Bella Bones was in the House!

Art One-Oh-One at Oliver Parks and Rec, Saturday morns at 11 welcomed its favourite model and her handler Dancer Andrea Gunnlagson Furlan. IMG_8434Everyone looked, thought carefully about what they were going to draw, then drew details of Bella in their sketchbooks.IMG_8440Andrea you assistant needs a sandwhich! Love this pose!IMG_8439The Artists were all very quiet and concentrating on their large sketches on newsprint.IMG_8442Why are Bella and Andrea lying down on the job?IMG_3734Difficult pose but it really shows the spin in action. It is also more difficult with pen and ink! IMG_3738We cover a lot in class. This is a very advanced drawing class for this level and everyone did great. I throw them into the deep end and let them pencil themselves out. This week I’ll throw them the life line. Now that they know the challenges, I’ll give them tips to help with their drawings.IMG_8446Andrea you and Bella are the best!! Thank you!

Art One-Oh-One Saturday’s at 11:00. Oliver Parks and Rec.

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A Moon Gate Opens

Welcome to the new home of

I opened a MoonGate and nailed 2 doors shut!

After months of packing and packing and renos and renos and MOVING and more renos I finally have a space to grow in.

I feel like I spent 2 and a half years rotting!

Downsizing is not fun when you have 10,500 lbs of STUFF!

And really did the movers have to tell me that weight??

I did think I was moving into a smaller place however when I had the floor put in, gave up the white cork for a light grey marmoleum . . budget . .  I realized that my little trailer with the addition is only 25 square feet smaller.

I moved into a trailer, it has wheels and a hitch, so if I feel like it . . NOT . . I could move it!

Not interested in that amount of work! And I don’t think my little bucket of bolts, I call her the Lady Mac, could handle the stress on the metal.

So now that I have a new place for my pencils and crayons and I do look forward to more art!

After all I still haven’t created my best work yet!

Welcome and enjoy! What is next . . . time will tell!

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The Silence of the Fish

Hell froze over! I left the valley!

I don’t like to travel anymore and where was I?

On the Road . . . again! But with just one little camera and not even a flash!

Dianne waved the carrot of fashion, go-fast boats and a visit with a special friend in front of my nose and poof . . there we were in Victoria.

I met a fabulous crew spearheaded by Catherine Larose and Matt Laprairie, a great bunch of photogs, loved watching them shoot and a delightful, brilliant group of young women — designers, models, hair and make-up with other jobs like nurse, physician and author.

This was my retirement party . . . I actually sat back and watched more than I thought “got to get that shot”.

These days I like to take pictures of my cat, my paintings, horses, praying mantises  and my irises . . . and what ever else tickles MY fancy!

At one point I was sitting in the warmth of  “The Assanté” a 150 Ft yacht, rough . . . looking at the 5 photogs on deck battling not nice wind conditions and thinking I don’t need to get that photo. The photo of the dress all blown around was taken from the deck. That was as uncomfortable as I got.

. . . . and I knew with their skills and big guns their photos would be fabulous . . . .  and they better prove me right!

I like to tell a story with my camera!

This is the story of Dianne Gibson presenting her Art Piece, created from ocean plastic, the dress Silence of the Fish and two garments from her ready to wear line, Off the Cuts at the Opening Of the Victoria International Marina.

Dianne spent months designing and creating the Silence of the Fish.

The plastic for the corset arrived from Ocean’s Legacy. It was washed but was looking a bit scary. Dianne made a pattern with her model Crystal’s measurements, they had not met yet, cut the pieces out . . plastic does not cut easy!  Sewed in the boning, fasteners, set grommets with the gills at the back, tackled the lacing of the neck corset to the body corset. Lots of work and construction skills.

For the skirt, Dianne built a white cage crinoline. Layered real ocean black fish netting,  the same netting dolphins and turtles get caught in.

The icing on the dress was a white plastic train with black ruffle that billowed in the wind, embellished with plastic roses arranged in the shape of the maple leaf . . .  after all it was Canada Day!

Brilliant! Brilliant! Is all I can say!

Dianne’s ready to wear line . . .  “Off the Cuts” was elegant, easy to wear and made from fabric that was headed to the landfills. You catch a glimpse of Pauline Yee and Stephanie Coughlan wearing the garments laughing with Dianne.

The day after, we were shooting at a castle, model Everline Aboke was available for an unscheduled  garment!

Dianne was ready! She had brought some of her extra corsets and with the netting from Oceans Legacy, the old black caged crinoline, she put together the ensemble you see in front of the castle.

With the netting from the sea, Everline added to the look by wrapping it around her head. A powerful thought!

We both felt very short that day. . .  I do hope we get a photo of us dressing Everline!

To sum this up, all of this work, skill, nerves and patience was for a 6 minute runway walk.

In that 6 minutes The Silence of the Fish spoke volumes!

Congratulations Dianne!

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We’re Back!

The adventures of Dianne and Leza . . . With all the challenges, all the pressure and the logistical chaos of a fashion show, our first road trip together was great fun!

I learned three things on this trip. 

One – how to take a selfie and send it to Facebook.

How to use Siri as a timer! 

Really . . .  my the wonders of modern technology! 

And thirdly that modern technology is one of the big problems. 

Modern technology is a major factor contributing to the poor health of our planet.

What has happened to all the plastics that we have been throwing into the ocean? 

I remember a Donahue Show in the 80’s about barges taking New York garbage into the ocean and dumping it!

Plastic today goes to the same place the very first plastic bag that was ever made went. 

Forever land!

These plastics are breaking down to small pieces, but not breaking down to an environmentally safe  form. The micro plastic is being covered by plankton, the fish in the oceans are eating the plankton . . . think about the food chain. Imagine feeding your pet a diet of plastic, hidden in their food? 

Next time I enjoy a fish dinner, I will wonder if that fish has consumed plastic and now am I dinning on micro plastics!

Photo by Lorraine NygaardDianne Gibson’s dress, Silence of the Fish, designed from recycle ocean plastic supplied by The Ocean’s Legacy Foundation for the fashion show is a beautiful creative way to bring awareness to what we have done to our Oceans!

Opened my eyes!

Now how do we fix it?

Let me see what am I willing to give up?

My camera? Made from plastics! NOT

My fav spatula, a plastic . . . Maybe.

My car, lots of plastic there, not to mention the whole fossil fuel thing . .

Nope not one of those things.

However, I have little nylon bags . . . yup . . . a type of plastic, I have put my veggies and fruits into for years. I bought them at the old Buy-low. So how long is that?

If I consider a plastic bag for onions, potatoes, tomatoes and strawberries per week, I   estimate in a year I have not used at least 220 plastic fruit and veggie bags.

It is a wee start!

Photo by Lorraine NygaardPhoto by Lorraine Nygaard

Thank you Lorraine Nygaard. Our very gracious hostess.


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24 hours to go!

So we made it without a glitch . . not!

First stop Cherries . . . tasty cherries in Cawston . . remember this town.

Wonderful easy, no traffic, drive to Gastown where we stayed with my neighbour the amazing Tania, you might remember her when she surprised us on International Men’s Day!

Dianne and I had a wonderful night she hot tubbed on the roof, I wondered around the old hood. 28 Powell street looks the same. I do like the way they have added lights, glass and metal window and door treatments to the old brick and mortar buildings. Beautiful.

I felt invigorated on Hastings and Carrol at 10pm. I love being in the middle of the city!

Wondered into the gorgeous restaurant PiDGiN owned by the amazing young man Brandon Grossutti. When Brandon was younger he use to help me with my book cover unveilings. Will always love him to bits!

Okay so it is Saturday morn!

Mini repacked – dress – check, camera – check wallet . . . wallet . . . WALLET!@#$$$$#@!

This is not good . . back track the only place I took it out was . . . . Cherries in Cawston!@#$#@!

Swear word . . . .

Solution – phone friend in Cawston and try to describe fruit stand while in a panic.

30 min later my bright pink wallet is found!

Great  . . but I am here in the big city with no money to SHOP!! A girl has got to shop! Swear word again . . .

That challenge is over now onto the ferry! Ummm on to the ferry . . . at the ticket gate the Mini starts to hiccup, ticket girl says it does not sound good.

4 Palms are sweating at this time

We are advised to call guy in vest if we get into trouble . . .

Hell no we are getting on that ferry. We both exhale on the downhill ramp as we coasted onto the ferry!

Lovely trip across the water!

Okay now to get off the ferry . . all is well till we hit the snail pace ferry traffic to Victoria.

Two or three pull out of traffic and finally a gas station . . closed!

Swear word!

So I get out the manual reading what we should do, Dianne is under the hood doing what should be done and voila car works. All we are going to say on that!

Finally we are at Lorraine’s. Our friend from design school! She was rehearsing  for her gig last night!

We tried to fit 40 years of adventures into one glass of wine. So much fun so many stories . . . . to be continued!

Dinner time.

Dianne is hanging with relatives and Cousin says we should go to Spinikers. Okay were new in town and away we go.

Just so happens it has a view of the Victoria International Marina, the runway for Dianne’s dress .

She can’t stop looking at it. I can see her wheels turning.

Okay now we are really excited!

But wait!

One more amazing story!

I am looking at the beautiful woman intently listening to her friend. We don’t see that kind of listening very often.

Dianne looks at this lovely woman she is taking to . . .

Well . .

Turns out we are seated next to Catherine Larose, Natural Talent Alliance, whose idea this all is and  Chloé Dubois from Ocean Legacy a global non-profit organization dedicated to ending plastic pollution.

And now it is Sunday morning!

Time to rock and roll!


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Estimated Time of Departure

Friday Morning!

Not too too early I hope!

IMG_6467Bling Bag is all ready!

Now to prepare the picnic basket . . . need a visit to our fav wineries!

IMG_6471What is it? Where will it be on the dress? Full foto later!

IMG_6464Take a box of gross ocean plastic, washed and add one brilliant corsetiere . . .

IMG_6482Dianne has shut the door at Station Street. Now check out the window she has opened. Fabulous view!

Nothing will stop this designer form doing her part to bring awareness to the tragedy of plastics in the Ocean’s.



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Best Friends Take a Road Trip!

Victoria, BC!

Here we go!

Dianne Gibson has been chosen as one of 10 designers, globally, for the fashion show supporting Future Oceans and The Ocean Legacy Foundation!

Dianne has two awesome kids and three wonderful little grandsons! She spent all her working career designing fashions and costumes.

My fav is the dress out of toilet paper . . another out of newspaper and there is the one out of magazine pages . . I can’t wait to see what she is up too!

Oceans Legacy sent Dianne a box of really scary ocean plastics. She took the box and washed it all . . . like really gross!!!

And the results . . . well Stay tuned.

We’re loading up the mini and away we go!


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Outdoor Girl Friend

Version 2Has a brand new hat!

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On Vacation!

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Grandmothers for Africa Spring Bling

IMG_4693 Grandmothers for Africa Spring Bling for Africa Spring Bling held Friday, April 26th at Medici’s.  Bedding plants outside sold very quickly as did the huge selection of used jewelry inside.  The event made well over $1000 to be forwarded to the Stephen Lewis Foundation to support companion grandmothers in Africa who are working way harder than we do to see their orphaned grandkids have a chance for both health and education.  Barack Obama said, “You may live in the world as it is, but you can still work to create the world as it should be.”  Grandmothers linked together between Canada and Africa know that all too well.

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