Friday Night January 11, 2019 – Joyce Fournier

(Submitted by Ingrid Mueller)

Joyce Fournier is an internationally collected Painter and Sculptor who lives and works in Toronto, Canada.  Her new and latest body of work is inspired by a long time fascination with Abstract Expressionism (particularly the works of Franz Kline) and the freedom she experiences when painting from within.  The paintings are gestural in nature, emoting a spontaneity and freedom.   

As a former student of the Academy of Realist Art, Joyce started her fine art career painting landscapes and portraiture in oil, charcoal and graphite.  However, she explained that she became bored with the process and mediums and started to experiment with abstract expressionism.

On this evening, Joyce demonstrated her process, which is basically spontaneous application of acrylic paint and medium on a canvas.

She stressed that the most important bit of advice she can give is to not overthink anything. Do not plan.  Spontaneity is key!

Starting with a fresh canvas, she applies heavy gesso with a trowel, being sure to create plenty of texture. Once dry, the fun begins.

Joyce admitted that most galleries do not care for the colour gold in paintings, however, she usually includes gold, particularly as part of her under painting process. She also likes to use white, black and often, red. 

Her choice of brushes are not specific although she recommends using larger brushes, particularly when using a large canvas and painting trowels/knives for making lines and marks. Drips are a favourite in contrasting, bold colour as are lines using various instruments like paint pushers and silicone colour scrapers and trowels.

Joyce has made a drastic leap in art genres and it appears she is enjoying herself completely.

To view more of her work and read her impressive CV, visit

Friday Night December 7, 2018 – Dalia Elcharbini

(Submitted by Brent Arlitt)

On December 7, members were treated to an entertaining presentation on
the use of graphite powder and gilding by Dalia Elcharbini.
Dalia, who works in graphic arts, shared her results of creating
dramatic art pieces using graphite powder and gold leaf. (the REAL
thing!) She showed two of her completed pictures, about 30” x 40”,
and demonstrated on a third. All pictures are done on a heavy
illustration paper and featured a face that was drawn with graphite
powder and then highlighted with solid gold leaf.
Dalia who is influenced by Salvador Dali includes symbolism in her
drawings. She does not “duplicate life” and her faces come from
imagination and experience.

To find out more about Dalia you can visit:



Friday Night November 16, 2018 – Andrew Cheddie Sookrah

(Submitted by Ingrid Mueller)

Abstracting the Figure in Landscape

Andrew Sookrah is an experienced illustrator and designer, having spent the first part of his career in the advertising business. But his passion for fine art and painting and ability as an experienced instructor shone through on this Friday evening.

“Sookrah is a raw colourist whose free brushwork is confident and powerful. His strengths can be seen in his strong sense of design, exquisite use of effective composition, confident presentation of bold colours… and in his figurative and portraiture work, his capturing the essence of the human spirit.” Ref.

Andrew maintains that all painting is abstraction in varying degrees.  He suggests that when one paints, no matter the subject, it is an abstraction of a form, shape and colour.

Andrew spent most of the evening demonstrating Abstracting the Figure in Landscape, where he started with an interesting reference photo and using a canvas which had been prepared with a loose sketch of a figure in a boat, and using paints based on value rather than colour, produced a remarkable semi-abstract painting.

A video of the full demonstration can be viewed on the DVAC Facebook page in the VIDEO section.

You may find out more about Andrew Cheddie Sookrah, his work and workshops at




Friday Night Nov. 23, 2018 – Nami Ueno

(Submitted by Brent Arlitt)

Nami Ueno presented an absolutely delightful demonstration of her unique artwork on Friday November 23. Her several artworks showed the precise yet very creative dreamy quality of her art pieces – that vary from spiritual to whimsical and many combinations in between that illustrate the depth of feeling Nami puts into her artistry, that is rich in form and colour. She states that ” Colours and Shapes are my inspiration”. This she combines with her varied experiences and extensive art education in Japan since she was 15 years old, which included her graduation from Kyoto University in Art and Design. Many of the art works shown included a rich depth of story line. Many included Iede, a small black bird who leaves home to explore the world, and to find his true self. A story line is often included in a series of paintings she produces. The depth of story included in many of the paintings prompted several DVAC members to encourage Nami to write the beautiful stories that are backgrounds to her work.

Nami’s demonstration started with a typical varied blue background (She sometimes uses up to 5 different blue colours in one painting) with a subtly varied texture. She often spends a long time at this stage where she lets the canvas stimulate her imagination and tells her what shapes and colours should be included, as she proceeds. She then used a variety of techniques to add the background and to pick out the shapes that will be in the final painting. She often uses glazes, such as Prussian blue, to allow some of the shapes to recede. The attached photos show the variety and depth of her works.

Nami also provided 2 handouts to attendees that explained a bit of her creative methods and the importance of practicing self compassion to allow ideas to proceed from the depth of your being as an artist.

Anyone who wants to be thoroughly enchanted should look on her website:

Instagram: @uenonami (spiritual Art)

@nami_dreamartist (Dreamy Art)

Nami_art_techniques (Flowers and drawings)


Friday Night Club November 9 – Plein Air Show and Tell

(Submitted by Ingrid Mueller)

It was really lovely to spend the evening with the enthusiastic DVAC Plein Air group hosted by committee chair Wally Lush.

The Don Valley Art Club is a dynamic club with activities for just about every art interest, however Plein Air seems to be making a renaissance and this group heads out to pre-arranged locations more than a dozen times per year, weather permitting.

The evening commenced with introductions and explanation of how the group works by Wally and then a number of members showing some of their finished plein air paintings. They discussed their work and what was involved in the process. It seems that many paintings are not finished on the spot and often photos are taken of the scene in order to capture the current light and finished in the studio.

It became apparent that weather is a very important factor in combining art and the outdoors. Capturing the light is probably most important explained Georgia Bowen. Selecting just the right subject would be another important issue as one can become distracted by your surroundings. A remedy for this is the use of a view finder which helps one focus on a specific subject.

Georgia Bowen and Brent Arlitt demonstrated the types of easels they use and the pros and cons of each.  However, it would appear there are many options from which to choose as well as price points.

The idea of plein air is attractive to many landscape artists but they hesitate because they don’t know where to start. The following is a basic list of some standard plein air equipment: collapsible easel, lightweight paint box and tripod, folding stool, small clamp-on umbrella, paints, brushes, palette knife, solvent, water and painting medium (dependent on medium used), wet-panel carrier, paper towel or rags, canvas/panels/paper.

The following is a link to a blog by Charley Parker about plein air equipment:

While plein air seems cumbersome to studio painters, this type of painting reconnects a person with the spirit and energy of nature and with the opportunity to become completely engaged with natural landscape, not to mention the opportunity to simply enjoy the outdoors. For those who are hesitant, perhaps a good way to start is to simply take a sketch book and pencils and go from there. If the experience is rewarding, purchasing more equipment will ensue.

The following is a link to a blog written by Timothy M. Joe that may help getting started: