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July 22 2012
Cortes.....T'ai-Li, A Beautiful Grey Day"
I set up this time under the covered tent area past the commons. It was raining pretty hard this day. It was interesting to work with shades of grey. I loved how the trees seemingly plunged down into the crevice. I was so involved in painting that I had not noticed a squirrel sitting on the deck a couple of feet behind me eating salal flowers. He had not noticed me either,so when I stepped back to take a look at my work, he screeched, jumped off the deck and I almost jumped out of my skin. He peeked wide eyed over the edge to see what the heck I was before running off chattering about the flowers he had to leave behind. I do find that when I am involved in a painting outdoors, the wildlife appear out of nowhere. It is almost like I blend into my surroundings and they do not see me. The next day I went to take another look at the scene, and it looked nothing like it did the day before. I never would have noticed this pattern on a sunny day. I am so glad I captured it in the so called dreary light.
5041 Insomniac
I have since painted this scene onto a large 24x36 canvas.

Posted by Cindy Mawle at 08:33 0 Comments


July 18 2012
Continued..."T'ai-Li Lodge from Red Granite Bluff"
On this day my artist friend and I hiked up to the top of Red Granite Bluff to paint. She set up on the picnic table and I set up on the next rock level down. The weather was absolutely beautiful and I managed to finish two small pieces, one looking straight ahead to the mountains and this one towards and down to the lodge. After I was finished I lay down under the shade of a scrubby tree, put my earphones in and listened to some Stevie Ray Vaughn...It was amazing. One of those times when you wish you could make time stand still…and it did for as long as it could… 5040-The Race Against Time

Posted by Cindy Mawle at 10:06 0 Comments


July 18 2012
Cortes continued...Tour of the Childrens Forest
I was taken on a walking tour through the Children's Forest, a piece of land that the Cortes Island Trust is working on purchasing from Island Timberlands. It was so beautiful and I would highly recommend the tour. I have grown up around forests but I was still "blown away" by the peaceful beauty in this particular area. I just hope that they are able to raise the funds to keep this part of the forest in its natural state. I did not paint this in the forest, because I was walking with others, but worked from the photographs and the images within my mind's eye as soon as I returned from the walk. I have painted a larger 12x36 version of this piece recently.

Posted by Cindy Mawle at 07:27 0 Comments


July 14 2012
Cortes continued...T'ai Li Cabin View
This was the first painting I did on my first morning. It was drizzly and misty and I hunkered down under the covered cabin just past the commons. I actually was quite exasperated with the rocks and it just wasn't turning out the way I had envisioned. Probably just a case of the first painting…it's a pressure thing. Anyways I left the picture stuck onto the wooden chair on the deck to dry in disgust and moved on to the next location. Later that day I collected the little painting and decided to just play with it in the commons and see what I could do with it, what did I have to lose? So this is what came of it. Kind of a rock abstract thing. I like it, but don't compare it too closely to the location, it is a little different.50-10 Valentines Bouquet

I have been very busy lately with summer, granddaughter, painting, jewelry, garden I have not been putting up the cortes entries like I had intended....but hopefully I will be able to continue daily!

Stay tuned!

Posted by Cindy Mawle at 10:18 0 Comments


July 09 2012
En Plein Aire Bowser!
Today the Salish Sea Market had a sorority group come by for a tour. I set up my easel and began a painting outside the Market at about 10 am, and they were expected by 10:30. When it came time to talk to this large group about what was on my easel, I turned on my extrovert alter ego and away I went! What fun! The group was wonderful and I felt totally comfortable.

Tomorrow I am taking a group of artists out on an ink and watercolor instructional "tour" in Comox. I am looking forward to it.

Salish Sea En plein Aire

I will be continuing my cortes entries tomorrow. Stay tuned!

Posted by Cindy Mawle at 04:21 0 Comments


July 08 2012
Cortes cont.... Low Tide, view from the Commons"
Here is the plein air version of the first Cortes blog entry image. Same scene, different look. The original painting (not the print) has more of a yellow glow to it, the print picked up more orange. Some colors are difficult to duplicate in print but I think it still works great.


Posted by Cindy Mawle at 09:11 0 Comments


July 06 2012
Cortes Retreat continued......Tai-Li commons
I threw my plein-air pack onto my back and headed out to paint some arbutus trees. As you can see I got sidetracked. After deciding I didn't feel like painting trees after all, I clamored over rocks and logs to the beach. I eventually found a spot I could set down the three legs of the tripod easel safely, without dumping my setup on the rocks. If you are standing on the rocks in front of the solar panel which is in front of the sauna and showers, this is the view. The commons looks much older and worn here, but I kind of like it that way because it blends in well to its natural surroundings. Call it Artistic License! 5038 Brute Strength

Posted by Cindy Mawle at 07:25 0 Comments


July 04 2012
"T'ai-Li, view from the Commons".....
Well, it's actually from the rocks in front of the commons. I sat out on the rocks on my first day, with a pen and a notepad and tried to write down all my random thoughts to slow down my brain. "Stop the Noise!" so to speak. I always find the first day I arrive I need to offload all the junk going on in my head. Cortes is the perfect place to do it. So I sat out on the rocks with my camera and my glass of wine, drew some sketches then worked on this piece in the commons later on in the evening. What I am reminded of when I look at this piece is that I didn't see a whale. I had hoped to see one, as there had been a pod of killer whales in neighboring Quadra Island the day before. No such luck for me. I would like to do this painting on a 24x36" as well. If I do, it will be on my website. Day 85- Smelling Salts

Posted by Cindy Mawle at 07:45 0 Comments


July 03 2012
Cortes Retreat continued......
"Smelt beach,Cortes Island in June

I discovered there was a long, bumpy, oil pan dragger drive to Smelt beach and a smooth paved route that everyone else seemed to know about. (When I left the beach I took the easy route). It was a perfect morning, the light was just right for shadows on the sand. I parked my car and wandered down the empty beach a little ways, sizing up the scenery. I set up my easel and painted for at least half an hour before I noticed the sailboat beached in the sand. It was right smack in the middle and I never saw it. That happens often when I paint out of doors. People will be walking towards me on the beach and I am so focused on the scene that I wont notice them till they are almost right beside me. It can be startling at times. Someone had left a small beach fire smoldering a little ways from me and while I painted I was brought back into my childhood and camping on the beach. Even now when I look at the image I can smell the campfire... 5039- Women at Work

Posted by Cindy Mawle at 07:39 0 Comments


July 02 2012
My Cortes Retreat
My next few blog entries will be about my Cortes Island retreat copied from a booklet I have made up for the commons building at the resort.

An Artist's Retreat 2012

I have found my perfect artist retreat location at T'ai-Li. In 2010 I spent 3 days here with a very close friend to celebrate my birthday and vowed I would come back..... I did..... The next year I spent 4 days but found that it just was not long enough for me to unwind. My first two days were spent running around in circles and putting too much pressure on myself to paint something before my time ran out! Then I would just be settling into the solitary headspace and it would be time to pack up and go home. This year (2012) I saved my pennies and spent a whole week. An artist friend joined me for 2 days to explore, sketch and visit, and then I spent the rest of the week happily wandering the grounds and areas of the island on my own. I have perfected my "plein aire" backpack, it is light and easy to set up and take down, and most of all it is organized! Even on the rainy grey days I was able to get out painting under the many covered areas on the grounds. It was a great way to study my greys as you will see in the following images.

"Morning Retreat" 24x36" Acrylic on deep gallery canvas
The first day I arrived at the commons, I set up my easel and indoor painting area. I had not planned to paint for a few days, but knew when the mood struck, I would appreciate being able to dive right in. In the early morning and at the end of the day I noticed how the tide went out and exposed the wonderful yellow ochre sea weed that was attached to the rocks. One evening I painted a small piece on site (upcoming blog entry) to use as reference for a larger painting at home.

It was 5:00 am on the morning before my last. My large canvas still sat blank on the easel. I climbed out of bed and was heading for the coffee pot when I looked outside at the scene in front of the commons. It took my breath away! This was what I was meant to paint onto my blank staring canvas! I excitedly picked up my paintbrush, squeezed out my paint and got to work. Half of my brain complained loudly about the evident lack of caffeine but was quickly overruled by the crazy focused creative half which was intent on capturing that special something that would quickly change with a passing cloud, the incoming tide or the natural progression of the sun. I worked most of the day, then took the painting home for its final touches. Morning Retreat


Posted by Cindy Mawle at 08:57 1 Comments


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