Staycation = Art-Vacation


Everyone’s idea of a  perfect staycation may differ, but whatever your idea is, I strongly suggest you try it some day. First off, no matter how you choose to spend it, it will be spent where you live and taking advantage of your local attractions, your home, your family and your favourite activity (mine is doing art in case you didn’t know!) I decided on the fly to take a mini staycation last week. For me, this means doing all the things I just mentioned above but adding to the mix staying in the present moment and taking a break from social media – which also means something I highly recommend – no screen time!!!

My staycation coincided with a very sunny and crispy week, weather-wise, so I spent a lot of quality time with my family and in my art studio being creative and admiring the gorgeous weather from the warmth of my house. I felt it would also be great timing to spend time preparing my upcoming vacation to Costa Rica with my best friend. Not only am I excited about going there but also because I know that I am due to return one week before the official start of spring and life will get busy as we move into gardening time! I also took the opportunity to start working on my biggest painting to date! A piece I am creating for a summer art show on Cortes Island. I have to say I am having fun working on a big projects but they’re labour and time intensive; it felt good to take the time to nail out my concept and get the bulk of it done. I look forward to sharing my new painting “Space” with you this Summer. Of course my family (2 mixed-breed Chihuahuas) love hanging out in the studio with me and watching the work grow!!! xoxo Laura

The Elephant Family

Meet the family! Beatrice, Hugo and their son Hugh. Their creation was inspired by our love for the largest land animal to roam our planet and as a sad reminder that they are on the brink of becoming endangered. Elephants are widely respected for forming close-knit matriarchal clans and their loyalty to each other and the humans they love – a point made famous in 2012 when elephants mourned the passing of Lawrence Anthony, known as the Elephant Whisperer, by holding a vigil around his house for two days. Their unique beauty, deep wisdom and kind hearts – along with their fierceness in defending their young and protecting their herds – are all reasons why we chose to portray an elephant family in this art project.

The Elephant Family

When Nola McPhail and I found out about summer’s annual members art show, at The Old School House Art Gallery on Cortes Island “The Colour of Our Muse”, we could not resist the opportunity of collaborating to contribute a piece. So we dedicated the month of June to creating The Elephant Family. Nola McPhail has been joining me for my Creative Sessions for the last year and we have explored many media and techniques together. When we chose to collaborate for this show, we opted to create a piece using many of the different media we have explored together as a way to push our creative boundaries, learn from each other, as well as have a lot of fun creating art together!

The Elephant Family art project consists of 3 elements:


Hugh, the son, is a collaboratively-created piece crafted from 3 recycled wood panels – each painted separately with acrylic paint and kroma crackle. His tail is made from braided wool sourced from Cortes Islander Joy Shipway. His face is made with polymer clay and finished with acrylic paint, kroma crackle, glass eyes, and false eye lashes; his trunk, tusks and ears are made from hand-sewn canvas.

The other two elements consist of individually-created art dolls – since those have been one of the strong focuses of their Creative Sessions.

Beatrice by  Nola McPhail

Nola McPhail opted to make the proud mother Beatrice using polymer clay, recycled textiles from an old skirt of hers, and false eyelashes; the piece was then mounted on a piece of yellow cedar.

Hugo by Laura Balducci

I created Hugo, the hard-working father, out of polymer clay, recycled textiles, wool, and a found hat; he is also mounted on yellow cedar.

We look forward to continuing our Creative Sessions starting in the next month or so and doing more work together.

The Cortes Island Museum

As many of you know by now, I was involved in The Curators’ Workshop for which the museum received a grant to support locals to get involved and learn about or further their knowledge of curating for museums, art shows in its myriad aspects: researching, hanging, grant writing and so much more. The workshop, led by well-known BC artist, author and historian Judith Williams, has been a wonderful experience from beginning to end! I learned so much, made some great new friends and I know the skills I learned will prove useful to me in the future. I would like to take a moment here to extend my gratitude to  the Cortes Island Museum for this opportunity.


I would also like to invite local and visiting folks to check out the show Refugee Cove  – Moving with the Tides. I am really proud of the work we did as the team of intern curators; a lot of time and effort went into the show by everyone involved and I am very happy about how it turned out.


the Other-Side : band mates

Meet Del Riveria

Del Riviera : old dog : new tricks : have bellows : will travel : on stage at 12 : never stopped : encompassing many disciplines and genres : favorite things : kittens and free improv

photo’s by David Molyneaux


IMG_1288   del-3del-6

Happy Yuletide

To all of my Family , Friends ,and Followers.

I send you all warm hugs and  bright times with whom ever and how ever you spend this time of the year.May 2016 bring you much joy and strength to continue creating the lives you wish.I am signing off  for a week with a new painting called “From Our House To Yours”.To spend some quality time with my loved ones ,the zoo and in the studio.Til soon xoxoxo Laura


Secret Weave

We started our last art class on Cortes Island drawing with Charcoal something I have not used much of but had a lot of fun with,mind you the  lady’s and I  always have fun.It was exciting to see what everyone came up with.Here is my new painting called Secret Weave. I would like to thank our teacher Lisa Gibbon’s for her on going encouragement and techniques she shares and all the lovely lady’s who join me weekly for there energy.



I had the pleasure of an art attack weekend and I well share the details of the  wind up of the weekend later this week.On Sunday the lady’s and I got an opportunity to take in an inspiring workshop by Meghan Hildebrand called Spontaneous @ Opus in Victoria .To say it bluntly we all left with new ideas , a free spirit ,a painting to work on and so much more.I share today my painting inspired in the workshop “Toast”. I feel like I made some new grounds to my art practice this year with all the exciting workshops I have had the chance to explore and I am very happy to start putting it all to work in Tone Studio as I get ready to buckle down and work.To see more of Meghan Hildebrand’s please visit her website


Roy Green

Roy Green is a master at his craft ,oozing with inspiration and freedom.I just recently had the pleasure to finally meet the man whose work has interested me for some time and got to share The Martin Bachelor  Gallery walls with him in August along side many other amazing artist’s.As you may have realized I love collecting art so I have add Roy Green now to the collection and am thrilled to share a few of his paintings and books with you all.Please check out his face book page follow and share.

Roy Green
Roy Green