Posts tagged ‘Indigenous writers’

SUN INFINITY MOON (2)

we are gearing up! we have version 2 almost ready to go! perfect time for it too it being close to Halloween! a HORROR story indeed…

we’re hoping it’s going to look something like this. that painting: Feeding the Wolves, is an acrylic on canvas, 36×48 inches, c. 2008, and now long gone, in a private collection somewhere on the west coast. i hope whatever photos we have of that painting… we can doctor up for this new cover.

not sure which version of the early layouts (what we see here is Version 1) this is but what i can confirm is this is the opening bit! i cut this screen just short of the “coarse language” which this story is full of! you see… me don’t speak english too good no how! actually it goes like this: me no speak english too good no how! (messed that first one up! ha!)

ah yes… May 11, 1996. i remember it well. what grand and glorious times. remember the days when a camera used film and you had a walloping 36 frames to use?

the opening to “Last Month” or what we’ve had in a few short story contests over the years: “The Lottery Ticket”. you see that bit on page 29: (Oh my gods I loved her words!) how many editors have we had who flagged that “gods” bit? ha ha!

the opening bit to Chapter 3: Last Week. and so the horror begins! truth is i can crack open that little novel and read it from any a where’s and enjoy it quite nicely!

now to get it tuned up and the layout folks i hope this time don’t cause a fuss!

check out these words of wisdom: Don’t ask for feedback on your product, ideas or business just for validation. You want to tell the people who can help you move your idea forward. If you’re just looking to your friend, partner, parents, etc. for validation-be careful-It can stop a million dollar idea in its tracks at the beginning!

(and it has throughout my own past!!!)

my old buddy Sara Blakely, those are her words of wisdom.

and so! we wait now for the new layouts, the new cover, etc. the bills have been paid so the road is opened and lined with signs!

what it is is this: authentic Indigenous literature written by a real live Indian! we’re not doing the Joseph Boyden trip or the Grey Owl who done it now…

so GO!

twinravens ART on the street

that is “Power Bird”, acrylic on canvas board, 14×18 inches, by anishnabe artist Mark Seabrook! the lovely gal holding the painting is from Central Asia! and we are on the streets of Vanier on October 23rd.

the photographer is from Central America! and of course yours truly is from Central Canada: the grand and glorious Manitoulin Island, Ontario, to be exact.

so yes… what we’re doing there, i’m not a hundred percent sure where we’re off to with the idea but it belongs to them and i’ll wait and see what becomes of it. stayed tuned for an update.

Power Bird, the last of the finished paintings before the pandemic hit and shut us down. we at twinravens had a wonderful list of road shows we were to attend, bringing the art to the people, but sadly: no dice.

and no Halloween this year… now i seriously have the blues over that one as this boy is a serious halloween fan! more than xmas. more than new year. Halloween is THE fave, but sadly, and again: no dice. what to do with this Saturday night?

it might be me and where the wild things are come Halloween this year. (painting: anishnabe at night, acrylic on canvas board, 14×14 inches, c. 2005. Private Collection.)

The Swanky 9th, Vol. 3

made the drive from O Town to here using highway 7, thought i’d switch things up! and so here we are at another midnight, on the 9th. let me tell riding down highway 7 over there by Carleton Place… did i tell you about that scene i came upon while driving home from my last visit to the 9th? it was 2 sunday evenings ago: i came across a scene of carnage all over the highway and vehicles pulled over including a couple of transport trucks. as i rolled up on the scene, around 10 p.m., i also saw a very mangled bicycle and someone lying on the road and it was clear to me that whoever that was on the road was going to die that night. they were still alive when i passed but i knew… cops hadn’t arrived. no ambulance. so it had just happened.

the next day i was stuck in a 2 p.m. traffic jam in O Town and heard it on the cbc radio news: cyclist, 28, dead. run over by a transport. died in hospital.

i gave that a think tonight as i rolled right past that scene from 2 weeks ago. brutal. but then there are scenes of brutality everywhere you look, or so it seems, these days, over there in O Town. and this virus crap has everyone so upside backwards. or almost everyone. every now and again i come across some mighty cool cats!

a day at the office

Tuesday afternoon we had to shoot a little sequence: artist to artist! i had no idea what the plan was, the agenda, or brew ha ha, was. so i said to the other artist: let’s just wing it. i think we nailed it on the first take. the film crew said we should do another but the artist i was with said nope! it’s fine! (when it comes to THIS kind of show bizz… i like to just go get it. wham!)(maybe we can share the clip here whenever it’s ready)

cool

it was fun to chat with a First Nations artist who has ten years on me. i knew all the names but have never met some of those folks like: Norval Morrisseau. Jack Pollock. etc. the artist i was yakking with on Tuesday had some very interesting tales, up close style stuff you don’t get to read in the history books or the newspapers. we both agreed that what the younger Indigenous artists are doing, like the gig in the above photo, is pretty slick!

we also agreed that WOW! time flies! and the counting of the many blessings, daily, is something worth going after. (i didn’t tell him about that solid GOLD horse shoe i have stowed… )

the swanky 9th as seen from the Markville Mall parking lot

and i sure didn’t tell anyone about that dude i saw who went and got himself run over by a transport on highway 7 just 2 short weeks ago… i’m up here now, after midnight, thinking about it!

but we’re here on business. and i hope it goes alright.

back in the good old days when we could actually visit the schools!

i know this virus crap has everything going Planet of the Apes (Charlton Heston 1968 version) but there is still ROOM for making art presentations and reaching out in community service and i am so thankful for that! some folks have the goods and they have to be delivered.

M.H. Collection

this one has been selected! the details aren’t in but when i see it on the streets, i’ll be sure to post some photos of, right here!

Moose Nahmiwan, acrylic on canvas board, 16×20 inches. Painted on the Range in March 2015

i was one of the lucky ones, so far: so good. we’ll keep our fingers crossed and pray that GOLDEN horse shoe doesn’t ever come loose!

while all this is happening we won’t forget that this is happening too!

Providence Bay, Manitoulin Island, August 2020

i walked on the sands at Providence Bay last August, an early morning stroll and gosh… what true love.

Thanksgiving Weekend

Saturday afternoon on the Range

our prayers were answered in the blue skies department! we had them on Saturday and wow! the light and space out here, a total 180 from the wilds we were in the day before. we were also blessed, i was, with my two sisters visiting on Saturday afternoon! i had the both of them sitting around my table as i prepared the turkey and the stuffing (a little too much salt in that stuffing boy… ). i have not seen my two sisters together in my kitchen since i don’t know when.

The skies were filled with eagle song

we counted 5 bald eagles sailing up and down the river on Saturday and they were back on Sunday, hooting and hollering up and down by the waterfall. what music they make! and what a show they put on, two of them flying together in what looked like a dance. they’re here again this morning plus 2 huge bluejays going to work on the new bird feeder.

Eagles on Sunday afternoon!

they were landing in the trees out front. we had the binoculars, 3 pairs of them, bird watching Tehkummah style when suddenly we had the idea about getting the super Celestron NexStar telescope that we normally use to view Saturn, pointing out the sliding glass doors. Jasmine Moon had the bright idea of putting her cell phone camera up to the eyepiece and boom! we’re up close and personal with those birds! here is one i snapped using my little phone. with that big telescope we could see the eyes of the eagle and the sun gleaming off them! what a show! the view through the telescope was crystal clear, unlike this photo.

walking the green and blue: the trail along side the river on Saturday afternoon-what fabulous memories to go with! the fun folks we’ve had walking up and down there over the past ten years. i can never walk down that trail without thinking of them. on this day i was thinking about a gal and the afternoon of July 28th. what a beauty it was and what fun we had down there at the waterfall. at the time i was day 4 into the vacation and working on a full body tan! it worked out alright!

Autumn on the Range

some local boys came by and mowed the hay off the field this year and the truth is i kind of like seeing it mowed. i must say the autumn fragrance out there: a thing of beauty.

Michelle’s medicine wheel and ceremonial grounds.

we haven’t had the time to give it the attention it needs. michelle’s healing grounds have, well. we’re not home to work it like we want but yesterday we mowed down the weeds and exposed the path ways. about an hour later those eagles arrived and it seemed to us they were looking at it.

An Autumn afternoon on the Range

the gals had to make a run to town and left me here alone for a couple of hours, holy mackinaw lads it was a gigantic open space for just one person. once again, memory lane! i was reminded of my September mornings just 5 short years ago, just after Labour Day, when my Jasmine Moon moved away to attend high school in O Town. her mom went with for that first week and i stayed behind. the school bus rolled up to our driveway, stopped and opened the door. i waved them on. and they rolled on and never came back. shudders… all of everything that was a father and his daughter in childhood seemed to sail away at that very moment. brutal!

but i turned it around by thinking about Indian Summer 2017. 6 weeks in paradise, smoking heat, blue skies, the river blasting, canvas and paint at the ready, fine wines, alien abductions.

Sunday evening on the Range

we were lucky! the sun was high and bright, the climes quite pleasant, good food, fun vins, the eagles, wow. what a weekend. and what a gang, thank you for coming over!

but it’s Monday morning. everyone is gathering their gear and we’re on the road soon. 8 hours worth at the least, there is no short version of the drive we’re going to make.

thank goodness i had the camera phone going and we shot up some videos. we put those on the twinravens2000 youtube channel they’re solid gold come 9 a.m. at the office in a land far away.

Back home, on the Range

it’s 3 a.m. and we’re home! gosh it is freakishly warm out there for 3 a.m., 17 C. there is a half moon in the east and the sky is filled with stars. no sirens. no unpleasant sounds… nothing but the great wide open.

i’m hoping my maple tree down by the river looks like this come day light!

Thanksgiving at the River

tomorrow is supposed to be a balmy 16 C and sunny! Thanksgiving weekend on the range, definitely worth the 8 or 9 hour drive to get here! what peace! and i can hear the river…

The Swanky 9th, Vol. 2

before sunrise on Sunday, October 4th: up here in the cosy climes, looking out at highway 7 and the town of Markham, lights in every direction, and time on our hands! you see all of our autumn and xmas art show and sales opportunities we had booked ages ago, have been cancelled! NO ART SHOWS since my last gig back on March 7th: The York University Pow wow.

Me and What’s his name…

also cancelled: my trip back to Scotland! me and Joe were called up and we were ready for that trip! i haven’t seen Joe since i don’t know when, and i haven’t seen this guy, not sure what his name is, since when we were over there.

4 weeks at the office, way back in, was it June 2018? ah well… we’ll get back to the MacKays dining room and The Coach House one of these days.

so yes. no art gigs. no movie gigs. no trips to the NGC. and five will get you ten says all the Halloween parties will be cancelled…

Halloween 2019: we always did the parties and i was glad there were so many swinging bashes to go to!

don’t judge me till you’ve walked a mile in my shoes… (Ha! a darling friend of mine said she couldn’t get 10 steps in those!)(Halloween 2019)

Anishnabe Woodland style Moose, by anishnabe artist Mark Seabrook. 36×48 inches, sharpie marker on shipping grade cardboard. drawn on September 30, 2020. i’m still doing art classes but ever since March 13th we’ve been doing them “virtually”, online with Facebook and Youtube. here is the result of class number 11: What can be done in 25 minutes using Sharpie Markers, cardboard and 36×48 inches!

let me tell you that a virtual classroom is far and away from the heavy duty magic that goes into a “live performance”! (my art classes are a bit of a wild and crazy extravaganza!)

from the pages of Book 8: Art Journals and Found Poetry. in class 12 we covered the repurposed books and black out poetry/art journaling adventure. i heard back from a few participants! they asked: how can you do that to a book?!!! my answer is: these are repurposed books from the goodwill, next stop for these books is the landfill! so we’re doing our families a favour by creating something that is going to last for 50 or 60 years.

(when we get the Hard Cover version of SUN INFINITY MOON i’ll try some black out/found poetry and art journaling with that book of HORROR!)

Art Journals and Found Poetry using repurposed books.
The Clone Trees, Found Poetry, Book 3

and so we’re NOT gearing up for a trip downtown this morning to some swanky venue, art show and sales op., but instead pondering a walk around the pond over there at Toogood, Unionville. and this afternoon we’re taking the back roads from Markham back to O Town and we won’t be in a rush.

3rd Gear

the gear box has 5 of them but out here on a Sunday morning all you need is 3. 40 km/h, and no particular place to go. that is the outback in Tehkummah on a Sunday morning drive: beautiful! Labour Day weekend, sunny and WOW! so glad i made the trip on Friday night.

sunrise on Saturday morning: on the range and in PEACE! it is a long drive, 8 hours at the very least, but seeing this makes it.

wow! what a way to start a new day! every window out here has a beautiful view but at sunrise those big sliding glass doors, Shell sure had a grand idea!

Tehkummah skies on Saturday, September 5th. wow! what a breath taking scene.

it did rain for about 2 minutes! a sun shower and gosh those rain drops were cold! those August rains are in the past.

the scene on 15th sideroad, north of 2nd concession, one of my favourite roads to drive. saw this and had to pull over!

when i got back to the range, from my little drive around the neighbourhood i did some cloud watching on the new front deck and saw these beauties sailing by, going east from west.

imagine having nothing better to do than watch the clouds go by on a Saturday afternoon, in the last weekend of summer!

that is the kind of day it was on Saturday, a real beauty! and i had the whole thing to myself. mind you, some company would have been nice.

sunset on the range, what a place of PEACE! wow. all of it was everything i imagined! i am so thankful!

the FINISHED deck! she’s ready for entertaining! that beauty is enormous, over 300 square feet out there! wow! never mind any social distancing and face mask crap out here!

that bat house is the first thing to go when i get back here for an extended period of time. i don’t want that thing getting in the way of my billion dollar view. and out there on the front deck at sundown, there is a billion dollar view in every direction. so we have a lot to be thankful for.

but it is Sunday, Labour Day weekend, and we have fun things in the hopper, so let’s quit with the typing and start with the fun!

3:45 a.m.

UE and Percy, just as UE was moving in.

arrived on the range at 3:30 a.m., expecting to see my old buddy Percy, the Black Cat, either on the outside of the sliding doors wanting in, or on the inside wanting out! arrived this morning though and nothing.

he’s been reported missing in action. and this is two weeks now.

Good Old Percy

that’s him back in the old days, at least 5 Novembers ago. that Black Cat was the first one to move into the Range, way back on May Long Weekend, 2010.

Black Cat on a Winter Night, acrylic on canvas, 10×10″

good old Percy and Spooky are the subjects of many paintings and 2 children stories i have yet to illustrate.

acrylic on canvas board, 12×16″

so it is 4:30 a.m. and he’s not around. i let him out on August 16th, Sunday morning, after the rain. i let them all out at the same time. and i didn’t see which way Percy was going. it was nothing unusual to let them all go like that.

little did i know that was the last time we were ever going to see him.

Back in the City

somewhere in O Town

after driving all night i arrived in O Town some what bright eyed and bushy tailed, ready to plunge. gosh it was a bluesy and spooky scene loading up and going down that driveway that takes me out of the magic that is the range, to the highway and the wild world beyond. before i left the range i shot a bunch of videos with a narrative and i have yet to look at those but maybe one day they’ll be on the youtube channel. it was a video journal: house was empty, no one around. no sounds. just me going down memory lane in each room, bar the squeal.

somewhere in O Town

and so having spent 23 days in paradise, on the mighty blue and green, in the river, in with great company and amusing conversations, old time and old style board games it was BOOM! a complete 180! not only in the sights and sounds department but in the “smells” department as well…

somewhere in O Town

the brutal part about coming back was no Jasmine Moon! she was still out there having a good time, doing that Wild Joe thing, living the good life and well she should at the ripe old age of sweet seventeen. but let me tell you that walk on Monday morning, August 17th, tornado warnings too, Covid crap on every street corner, the spooks, masks, noise, exhaust, the police, lost souls, lost soles, empty cans, broken glass, torched rubbers and plastics, mangled automobiles rumbling down back streets, rats, lost birds, sick dogs on leashes, signs everywhere telling you don’t do this etc., people actually bending down to pick up poop…

somewhere in O Town

there are stories to be told, on every street corner in this town and judging by the appearance of the storytellers, some real doozies! some folks might be fibbing but you never can tell around here.

sunrise as seen from the swanky 9th, Aug. 22

it was back in the limo at two minutes to midnight, August 21, and away to the cosy climes and good food at the swanky 9th. made the all night drive down the 416 to the 401 to here with many stops along the way to hear those summer night sounds, which will soon be gone till next year! i was planning on highway 7, a drive through the country, but folks on this end questioned the safety of a night drive through the wilds, me with my reputation intact and wild night drive stories, none of which is me lying.

and so we made it and here we are in a very swanky room up where there is a view! and the host is someone too, with some pretty amazing stories, all of which are true!

art journals and repurposed books

Inspired by the great Norval Morrisseau and his piece, Water Spirit, 1972, this is my version of, with the twinravens actual applied, in book 6, art journals and found poetry in repurposed books. for more info and a demo, visit my youtube channel! i finished book 5 a few weeks ago and gosh it is a story to tell! i can’t guarantee you those are true stories but i can that they are some stories!

we pulled this idea out and introduced it to some folks i’ve known for 20 years. or thought i’d known! i had no idea they were visual artists! i gave them the basics in the how to’s and let them run with it, this was up on the Range, Day 4 in paradise, on one of those smoking hot summer nights. well she took the idea and turned it into something very slick looking, completing a dozen pages while she was with us. truth is i was amazed with what i saw. you see this art making project: art journals and found poetry using repurposed books, is solid gold real estate if you’re willing to follow through. book 5 took me from December 28th last year to July something, and yes folks it really is a one of a kind work of art filled with some pretty sexy poems! but like i said in the youtube videos: these books take time to complete! and you have to stay with them! in the end you’ll have an amazing book of art which could be mighty telling somewhere down the road a year or two.

Version 2

i want to run this one again as a reminder! yes: we are nearly finished with the jungle edits in version one. once in the clear we’re going to run version 2 and see what can be done! having recently read through it nose to nose: I quite enjoyed it, even after a few hundred thousand reads in the creation process. i say that as i know some folks did NOT enjoy it! then one day in the city, i was out there in the thick of it, with Q, CBC playing and Neil Young was giving an interview and said this:

miigwetch NY!

and so yes: many thanks and a big chi miigwetch to NY for saying such things at that point in time, when i was up to my elbows in a lot of wild things of wonder, novel too!

GO!

Summer Vacation (4)

oh boy… here we are, on Sunday morning, August 16th. today is the day we have to saddle up and go back to the city… yikes. but first we must wait for the car! on Thursday the alternator went in Shell’s Buick and the good folks at the local garage said the best they could do was this Wednesday. so we’re down to one car! and Shell had some work bizz in O Town so she left good and early on Friday morning and has been gone ever since-leaving me out here completely alone AND car less! no car in the drive! i had to walk the 2 miles up to the general store on Friday afternoon, no biggie, to get my refreshments and folks its been a long time since this lad walked like that! it was a wonderful stroll, heat blazing down, no traffic, just me, the open back road and my wild imagination. so no car. day 3. i had plans for my Saturday/Sunday but nope!

River scenes I want to remember!

out of the three weeks here we had every day a blaze of sunshine except 2 and this morning. so my holiday prayers were answered! i wanted some serious bikini time and i got it!

Tent city on the front lawn!

the gang made some nice work of it-turning the front lawn into a community! the days were gosh darn boiling hot and the nights were darn right cool! truth is its always the blues seeing the folks roll up their gear and pack it away, leaving empty spaces behind.

One of those August mornings I dream about!

some mornings its nice to walk the grounds around the crib, other mornings its nice to take a drive around the backroads out here. there is always something to see when you’re moving real slow!

On the 15th Sideroad

riding around one morning i saw this! what a scene! and what peace and quiet in every direction! exactly what i wanted!

An afternoon on the range

oh my goodness there are wonderful scenes in every direction out here! and so wonderful to share them!

limited the computer time to a half hour a day

the view at dinner time: looking east over the open range and what a view! no need for any computer time with something like that going on out there!

sunrise after the meteor shower

some of those August nights featured the best show in town-a meteor shower and we sat on the new front deck and enjoyed the show. remember: no light pollution or noise pollution out here! of course the sunrise out here is also quite a show!

the west lawn

no time this year to mow that section but what we ended up with was quite colourful and something worth looking at! i’ve got an oak tree out there that is digging in!

Friday morning alone

and so she took the car and left me completely alone out here. our summer visitors are gone. just one man alone in paradise. i wanted to drive out and see some of the local art galleries on the island but with no wheels: no dice!

the green and blue at 2 in the afternoon

the sun was blazing on Friday, peace in every direction, but no voices! no conversation. that is when i started thinking about maybe hoofing it the 2 miles up to the local to grab me a splash!

on the road home, suitcase in my hand

took 50 minutes to walk up there, a quick gab with the ladies, turned it around and started walking back, suitcase filled with drinkables, and found this place. now i drive through here all the time, that’s 2nd concession going east/west, but i’ve never walked it! not out by this stretch. and so i cracked open that suitcase, found me a rock on the shady side of the street, and cracked open one of my refreshments and watched this show for a good hour! no traffic!

August afternoon on the range

i’d like to think i maxed it out. i mean yes i didn’t cover all the bases, art galleries included, and missed visiting with folks i said i would get to. but i did get my time in with the land, the river and the sky. and i needed to see that. to smell it! to hear it! to feel it under my bare feet! and of course to get myself that full body tan. so that part of the mission is accomplished.

if all goes well i hope to get back for Labour Day weekend. if all goes well we can cover those missed bases. but who knows, that is a long way off, looking at the calendar right now.

well i drove all night to get over here, way back on July 24/25th and it looks like i’ll be driving all night to get back. i sure hope we have light duty tomorrow morning after 9.