Archive for the ‘My Art’ Category

Light Installation - ZoominescenceWhat a wonderful way to finish 2016 - with a project that I'm super proud of and can't stop talking about. I was happy to partner with the Dying Light Collective, partly because I got to work with my partner, Matt, and partly because they were able to make it look a lot better than I would have on my own. I was in charge of building the sculpture and they made the lights run.

Our local Edmonton Valley Zoo has been hosting a winter light festival called Zoominescence for a few years, but this was the first year they invited artists to submit projects. We sent in a proposal back in July and were pretty excited when it was accepted.

Our idea was to build a large anatomical heart with light flowing in and out of it to represent blood. The theme that they gave us was renewable energy so we wanted to set up a mechanism where people would generate the power needed to run the lights. It didn't turn out exactly how we wanted but we were still happy with it in the end. (more…)

2016 has been a strange year, hasn't it? The world went a little nuts and the news brought me to tears more than a few times. Professionally I also hit some bumps with cancelled workshops and low art sales. It would be easy enough to write the year off completely.

But it wasn't all bad, and I think it's important to spend some time looking back at the good things that happened. In my personal life I know there are plenty of happy memories to revisit but I was feeling down about my professional progress, until I made this list. Looking at all the projects I've worked on over the year remind me that even thought there's a lot that I want to do differently next year, I still have plenty to be proud of.

Here are my top creative projects, moments, and adventures from 2016.  (more…)

science artPeople often ask me if I studied medicine or biology when they see my work. And though I've never actually taken a biology class (I was more into physics in high school and university) I'm finding myself more and more interested in it. I was inspired to make these sculptures by the paper mache models I saw in the Mutter Museum of Medical History in Philadelphia, and spend a lot of time looking at anatomical diagrams and imagery.

I'm still interested in physics and other sciences and get a huge kick out of art that is inspired by science. Maybe I'm too nerdy for my own good, but work like this gets my neurons firing like crazy with ideas and connections.

Here are some more artists that draw on the sciences for their amazing work: (more…)

installation at Kaleido FestivalI just spent my weekend doing what I love more than almost anything: creating a piece of art that inspired wonder and joy in the people who saw it. I worked with my friend, Kristi Gurski, to create an art installation on a lamppost as part of Kaleido Family Arts Festival's '24-Hour Deck Out a Lamppost Competition.' It was a lot of work but I was so happy with how it turned out and I would do it all again to see the way peoples' faces lit up when they caught sight of it.

Last year I wrote about Kaleido Festival and how much I love the lamppost installations that artists do every year. It's wonderful to see what artists do with such specific constraints, and how much the installations help to transform the festival grounds into something magical and unexpected. Since I was working for the festival, last year I threw together a quick installation but this year I decided to do it right. I asked Kristi, who has done two lamppost installations in the past, to join me and was so glad that she said yes.

Read on to learn about how we came up with our ideas, how we put it together, and what I learned in the process. (more…)

courage gala 07 Last week I finished a commission for Edmonton's Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital Foundation and their fundraising event The Courage Gala. The assignment was to create a 'map' that described what the proceeds from the Gala were able to achieve over the last five years. When I found out that they wanted me to use both maps and anatomy imagery, I was very excited—my two favourite things!. The project was a lot of work and I had to put myself under house arrest for two weeks to get it done on time, but I was happy with how it turned out. Here's how I put this piece together.

courage gala (more…)

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One of my favourite parts of December is taking time to look back over the year and celebrate everything that happened. It's something I only started doing in the last couple of years and I find that it is so worth it. I usually make a list of all my favourite memories and moments, and the accomplishments that I'm especially proud of. Then I think about what I want more of for the coming year, and start working on a plan.

This year part of the recap involves looking at the creative projects that I undertook and appreciating everything that I made this year. Next week watch for a post about my creative goals for the New Year.

This year I made an effort to get outside of my creative comfort zone a little and try some new things. And I think I was successful. I got involved with some group projects, tried my first creative job, and learned new techniques. Here's my list of creative accomplishments for 2015: (more…)

sea balls

My contribution to the installations

I spent the last couple of months working for one of my favourite events here in Edmonton. The Kaleido Family Arts Festival is an exuberant celebration of the arts that happens over a weekend in September every year. It started as a way to help make the neighbourhood safer and friendlier to artists and families. After 10 years it continues to grow, with music, dance, circus, theatre, art installations, and more. When they asked me to coordinate their installation competitions, I jumped at the chance to be part of something that I believe so strongly in. (more…)

window displayAs you may have seen on Instagram, last week I set up a window display at a popular hotel here in Edmonton. It's part of an amazing project called Green Window City, which invited artists to pair up with businesses in a busy shopping and restaurant district. The goal of the project is to reclaim otherwise wasted materials to make art, and to celebrate Pride Week here in Edmonton. Nineteen installations went up last week, and I feel so lucky to have made one of them. (more…)

Valentine's day cardsYou guys I am so excited about these cards. I'm not even really sure why I'm that excited. Maybe because it's the first time I've tried something like this, maybe because it's the first goal I get to check off my list for 2015 or maybe because I just really, really like the way they look. Either way, I am super excited to unveil my first ever line of body-part themed, punny Valentine's Day cards. I say Valentine's because it's coming up but really these cards are great for any occasion when you want to tell someone that you care (or you have a pesky admirer that you want to scare away...). (more…)

People who see my heart sculptures are often amazed that I make them entirely out of paper. When we think of paper mache, we usually think of children mucking around with newspaper and balloons, though the truth is that people have been making sturdy, beautiful objects out of paper mache for centuries - probably for as long as there has been paper.

Here are some of the ways that paper mache has been used that I find most interesting:

Medical models

Back in the 19th and early 20th centuries, religious dictates made it hard for medical schools to find bodies to use for dissection so models had to be made to teach students about anatomy. Many of these  were painstakingly made with paper mache. If you haven't seen these models, I highly recommend taking a look (if you're not too squeamish!). They are truly beautiful. You can find a good selection here.