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Preferred GAS over AGO yesterday

A whirlwind visit by Crawf and Ulli gave us a chance to visit the AGO for a look at the current Outsiders photography show. I would not recommend that show particularly, but on the way home (via our embarrassingly unreliable streetcar service that ended with a taxi ride), we had some luck.

block

Elizabeth Forrest was demonstrating Japanese woodblock printing at the Gerrard Art Space when we returned to our neighbourhood. In a relaxed but informative session, Elizabeth showed us how she makes her prints, impression after impression, on rice paper. Her “inks” are water-based gouache colours, mixed with a rice paste to smooth their flow.

gouache

While experience, skill and knowledge of materials are obviously required, it’s a lot easier to understand the process when you can see it being done. I was surprised to learn how much each print could be controlled, adjusted, strengthened and modified as it was being made. Rather than being a simple, repetitive process with consistently predictable results, there is room for creativity in every impression and a moment of anticipation as the paper is lifted.

Thus, no two prints are ever exactly the same, and, if the printmaker chooses, each impression can produce outcomes that are very distinct from one another.

print

I was reminded of Japanese raku pottery firings I have seen … where skill and knowledge set parameters around what the glazes will do, but leave an element of uncertainty and potential for delightful surprise. I like the aesthetic. Elizabeth’s Japanese block prints share some of it.

Bill’s Blog — https://billandersen.ca

Fairmount Park, May 18 and 25

fairmountI see this poster going up around Beach Hill, so why not here, too?

Our Fairmount Park Farm Market is back in action, providing kits and tips to help us start our own gardens.

Wednesdays, again this year … with merchants to sell farm-fresh produce to those of us who won’t be growing our own.

Live music. Demonstrations (non-political). Free mulch. Good stuff. Wednesdays
May 18th and 25th
3:00 p.m.– 7:00 p.m

Green bins: Tasty, inside and out

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 I was concerned about wasting 31 million dollars on new green bins that might not work. I should have been thinking about the millions more we will waste, replacing the chewed ones.

The Pink Nail Polish Story

Always sending delicious meals to her children’s family, a mother complained that she was constantly getting the wrong cookware returned to her.

pink-nail-polish-story

Her daughter-in-law decided to mark her own dishes with a dot of pink nail polish, to identify them clearly. When the mother heard about the solution, she thought it was such a good idea, she put dots of pink nail polish on her own dishes.

Would a Fitbit make me fitter?

Should I park my old pedometer and get a Fitbit? I’ve  seen two of them in the last two days. Paul showed me his wristband yesterday. Much more stylish than my analogue job. Tells time and other things, too.

pedometer-vs-fitbit

Today, my 73 year old neighbour was sporting the same Fitbit model, and she revealed a big advantage.

With my old pedometer, I have to walk the streets for a couple of hours to get 10,000 steps for the day. With her Fitbit, my neighbour had well over 12,000 steps today, before 5:00 pm., and she hadn’t left her house!

Yesterday, she got over 17,000 steps because she walked to the Danforth for shopping. When I walk to the Danforth with my old gizmo, I get only a thousand steps each way, or less.

Toronto raccoons bin defeated?

The racoon-proof animal-resistant green bins are beginning to arrive. I hope we get more than entertaining videos for our 31 million dollars.

It would please me if I could put out the garbage the night before pick-up day, confident that I wouldn’t have a mess to clean up in the morning. We’ll see. Raccoons are smart.

A neighbour told me that a Beach Hill resident is in charge of all things green bin in the city. Will we be proud, or will we be more like Leafs fans?

Green P Premiere

While Andrew Horne was painting, “Seriously?” (post below), another event was happening in the Green P parking lot behind the Flying Pony Gallery/Café.

vaisakhi-festival

Vaisakhi, a Sikh Harvest Festival was the first event to be celebrated in the newly spruced-up lot. Organizers were uncertain about the turnout they might get, especially on a still-chilly evening on the last day of April.

As you see, hundreds came out to dance to live drum music and song. Food was given out and Bazaar merchants provided draw gifts which were won on the spot. In terms of things to do and see, it was a modest beginning, but I’ll bet it grows. The venue is inviting, not just because of new paving, but also new plant beds, trees and quarry stone hardscaping to sit on.

Last summer, the laneway acquired vibrant colour and design, thanks to a major graffiti alley project. Vaisakhi was just the first of many Green P events to come, I’m sure. Congratulations to the organizers and local BIA for getting things started.