Guest Blogger

Paddle Art Contest – Dawna VanSoelen

A SPIRITS’ JOURNEY

After returning home from the beautiful north our son delivered me a birthday gift in a Algonquin Outfitters bag. In it was a Tom Thomson art collection book. I was touched that he remembered that Tom Thomson was my favourite Canadian artist. He then left the room and returned with a Blank Paddle. “Mom it’s a blank paddle for a Tom Thomson Paddle Art contest” – Hosted by A.O.

At first I was reluctant to give it up, but then researched the contest in detail and understood what a great honour it would be to pay tribute to my inspiration of the arts. I’ll paint a paddle for Tom. I must say what Tom saw in nature is what I crave for as well. (The North Country -water, rocks, trees and skies)

While creating and painting  my paddle I felt as if I was being commissioned by Tom. I tried to come up with a composition that he may have been drawn to paint himself.

I visioned a cedar strip dove grey canoe nestled on a textured sandy shore with the view looking across the lake with several rocky outcrops, windswept pines and the Aurora Borealis reaching up to the heavens.

I used a shimmer of glow in the dark paint to illuminate the glow of the northern lights, lake and canoe. So when you turn out the lights…..

A Spirits Journey, remains.

The maple leaf on the paddle handle represents Canadian artist Tom Thomson 100 anniversary of his death in Algonquin Park.

Special note:
Thanks my dear Son for such a memorable birthday gift. May the charity auction proceeds keep giving back to our beautiful north land.

Dawna VanSoelen

See all the paddles in the auction here

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