Trouvé à Montréal

Big news from a fabulous Canadian city*… the 58th piece of art was dropped in Montreal and it was found (or “trouvé“)!

This was a “thumbnail landscape” – a small winter scene with a wee cabin and trees. It was dropped by a secret agent on a bench in a fitness center in the downtown area:

The finder of this little piece was delighted, and she tweeted her discovery later in the day! …although it seems to have migrated from the bench to a nearby window sill (Yes, everyone, we have a twitter account)

And this little winter scene was posted up on a bulletin board in its new home:

Once again, it seems this very fun project has brought some joy into someone’s life, and that’s the whole purpose.

The world is a tough place with so many stressful things happening. I believe firmly that art can connect us, bring us happiness, and keep us grounded during difficult times.

Please be kind and spread joy whenever you can.

*another piece of art was found a while ago in a different and equally fabulous Canadian city – here’s the story!

The start of 2020: trees and trilobites

Hi Friends! Welcome to the new decade!

I had some fun over the holiday season, and prepared six pieces to share around the world, including ones featuring mountains, trees, birds, and trilobites. It’s the first edition of ‘from the studio’ for this year!

The craggy trees was inspired by an old painting in my parent’s house when I was growing up – I believe it was in my Father’s “den” (which was essentially a room with his slides, paperwork, a desk, and a bookshelf containing various interesting titles on all kinds of things, including ships, natural disasters, and field guides – you can never have enough field guides!). I recall a piece of art on his wall that depicted warped trees emerging from steep mountains. There is something amazing about the ways tree roots find their way among the rocks to the smallest patches of soil. They persist.

There’s also something special about birds on a wire. Sometimes when I drive home from the train station after work I can see a nice row of our feathered friends on the overhead wires. They are often pigeons, but I’ve also seen starlings there, and sometimes I can’t quite make out the species because the silhouettes just don’t provide enough clues. So, this wee painting of three birds can be whatever species you wish it to be.

So there you have it: Six pieces to start off 2020. Keep your eyes out, folks, you just might come across one of these when you are out on your own adventures. Let me know if you find one!

Jellyfish in Japan

A little while ago I wrote about some of the recent pieces of art that left the studio – and I can now happily report that one of these pieces (a jellyfish, done in watercolor) has had a VERY big adventure, and was dropped off by a special secret agent in a hotel bar in Japan!

Here’s the proof:

I want to take a pause and give a big shout-out to my friends and family who have been helping move pieces of art around the world (soon some pieces will travel to Thailand and China which is *most* exciting!!).

Thanks for following along! Stay tuned for more adventures…

From the Studio (2)

It’s been a busy few months! But that hasn’t stop this wonderful project from continuing. Art has been dropped in many places, from Australia to New York City, and on planes and trains!

Today was a chance to work on a few more pieces, and here’s another edition of “From the Studio“. A crow, birch forest, and jellyfish. Where will these appear? Time will tell. Stay tuned…

Feather of the North

Hope is the thing with feathers” writes Emily Dickinson.

I have always loved our feathered friends. They are magical animals, seeing the world from the wing, finding small insects among cracks in tree bark, and singing sweet songs. I often draw birds, and a while back I decided that a feather was a suitable thing to paint and share. Here’s the piece just after completion in the studio:

Several weeks ago the Feather was dropped (maybe by me? Maybe by a secret agent…?) at the Yukon Visitor’s Centre, in Whitehorse (Yukon Territory, Canada).

Here’s the drop location (next to the GIANT relief map of the Yukon):

It was found! Hooray! The person who found it wrote to me soon after:

…”I found your feather art at the Yukon Visitors Center in Whitehorse. It’s marked “#27″…. Finding this just makes the trip here all the more special. I am on a trip here, to my childhood home, with my parents. The Yukon has an almost indefinable magic about it. I left 30 years ago, and no place I have been since has ever felt like home. Thank you for adding another element of specialness to this trip down memory lane

Yes, the Yukon is magical.

Yes, feathers bring hope.

Yes, joy is everywhere, you just have to be ready to look for it, and accept it.

It is so fitting that the feather found the right home, and so fitting that it meant something to its finder.

Here’s the feather in its new home:

…As an aside, and for those interested, there have been about 30 pieces leave the studio since the project started in January; the pieces have been dropped around the world, from Australia to England, Canada to Mexico. Three have been reported as ‘found’, although I’m confident all have been found and enjoyed! Of those found, one was reported from the USA, one from Portugal, and now this one, in northern Canada. By all accounts, it is thrilling to have these three stories to share – all my hopes and dreams for this project are being realized! Stay tuned, friends, as there will be many more stories to come…

Portugal Gallery

The stories are developing.

A shell made its way to Portugal, and ended up in a fantastic hotel in Lisbon, called the Gallery House. A very lovely person who works there found the art, and it now has a home on her desk.

The art had special meaning to her. Her mother called her “Concha” which, in English, means shell. In an email to me she writes:

Thank you for giving happiness to me”.

No more words are needed.

Art found in a coffee shop!

Big news, friends.

Art was found. In a coffee shop (somewhere in the eastern part of the USA).

This was piece number four – a mushroom. It was created in January, and dropped by a secret agent in early February.

The person who found it posted a photo on Instagram:

I received an email about it. The message was that the art was found, it brought joy, and offered an opportunity for conversation between a parent and a teenager. These are all good things.

Do you have questions about this project? Don’t hesitate to reach out. And I hope you find some art out there in this big world.

You might ask… what does the mushroom mean?

From my point of view, fungi are silent and helpful partners to so many things. They help trees grow, they help things decompose, and mushrooms can provide little careful homes for other creatures – you can often find small beetles or other critters living in between the gills of some species. Some mushrooms are also tasty to eat (but some are also poisonous, so BE CAREFUL). I hope that next time you are out and about in a forest, and the weather is right for it, you might be lucky enough to spot some lovely fungi. They are everywhere, you know!

First Art

Here’s the first piece of art that will leave the studio – number one. A blue jay, seen at a bird feeder over the December break. Shimmering feathers, regal crest. Voracious in its eating habits. These corvids can clear a feeder in minutes, it seems.

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