Lingering evening

Lingering evening (10″x 8″ oil on raised panel)

Wow – what a long beautiful summer evening that was! I painted this en plein air from the deck of our sailboat just a couple of days off the solstice. I thought I would get some wonderful sunset colours but I would have had to wait longer than I felt like. Anyway, the subtle tones are lovely too, I think.

Tom wrote a haiku with an appropriately Zen feeling for this one!

ten thousand years hence
this long summer evening light
will still be here now

image (c) 2020 Hilary Farmer
poem (c) 2020 TJ Radcliffe

Evening crossing …oil painting

Evening crossing (12″ x 12″)

Based on a view from the ferry between Vancouver and Victoria. At that time in the evening, the islands you pass look dark and mysterious. The strait was smooth, reflecting the dying light as it leaked through the clouds …a moment of transition in space and time.

Tom’s extremely quirky poem …well just read it!

The sea lies calm between the rocky shores
capturing the sun’s last golden rays:
bright Day is ending, “Leave them wanting more”
she whispers as she slips away, off stage
to take off makeup, rest and smoke a fag,
while gossiping with Dawn and watching Dusk
who entertains the punters in her rags
of scattered cloud and twilight ’til she’s thrust
into the wings by Night’s commanding step
onto the boards, her retinue of stars
all keeping time until the moon has crept
up through the trap to shine, so high and far.
Day stubs her smoke and goes off to her bed
To dream of Dawn and inhibitions shed.

image (c) 2018 Hilary Farmer
poem (c) 2018 TJ Radcliffe

The look of my blog will be changing soon! I am updating it in preparation for coordinating with my NEW WEBSITE! I am super excited that it’s almost ready to launch. There will be a post soon with a link.

summer memory …oil painting

summer memory (9×12)

While “enjoying” the cold and dark and damp, something that keeps me going is the memory of long summer days …and especially those spent on the water. What a peaceful joy that can be!

I think Tom agrees!

safe within the bay’s deep arms
sheltered from the storms and harms
of weather wild and rough deep seas
crashing somewhere to the lee
against the shores of distant isles
separated by the miles
of empty ocean, scudding wastes
far from here, this sheltered place
where there’s time for pause and rest
until again the sea’s behest
beckons us to raise our sails
and ride the waves in summer gales

image (c) 2018 Hilary Farmer
poem (c) 2018 TJ Radcliffe

China trip – bye bye Beijing and west coast interlude

quiet Beijing hutong morning
quiet Beijing hutong morning

Before flying back to Canada, I had a few days in Beijing staying in a lovely small courtyard hotel in the Drum and Bell district again. Because of a strong rain the night before, the air was actually quite pleasant and the sky was blue that morning!

Beijing rush hour hutong style
Beijing rush hour hutong style

The hutongs (the traditional alleys of Beijing) have their own busy-ness but it is not like the regular traffic jams of the larger streets. Everything is at a smaller scale – even the vehicles.

Vancouver reflections on the way out of harour
Vancouver reflections on the way out of harbour

…and after a flight of 12 hours and one night’s sleep, the seemingly surreal beauty of Vancouver, British Columbia as we cruised slowly out of the harbour. (It is great to have a friend with a boat!)

feeling fine
feeling fine

Although the winds were too light at this point to actually sail, the day was beautiful and enjoying the scenery from the shade cast by the sail cover was just about perfect… the word “awesome” got slightly but justifiably overused during these few days 🙂

sunset in the Gulf Islands
sunset in the Gulf Islands

Sunset the first evening after managing to prepare a pretty delicious meal in the galley – or maybe sailing makes you hungry 😉

view from hiking trail
view from hiking trail

Pirates Cove Marine Provincial Park had some nice hiking around and through the point of an island.


Yay! Wildlife!!

sculpted landscape
sculpted landscape

Fantastical rock forms…

tidal pool
tidal pool

Fascinating tidal pools… the very first one I saw had the most diverse inhabitants.

view from shore
view from shore

There she is, still afloat!

Nanaimo Harbour
Nanaimo Harbour

A beautiful day in Nanaimo…

back to Vancouver
back to Vancouver

Strong winds made for a quick trip back to Vancouver and sadly the end of an amazing trip.

photos (cc) 2013 Hilary Farmer

except #4 (c) 2013 TJ Radcliffe