(Submitted by Ingrid Mueller)

Record attendance of approx. 65 people for the September 28th Friday Night Club, all to see the much-anticipated presentation by world-renowned, award-winning watercolourist David McEown and he did not disappoint.

David attended OCAD and has focused his artistic efforts painting in watercolour for the past 25 years. His paintings are represented in collections worldwide and he is an elected member of the Canadian Society of Painters in Watercolour which, in 2005 and this year, 2018, awarded him the prestigious A.J. Casson Medal. David now spends most of his time in B.C. but also has a home in Richmond Hill where he grew up. As his time is stretched between traveling, painting, workshops and shows we were very lucky to squeeze a few hours out of his very busy schedule.

After a brief introduction, David launched the evening narrating his very entertaining digital show Water and Light: an Artist’s Journey from The North Pole to Antarctica. The show merges painting, video and photography inspired from his travels in the Great Bear Rainforest, Africa, Antarctica and the North Pole. The audience was entirely enthralled by his humorous anecdotes about encounters with a variety of creatures (depending upon his location) that include polar bears, emperor penguins and lions. “The entire presentation was woven together with reflections about the environment and the inner creative process of painting with watercolour.” His enthusiasm for the medium and his passion for the environment made his demonstration about painting an aurora borealis very special, and he did it all within 20 minutes.

Some of the materials used were a 1” wolf hair Chinese brush, a 4” paint brush, 140lb. cold press watercolour paper. The easel he used is unique for plein air and allows for flexibility and stability, although he uses something a little sturdier depending upon where he is. Plein air in the Arctic and Antarctic is much more extreme than Centre Island. David likes to paint wet on wet, so he coated his paper a few times with water and adjusted the clips to allow for stretching. He suggested that particularly for skies, he likes to start with a light wash of violet. David uses a paint scraper available at any hardware store that allows him to achieve hard lines and definition.

When not painting penguins in the Antarctic or filming grizzlies in Alaska, David can be found in Pacific Spirit Park close to his home in Vancouver.
You can see the vast array of his work and learn about his journeys at his website www.davidmceown.com


David painting on location



(Submitted by Ingrid Mueller)

Loree Ovens has an extensive background in printmaking in a variety of formats: etching, lino block, collagraphy and silkscreen that is influenced by textile design, having received an arts diploma from Sheridan in fabrics. She subsequently attained her BFA from OCADU in printmaking. She specializes in intaglio techniques, especially that of copper etching, aquatint, drypoint and collagraphy.

Collagraphy is a printmaking process in which materials are applied to a rigid substrate. The plate can be intaglio-inked, inked with a roller or paintbrush or some combination thereof. Ink or pigment is applied to the resulting collage and the board is used to print onto paper or another material using either a printing press or various hand tools. The resulting print is termed a collagraph. Substances such as carborundum, acrylic texture mediums, sandpapers, textiles, bubble wrap, string or other fibres, cut card, leaves and grass can all be used in creating the collagraphy plate. In some instances, leaves can be used as a source of pigment by rubbing them onto the surface of the plate. Different tonal effects and vibrant colours can be achieved with the technique due to the depth of relief and differential inking that results from the collagraphy plate’s highly textured surface.

Collagraphy is a very open printmaking method. The ink may be applied to the upper surfaces of the plate with a brayer for a relief print, or ink may be applied to the entire board and then removed from the upper surfaces but remain in the spaces between objects, resulting in an intaglio print. A combination of both intaglio and relief methods may also be employed. A printing press may or may not be used. (Wikipedia)

Loree used an aluminium plate dry point scratched a pattern into the plate. She subsequently printed then applied different colours, using an oil-based ink (oil doesn’t dry too quickly), to the same plate, producing an attractive, simple print that was remarkably lovely.

As DVAC has a very active and talented printmaking group, the demonstration Loree gave was popular, but it resonated especially with those not currently practising. The Monday Print Making Group may increase in attendance as a result of this demo.

Loree’s work can be viewed on her website at www.loree.ovens.com
Loree is represented by David Kaye Gallery at www.davidkayegallery.com
She also conducts workshops at Open Studio www.openstudio.ca,
Articulations drypoint AGO www.ago.ca and The Japanese Paper Place www.japanesepaperplace.com




(Submitted by Wally Lush)

About 8 artists met at Riverdale Farm on Saturday morning, braving a slight chill but enjoying the beautiful light. A perfect morning of
sketching and painting, then fighting off hoards of wasps as we enjoyed lunch surrounded by mounds of late summer flowers.



(Submitted by Wally Lush)

After a scary/rainy Monday, our plein air group had a great day to paint at Corktown Common, close to the Distillery District. Five artists painted with pastels, watercolour and oils and sketched happily on a sunny end-of-summer day.



(Submitted by Karin Fediw/Wally Lush)

There were lots of people at High Park, but the DVAC plein air painters were able to find each other and enjoy a hearty breakfast or treats at the café before heading out. There was a lot to choose from, including ponds, majestic trees and amazing floral displays.



(Submitted by Wally Lush)

On August 7, 2018, 5 of our artists met at Parkwood Estate in Oshawa to paint on the grounds of this lovely home. The skies were initially threatening, but soon the heat and humidity took over as the sun came out. There were sketchers, watercolorists and oil painters and several
great studies were completed.



(Submitted by Lynn Pashleigh/Wally Lush)

A group of intrepid DVAC artists met at Bluffer’s Park to enjoy the sun, the warmth the Bluffs and the company. It was a productive day, with no sunburn and few annoying bugs.

(Submitted by Karin Fediw/Wally Lush)

There was a great turnout for the plein air event in south Etobicoke. Ten painters were present, as well as three non-painters who were there for moral support. It was nice to see some new members. The weather was warm and sunny, and a few of us had lunch together in the pagoda at the top of the hill. There were watercolourists, sketchers, oil and acrylic painters. A little bit of everything!





(submitted by Wally Lush)

On Tuesday, June 26, six artists took the ferry to Ward’s Island for a plein air session. The Weather was glorious with warm sunshine and balmy breezes wafting from the lake – a perfect day. The artists had a choice of locations. The Toronto skyline offered a striking backdrop to the sailboats moored along the water’s edge. The flower gardens included coral coloured geraniums and beautiful white peonies in full bloom. Cookies and coffee were provided by the Sunshine Center. The group met for lunch at about 12:30 and some even enjoyed BBQ hamburgers. All and all a very enjoyable day.

(Submitted by Ingrid Mueller)

From Van Gogh to O’Keefe, painting flowers has been a popular subject for centuries, and Michele Van Maurik has mastered the replication of nature’s magnificence.

The progeny of artistic Dutch parentage, Michele has been creating art since childhood and launched her artistic career as commercial artist and muralist.  However, her serious fine art career didn’t start until relatively recently in 2010.  Since then, she has blossomed into an internationally recognized oil painter, having been twice invited to represent Canada at the Societe Nationale de Beaux Art held at the Louvre. Her paintings Purple Rhapsody and Sundance were juried into the Artistes du Monde Cannes by Marina Picasso.

Her work has also been published in a number of international magazines including American Art Collector.

Having accomplished so much in so short a time, Michele came to our Friday Night Club with some very down to earth tips and tricks she uses in her studio that simply make her life easier, more efficient and productive. The following is a list of her top ten painting hacks:

  1. Magic Colour Palette Colour matching guide: Shows various pigments mixed with white and also darkened with black with cut out window.  Great for determining which pigment to use in your painting.
  2. Easel Brace: Make a simple easel brace using foam core and dollar store clamps.  Great for supporting a maul stick.
  3. Maul Stick: Purchase inexpensive dowel at a hardware store and make your own maul stick by putting a rubber stopper on the end.
  4. Plastic laptop cases from De Serres are an excellent alternative to a stay wet palette. Lightweight and portable, they keep paint fresh for several days.
  5. A music stand makes a great vertical palette stand.
  6. Grey Matters palette paper fits nicely inside the plastic laptop cases and comes with a colour wheel, greyscale and list of pigments printed on the cover.
  7. A mid tone grey pastel pencil is great for drawing on canvas, blends nicely away when paint is applied over top.
  8. Cotton swaps (Q-tips) are very useful when it comes to softening edges in a painting, also great for lifting colour.
  9. A partially rolled up towel makes a good brush rest.
  10. When viewing artwork or a painting with red glasses or red acetate, it helps eliminate the middle values and simplifies the shapes to determine the values in your painting.

Michele’s work is inspiring, as she works large and very smooth. Her passion is in detail, but not too much so as to prevent the viewer’s imagination.

A lovely evening with a great Canadian artist.

You can see more of her work at    http://www.michelevanmaurik.com/index.html