As some of you know I’m Canadian. I’ve been living in the Algarve six months of the year for more than five years now.
This year has been special because our government leader asked us to come back to Canada because of the Corona Virus 19, so we did. It wasn’t in our plans to return before the end of April, but we complied with the order and headed home. The problem is that we had to follow more orders from the authorities when we arrived. Fourteen days of voluntary isolation! And because we landed in Toronto with our sister-in-law who lives only a few kilometres away from this city, we decided to go do our isolation there. This means that as I write this I’m in Canada, but not in my home where my artistic materials are. I’m not complaining, only for the fact that I have plenty of inspiration for pieces but no material to work with and no space to execute them.
Otherwise this is comfortable and warm and we have food to eat and the sister-in-law is more than charming…but we aren’t in our environment… The confinement that is asked of us demands that we don’t go out at all during the entire fourteen days. Friends bring us groceries and we communicate via internet with family and friends.
I have undertaken to organise my list of finished art pieces. I’ve started a spread sheet with columns comprising of the name, the height, the width, the weight, the price, etc., etc. These are questions asked on Internet sales platforms of which I’m part of (my Artsper page). With this spread sheet I’ll have my full repertoire of artwork at my fingertips.
I’m not lost and desperate with this confinement because I find that this time is useful for reflection; I have time to look at what’s being done in the galleries, on the web. I’ve started an Instagram page where thousands of artists post marvellous pieces. I’ve communicated with some of them and exchanged interesting posts. I still marvel at the fact that I have conversations with artists from around the world. It’s a blessing. Anyone can do this and benefit from it.
I also have been looking to learn how to paint more realistic scenes, such as poppies. I have a disinclination toward teachers – sorry all you teachers out there. So when I want to learn things I use YouTube. Here is a link I used to learn how to paint poppies amongst many other things.
Voluntary isolation isn’t so bad if you set your mind to things that you have been pushing back, or use it for long and tedious projects. They don’t have to be about art.
Please stay healthy. The world needs art. The world needs us, the word needs you.
Marc Thivierge, member of the Algarve Society of Artists