Art Battle

Just participated in my fourth Art Battle, this time in Toronto at the Great Hall. It is 100% pure excitement just to watch and even more so to participate. I have been lucky so far to always reach the final round, keep your fingers crossed that I win it sometime soon!

Have to thank the Art Battle team (and founders) for providing artists with such a great opportunity to push ourselves to higher levels, share our work (and yes even sell!!) as well as get some great exposure. If you haven’t attended a battle yet check out their Facebook page or Website to find an event near you, you will not regret it!

 

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Boxes and Banners by Mississauga Arts Council

I have always admired the street art that adorns Toronto so I was overjoyed when the Mississauga Arts Council started their Boxes and Banners Project to beautify (artify!) Mississauga streets. I am humbled to be one of the lucky artists who painted a Bell box.

Here is my box’s transformation!

It was unveiled amidst a bit of fanfare with the Mississauga Arts Council and some of its board members, the local Councillor and singer Arlene Paculan to serenade us. There was ice cream for everyone who attended the unveiling, and yes it was one hot day!

I Always Feel Like Somebody’s Watching Me

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Ever feel like you were being watched? Yeah me too sometimes. Courtesy of Middle Child, Twin 1 and Twin 2.

Art Exhibit

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So I got this in the first week of January. A really nice way to start the year! You can see my piece here : All Women Art Exhibition

In between the art nights that I am doing I hope to put in some more time for exhibitions. Had an art night yesterday, and the paintings all turned out awesome ( so proud of my participants! You all did an incredible job!) Check out the paintings…

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CN Tower and a summer sunset.

Sketchbook

I have been trying to keep up with my sketch book along with the paint nights, mornings and afternoons. Yes I did a paint breakfast as well as the paint lunches and dinners!

My participants have given me motivating feedback, and I am happy that painting has proven to be such a fun and  at the same time stress relieving activity for them as well as for me. I am having one last event on the 30th of December. I hadn’t planned on doing any more before January 2016, but there were so many requests for one last “hurrah” before next year 🙂

With all the planning, painting and other stuff  that goes into organizing these paint events I have less time to practice in my sketchbook. But I choose simple little drawings that I can manage while watching Dr.Who with my girls. So here’s a peek at my sketchbook…

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and this last one I started yesterday ….

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I hope to finish this one tonight. I also have some paintings I am working on for a silent auction for charity…busy !!!

SL-Week 15: Communication

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Solitude, best time for communication with As-Samad, the Eternally Besought.

 

I am all wrapped up in artsy events these days and can’t find the time to write on my blog. So I thought this photo challenge might be fun! Do check out this website, Silvain Landry,  for awesome photos!

Weekly Photo Challange: Happy Place

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This says it all. Happy Place.

Let’s Paint This!

After the art exhibit at MuslimFest this summer, I had all sorts of artsy ideas bouncing around my head. So I decided to bring some art to my community. It turns out painting is a great way to unwind!

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Sunsets.

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Food!

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Artsy ladies.

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I painted one in the morning and then one in the evening as I instructed.

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Le finished masterpieces!

It turned out well for the first time, we had lots of fun. I would love your suggestions and tips to make it better though!

Autumn is Sneaking In

School opening again sort of means summer is over, even though it’s not and the weather is still awesome and there may be some more beach days. However the trees are being sneakily “Autumnized” with brilliantly painted leaves. School opening definitely means more time to write though and more time to “art”. I was up to some artsy stuff when I got the chance, kids joined in and we made some masterpieces together. I am trying out the photo real stuff, need lots of practice, but I love it.

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Did this scenery for someone.

Practised plenty in the sketchbook too…

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Would you like a jelly bean?

Waking up the Kids: Buy Me That!

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When I was a kid we didn’t have all day long TV programs for kids. We waited patiently for Saturday so we could watch cartoons. Kids can watch all day, everyday now. They get way too much television. With that they get way too many commercials. Commercials that convince them that their lives will be incomplete without a certain sugar laden breakfast cereal or incredibly awesome action figure with high tech capabilities that require an endless supply of batteries or ugly doll with big head, disproportionately small body and questionable attire.

When we were kids we were simply told “no”. No meant no and that was that. Or there were the few much envied kids in the class whose parents never said no and their lives were complete bliss. We could never reach that unattainable nirvana that they had. Parents that never said no.  But when you have your own kids you realize that it was the parents who had it harder than us. I do feel they could have made it easier for themselves though if they had sat us down and taught us how big companies count on the gullibility of the (dumb) consumer. If our parents had challenged us to be smarter than the advertising professionals I think we would have been more open to accepting “no I am not buying that for you”.  At least that is what I think now that I have to deal with my own kids.

I am a big fan of Neflix.  No commercials and there are shows that I have okayed for my kids to watch that I don’t have to worry about being age inappropriate. Like the incredibly dumbed down or incredibly crass, even bordering on lewd shows I see on regular channels. Of course sometimes they do watch YTV, so they do have exposure to the wonderful world of advertising and all the material wonders that can cause parents to go bankrupt.

I too just give the “no means no”, occasionally treats are allowed on birthdays and special occasions. But I didn’t want my kids to feel the way I did when my parents said no and I saw dozens of other kids with parents that said yes.  I felt like I was a poor immigrant, because something being too expensive and a waste of money was the (if any) excuse given. Yes I want my kids to be tough to face the world tomorrow but if there is an explanation I want to give it to them so they can understand the world around them.

I started telling them how big companies hire smart people to fool kids into buying things they don’t need. They fool kids into pestering parents to a point of madness and the parents finally give in. So these companies win the game all the time because they outsmart the kids. The kids aren’t smart enough to realize they are being duped. This reasoning was incredibly more effective than what we got as kids. My kids understood why they did not need everything they saw on commercials or everything their friends had.

Today I took this to an even higher level. I searched for videos on YouTube that explained advertising tricks. I was once watching a documentary on the music industry and my girls sat down with me. I thought they would run away bored after a few minutes, they didn’t. They absorbed it with interest and now discuss what songs are not worth listening to and which are, they recognize the absurdity that some singers indulge in and understand how this is demeaning and something that should not be respected or idolized.

Anyways I was not expecting to find videos that were actually made for kids about the trap of commercials. But I found a series of them. They were really good, the girls were so engaged they couldn’t stop discussing and asking questions. It kind of did all the work for me, they started talking about commercials they saw and how they no longer wanted that product now that they realized how they were being fooled into wanting to buy things they didn’t need.

Society is becoming one big “I want this-I need this-I have to have this-look at this latest thing that I bought and have thus achieved a level of superiority” self-absorbed mess. It is our duty to make sure we are able to reverse this by teaching our kids to read between the lines, question things and make their own informed decisions rather than have the mainstream media do it for them.  We need to make sure our kids are wide awake on all levels. The thing is it is easier to keep them awake by teaching them at a young age than it is to wake them up when they are older.