax off the piece and I can finally see the finished piece.
 Paige Mortensen - Light Under Broadway
Light Under Broadway 20 x 10” Watercolour Batik ©Paige Mortensen
 Paige Mortensen - Changing
Changing 18 x 24” Watercolour Batik  ©Paige Mortensen
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Seasons change and so do we…..

We have gathered back together at Grace Westminster Auditorium to begin our 26th year. Last April, we celebrated our 25th anniversary at our annual show. Here are a couple of photos of the group taken then.

April 2015

This was taken with all of us, except Eva, who wasn’t able to be there, a few days before our show.

dress up for show 2015

Just before our show opening, all dressed up. After the show, we all headed off to our summer break.

On May 30, our dear Lou passed away. One of Saskatoon’s best known artists, Lou was one of the original group members and was happily part of our anniversary show. Even though over the years she had faced a number of health challenges, she faced them with her usual grace, gentleness and humour.

Lou in garden 2013

Lou sketching in the garden

Then, unexpectedly on August 27, our dear Valerie Borycki passed away after a very brief illness. We are still finding it hard that she won’t come bursting through the door, with stories to endlessly entertain us. Eleanore Romanow wrote a limerick that was read at Val’s memorial:

A Limerick for Val Borycki

There once was a lady named Val,
She was an extraordinary gal,
With dazzling red hair
And a wardrobe with flair,
She was a loving and generous pal.

Now our Val had an interesting life,
Not free from the occasional strife,
Believing ‘Come what may’
She enjoyed every day,
Colours bursting, from both brush and knife.

Some people just light up a room,
And wash away otherwise gloom,
We could count on our girl
With a swish and a swirl
To deliver her own va-va-voom.

Our beautiful spirit has fled,
And all cares of the world are shed.
She just slipped away,
On a late August day,
Not a good-bye word to be said.

We are here to honour our friend,
Who sparkled right to the end!
Although we have wept,
Your memory we’ve kept
With all of the love that we send.

So farewell dear Valerie – we will all miss you very much.
Your gal pals at Artists’ Workshop.

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We will miss both of these talented, generous bright spirits so much.

And we have had one more of our group decide to move to new ventures, after 25 years with the group. Karen Maguire is joining the Studio on 20th. We will miss Karen’s great style, humour and enthusiasm and wish her the best in her new studio.

We reflect back on our lovely friends, and now look forward to the year of art to come.

We welcome two new members at this time, Bobbi Clackson-Walker and Paige Mortensen. Bobbi is an exciting mixed media artist, and Paige is expanding our horizons with her unique watercolour batik work.

We have some new plans for the fall, and we will keep you posted with some news very shortly. This includes a new Facebook page, and a special November pre-Christmas sale at a gallery location in Saskatoon. Check back soon for details.

See you soon!

Thank you and on to the next event – Art Trek 2014!

Thank you to everyone who came out to our show on the first nice weekend of spring. We had a great turnout, good music, good food, and, even if we do say so ourselves, a very good show. Thanks to our musicians who provided us with such a good atmosphere. And thanks to everyone in the group who did their part to make the show such a great success.

Now, after a break, we will be getting ready for Art Trek 2014!

This year there will be 9 groups participating in Saskatoon’s one and only studio discovery tour. Art Trek takes place Friday, June 13 from 5 – 10 pm, and Saturday, June 14 from 10 am to 5 pm. We will be in our usual studio/show place, the auditorium at Grace Westminster.

To find out where all the locations are, and to see photos of various activities and arts, check out and like our Facebook page.

Show flurries

Beginning this weekend, various members of Artists’ Workshop are participating in art shows around Saskatoon and in Davidson. Here is the information:

Gail Prpick – Gail’s Art Show and Sale, one night only – This FRIDAY! Doors open at 5:30 pm, 112 Washington Ave, Davidson.

Little Gems Art Show and Sale – several members of the group participating, starting this Friday and continuing until Sunday afternoon. Small pieces of original art by local artists.

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Kathryn Green – On the Grid, with three other local artists. Frances Morrison Library Gallery, opening reception Thursday, Nov. 21, 7 pm.

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Valerie Borycki, Karen Maguire, Gail Prpick and Sylvia Thompson – Off the Wall Art Show and Sale, at the Mix Artist Collective, 539 24th Street East, Saskatoon. Opening night Friday Nov 29, 7 – 10 pm, Saturday Nov 30, 10 am – 5 pm, and Sunday Dec 1, 12 – 4 pm.

Persephone Theatre Pomegranate Gallery. Starting Nov 27, there will be small works for sale by members of the gallery, which includes several members of Artists’ Workshop,  during intermissions at the final show 2013. This is ‘The Black Bonspiel of Wullie MacCrimmon.’

Kathleen Slavin will have some of her works in ‘Deck the Walls’, the Rouge Gallery Christmas show to which all gallery artists contribute pieces.  Dec 10 to January 4th with an Opening Reception on Sat Dec 14th 2-5 p.m.

See you there!

Little Gems Show

The fourth annual Little Gems show will take place November 15 – 17 at the Mix Artist Collective Studio, 539 24th St East, Saskatoon (little white house behind Knox United Church). This show is free and open to the public.

The times of the show are:

Nov 15, 4 – 9 pm, opening reception

Nov 16 and 17 – noon to 4 pm

A number of the members of the Artists’ Workshop will be participating in this show. All pieces are small, ideal for gifts or indulgences. A donation to Station 20 West is made from the show.

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We hope to see you there!