PAINT ONTARIO WINNER HOSTING WORKSHOP
On Saturday, Sept. 30, the South Huron Art Centre will be hosting a one-day ‘plein air’ workshop with Paint Ontario winner, Denise Antaya, at the Ausable Bayfield Morrison Dam pavilion located just outside Exeter, ON.
Antaya received signature status in Oil Painters of America and the National Oil and Acrylic Painter Society. She is a member of the International Guild of Realism where she received numerous awards which included “Best in Show” for “Catching the Light”. She is a member of the Salmagundi Club in NY, one of North America’s oldest clubs where noted artists like Norman Rockwell, Emil Carlsen, N.C. Wyeth (to name a few) belonged.
Her work has received numerous awards and is in collectors’ homes in Canada, the United States, the UK and even as far as Singapore. She was chosen for an article in Fine Art Connoisseur as “Five to Watch”.
Antaya just returned from jurying a National Show in Colorado and doing a demo to kick off their ‘plein air’ event for the National Oil and Acrylic Painting Society.
In addition to winning this year’s Paint Ontario, Antaya recently won honorable mention in a prestigious ‘plein air’ exhibit in Spain.
Plein air painting is about leaving the four walls of the studio behind and experiencing painting and drawing in the landscape. The practice goes back for centuries but was truly made into an art form by the French Impressionists. Their desire to paint light and its changing, ephemeral qualities, coupled with the creation of transportable paint tubes and the box easel—the precursor to the ‘plein air’ easels of today—allowed artists the freedom to paint “en plein air,” which is the French expression for “in the open air.”
Recently, Ruth Anne Merner, one of the board directors for the South Huron Arts Centre, caught up with Antaya and asked her about her work. Part I of their conversation follows in the form of a Q&A:
Merner: What drew you to ‘plein air’ painting?
Antaya: I love painting and I love outdoors so it seemed a perfect combination. I also know how photos lie. They blow out lights and make darks too dark. I realized in order to improve my studio work, direct observation was needed. So, when a photo makes things too dark, I can draw on my experience in the field to help me make decisions on color etc. Both are good practices – studio and ‘plein air’ for a well-rounded education.
Merner: How do you choose your painting locations?
Antaya: Choosing painting locations is based on light. A boring, everyday scene can become exciting based on light. It has to grab me. But also, the challenge of making a regular everyday scene appealing will also stop me. Some days I just go to a spot and start painting and using artistic licence, come up with something. I don’t always succeed but failures are great for learning purposes. No painting time is wasted.
Merner: What challenges do you face when painting outdoors?
Antaya: Outdoor painting challenges like no other. You face wind, rain, heat, cold, bugs, and changing light faster than you can get it down. My biggest challenges are me and my need to get things straight…that’s why buildings are so hard for me.
Merner: Do you have a favorite time of day or season to paint outdoors?
Antaya: Fall is my favorite – love the colors not only in the trees, but the grasses and weeds. Love early morning or as the sun starts to go down. Long shadows and golden light are great for composition. Each season has its beauty though. Winter is also appealing, despite the cold.
Merner: Can you describe your typical ‘plein air’ setup and materials?
Antaya: Tripod, Edgeprogear Sketchbook, paintbrushes, paint, Gamsol, paper towels, panel carrier for wet panels, linen panels, viewfinder to assess composition all in a backpack that has wheels so can be carried, pulled, or worn as a backpack. I stand when I work. I also have an umbrella. A hat is a must, sunscreen, bug spray, water, and a snack. Comfortable shoes, dress in layers. Often the day starts cool and warms up as you go, so it’s great to be able to take off jackets etc. as you go. I also bring gloves but don’t always wear them. (You should though.)
Look for Part II of Ruth Anne Merner’s interview with ‘Plein Air” Artist Denise Antaya in the next issue of the Bayfield Breeze, Sept. 20.
To register for the Sept. 30 (rain date Oct. 1st) workshop please visit southhuronartscentre.ca.
TIME TO ORDER TREES FOR AUTUMN PLANTING
This photo shows an Ausable Bayfield Conservation tree planting crew at work. Hundreds of local participating landowners plant tens of thousands of trees each year in Ausable Bayfield watersheds. (Submitted photo)
Autumn doesn’t begin until Sept. 23 but now is a good time to order trees for fall planting, according to Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA).
Local landowners plant tens of thousands of trees each year through spring and fall tree order programs. This tree planting provides benefits to individual properties and also to the larger watershed community, said Ian Jean, Forestry and Land Stewardship Specialist with ABCA.
“People who plant trees can see benefits at the property scale in terms of wind protection and shade and more birds and wildlife,” he said. “The benefits of individuals planting trees extend to the entire watershed community in protecting our shared soil and water resources and improving the resiliency of our natural systems which face new pests and a changing climate.”
Spring and fall are both good times to plant trees, Jean said. “Weather cools in these seasons,” he said. “While trees are in dormancy in fall or spring, they are better able to handle the stress of transplanting.”
Certain trees, types of planting stock, and locations are better suited than others to fall planting.
“Frost heaving can be a problem for fall planting of very small, bare-root seedlings, which are available in spring,” Jean said. “In the fall, we handle only larger trees in pots or in root-ball-in-burlap format and we have good success planting those larger-size trees.”
The two-foot Cedar and Spruce are great choices for field windbreaks and watercourse buffers. The potted deciduous trees can be planted to add diversity to help make forests more resilient to future environmental pressures across the watershed. Properties, landowner goals, and projects are all unique, which makes it important to plan tree planting projects on an individual basis for site success, staff say. However, what all tree planting and other stewardship projects have in common, is their contribution towards watershed health, providing benefits which extend beyond the limits of the project site itself.
“Each individual project is part of a larger, collaborative effort,” Jean said. “Every year this involves hundreds of people planting tens of thousands of trees, maintaining watercourse buffers, planting cover crops, each doing their part to improve watershed conditions. It is important to recognize the tremendous support for watershed stewardship within our community.”
The Forestry and Land Stewardship Specialist encourages interested landowners to visit abca.ca for the fall tree order form or to give him a call at 519 235-2610 or toll-free 1-888-286-2610 to discuss planting projects.
“We’re happy to help with project design and help to apply for funding for eligible projects,” he said. There is a cost to order trees through the fall tree planting program but there may be incentive grants available for some tree planting projects. Cost-share funding may be available depending on the type and size of project, location and specific program details.
ABCA accepts fall tree orders (emailed, mailed or faxed) until Sept 15. People can order trees in person or by phone, accompanied by payment, until Sept. 29. To access the form visit: Tree Orders.
ABCA thanks those who support, and contribute towards, improving watershed conditions. These include federal, provincial, county and municipal partners as well as agencies and private donors.
KAYAK LAUNCH ADDED TO RESERVOIR
Susan Riddell and Brianne Webber hosted a women’s sunset kayak night, on Morrison Reservoir, on Aug. 22. More than 100 kayakers took part in the event to celebrate the installation of the kayak launch. (Submitted photo)
Community members have raised $10,500 for a new floating kayak launch at Morrison Dam Conservation Area (MDCA) east of Exeter. The kayak launch was possible thanks to a community-wide fundraising campaign led by Exeter resident Susan Riddell.
The kayak launch allows kayakers to safely enter and exit Morrison Reservoir (Morrison Lake).
Nathan Schoelier is Stewardship and Lands Manager with Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA). He said the new kayak launch, installed at the conservation area, is thanks to the initiative and dedication of the organizers and the community.
“This is an amazing example of community leadership and effort,” he said. “This simply would not have been possible without the hard work of the organizers and without the support of the community.”
The kayak launch offers a way for people to experience nature and gain a new appreciation for nature in their own backyard, he added.
Riddell said it was worth all the effort to see the smiles on the faces of people using the new kayak launch. She said kayaking is a wonderful way to enjoy nature.
“Kayaking in nature is good for physical health and for mental health,” she said.
She thanked all the people in the community who supported the cause, including kayakers, local donors, businesses and service organizations.
Riddell and Brianne Webber hosted a women’s sunset kayak night, on Morrison Reservoir, on Aug. 22. More than 100 kayakers took part in the event to celebrate the installation of the kayak launch. The kayak night raised $1,600 for Big Brothers Big Sisters of South Huron, thanks to the raffle of a new kayak that was generously donated by Canadian Tire in Exeter.
LIVERY FILM FEST BRINGS TIFF TO TOWN
This fall, the Livery will be showing Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) movies at the Park Theatre on The Square in Goderich once again.
On Thursday, Sept. 21 the first film will be “The Lesson”; followed by “You Hurt My Feelings” on Oct. 19.
The Lesson is the story of Liam, played by Daryl McCormack (Good Luck to You, Leo Grande) who is an aspiring and ambitious young writer. He eagerly accepts a tutoring position at the family estate of his idol, renown author J.M. Sinclair, played by Richard E. Grant (Gosford Park). But soon, Liam realizes that he is ensnared in a web of family secrets, resentment, and retribution. Sinclair, his wife Hélène, played by Julie Delpy (Before Sunrise, Before Sunset, Before Midnight), and their son all guard a dark past, one that threatens Liam’s future as well as their own.
Organizers of the showing are very excited to see this film, with its twisty noir plot and great actors!
You Hurt My Feelings stars Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Seinfeld, Veep). She plays a writer, whose husband, played by Tobias Menzies (The Crown) praises the draft of her book, but whom she later hears saying it isn’t very good. Critics say the film is “smart, funny, and above all entertaining”.
Event organizers believe this film experience should be a lot of fun!
Both films will begin at 7 p.m., with the box office opening at 6:30 p.m.
Tickets are $12, or $8 for Livery members. People are reminded to renew their memberships before the first film!
Plans are in order to show films monthly on Thursdays through the fall, winter and spring. And after each viewing attendees are encouraged to meet up afterward at Paddy O’Neils in the Bedford Hotel.
For more information, please email Chair of the Livery Film Fest Committee, Rob McAuley at firstname.lastname@example.org.
SEPTEMBER BUSY MONTH FOR HURON HOSPICE FUNDRAISING EVENTS
Get Ready! In September, Huron Hospice has something for everyone.
Join them on Saturday, Sept. 23, when the lights go up on the “No Place Like Home” concert Live from the Kingsbridge Centre.
The concert will begin at 6:30 p.m. with headliners: Amanda McClure and Tom Burke from Seaforth; Josh Geddis, Steve Dawe and Jess Langan from Bayfield and Clinton; and Clinton’s own Grant McMillan.
First held in 2020 as a virtual event, No Place Like Home was an original Huron Hospice solution to fundraising during a pandemic.
“We thought it would be One Night Only! However, the event was so successful and so much fun that we just had to do it again and again and again,” said Christopher Walker Huron Hospice, manager of Fund Development. “The event allows us to celebrate the best of our home, Huron County.”
Artistic Director of the Blyth Festival, Gil Garratt and Member of Parliament, Ben Lobb will join Huron County Coordinator of Tourism and Local Food, Alecia Anderson as celebrity emcees.
“We are honored to have the three of them join us again. Each brings a commitment to Huron County and a deep understanding of the arts scene. The fact that Alecia, Ben and Gil are making time for Huron Hospice shows how important the Hospice is for everyone across the County,” commented Walker.
Walker also thanked the creative team at Faux Pop Studios in Goderich for their dedication to the event.
“Faux Pop helps us put together a wonderful show. It will be an entertaining evening,” he said.
For those who wish to attend the concert in person, tickets are selling for $50 each. This ticket price includes a complimentary Concert Shuttle. Guests must reserve their shuttle seats when they buy their tickets on a first-come, first-serve basis. The event will have a cash bar service and beef-on-a-bun. A vegetarian option and chocolate chip cookies will also be available. Goodwill donations will cover food costs.
Funds raised at the event ensure the Hospice can support over 200 families across Huron County at no cost. The last thing a family should worry about is the cost of hospice palliative services at the end of life.
For more information and to purchase tickets visit: Telethon 2023.
Anyone looking for ways to bring harmony and balance to their life may like to participate in a two-day workshop, Sept. 21-22 helping people understand the principles of Feng Shui in the home, garden and workplace.Led by Feng Shui instructor Helen Varekamp, participants will learn to change their thinking, their surroundings, and their lives. Huron Hospice will receive proceeds from this workshop. To register visit: Feng Shui Workshop.
EDUCATORS UNITE FOR NATURE WORKSHOPS
Denise Iszczuk, Educational consultant (left) and Janneke Vorsteveld of Seeds Rooted in Youth are excited to offer a couple of workshops for educators with regards to getting youth outdoors this Autumn. (Submitted photo)
Fall begins on Sept. 23. At the same time, a new education series will also begin – “No Boundaries Nature Workshops – Falling for Nature”. Partnering for this educator professional development workshop series is Janneke Vorsteveld of Seeds Rooted in Youth and Denise Iszczuk, Educational consultant. Together they have a combined total of almost fifty years of teaching.
“Any outdoor space provides a valuable learning experience for students,” said Vorsteveld.
Celebrate back to school, with fall themed strategies for teaching outside. This workshop is geared to anyone who wants to learn more about teaching and learning outdoors.
“We wanted to give back to the community through a workshop which would help give educators the tools and confidence to bring learning beyond the walls of the classroom,” said Iszczuk.
Sign up now for the session to be held on Sept. 23, 9:30-11 a.m. at Bad Apple Brewing in Bluewater and Sept. 27 from 4:30-6 p.m. at the West Perth Community Centre in Mitchell.
Registration is limited and registration can be found at seedsrooted.org. All registrants will receive access to curated teaching materials with Ontario Curriculum connections for teaching outdoors this Autumn because children need nature.
Register by Labour Day to be entered into a draw for a new book from local author Jon-Erik Lappano called “Martin and the River”. Organizers are pleased to support Lappano’s new book as it examines a child’s perspective on making meaningful connections to nature in the city and on finding ways to accept changes.
For more information, please contact Denise Iszczuk by calling 519 200-8662 or Janneke Vorsteveld at 519 440-2189.
Bad Apple Brewing is located at 73463 Bluewater Hwy near Bayfield and the West Perth Community Centre is located at 185 Wellington Street in Mitchell, ON.
PUBLIC INPUT REQUESTED FOR NEW WATERSHED STRATEGY
Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) is preparing for the future of local conservation by creating a new watershed strategy. The local conservation organization is looking to the public to provide input into this plan to guide local watershed management beyond 2023.
The new strategy builds upon the work of the community to develop the Conservation Strategy (in 2011) and the work of staff to develop the previous Watershed Management Strategy in 2015.
A new Watershed-Based Resource Management Strategy (WBRMS) will fulfil requirements of the “Conservation Authorities Act” (CA Act). It will also meet local needs to protect life and property from natural hazards and to manage and protect resources on a watershed basis.
Kate Monk is ABCA Projects Coordinator. She describes the new strategy as an “overarching document” that guides all of the conservation authority’s work with the watershed community.
“This Strategy goes beyond a traditional watershed planning document,” she said. “It is also a business plan for ABCA that includes financial information. It identifies opportunities to engage landowners in the work needed to address issues facing our watershed communities. It also identifies opportunities to collaborate with other organizations.”
The Strategy will:
- Evaluate programs and recommend future programs and services to address watershed issues facing local communities.
- Identify infrastructure needs such as stream gauges, flood forecasting and warning communications, water and erosion control projects, and major maintenance of existing projects.
- Identify future studies and knowledge needs such as subwatershed studies, inventories, research, and stormwater management plans.
- Include a business plan for delivering programs and services.
- Integrate climate change adaptation and resiliency into watershed management.
- Incorporate previous reports and studies.
- Meet the requirements of the CA Act.
The purpose of the CA Act is “…to provide for the organization and delivery of programs and services that further the conservation, restoration, development and management of natural resources in watersheds in Ontario.”
The ABCA Board of Directors has approved release of the first part of the WBRMS document for public review. Interested people can review the first phase of the Strategy and provide feedback through a survey which includes spaces for written comments. The feedback period for the first phase of the document continues until Sept. 15 at 1 p.m. This first phase of consultation includes the mission and vision statements, strategic priorities, guiding principles for decision-making, and objectives. The Strategy includes characterization of the watershed, setting priorities and objectives, evaluating progress made through the previous strategies, identifying gaps, and creating action plans.
To learn more about the WBRMS, people can visit the: Public Consultation Page on the ABCA website. If they have questions, they can contact staff by telephone at 519 235-2610 or toll-free 1-888-286-2610.