By Cecilia Martin
On one of the coldest days this winter, fifteen members of the Ottawa Society of Botanical Artists gathered at Claudia’s house for a most enjoyable afternoon, disproving our earlier concerns that we would not get many members out to anything in the winter!
Janet, our president, suggested that the theme for this get-together should be compiling a “Resource Carousel”. Participants came armed with their favourite books from their own collections, and supplies that have assisted in their artistic endeavours. They were also ask to list videos, web sites and blogs of interest and to suggest ideas for activities, outings, specialized topics they would like to learn more about and guest speakers they would like have for our meetings throughout the year.
Four tables were set up in Claudia’s spacious ground floor, each area dedicated to a specific topic. When I arrived I was happy to see the dining room table piled high with books, and numerous people around it happily browsing through the collection. Mary did a magnificent job of listing all the books on her laptop during the afternoon, giving us a good start on our project of recording the books in order to make a list available on this blog.
A second table was positioned by a window overlooking Claudia’s beautiful back yard, primarily to list suppliers and supplies people felt were worthy of note. Inga brought along a light box she had recently purchased, Mary had a useful helping hands stand with a magnifier. An inexpensive way to help with holding plant material in a stable position. Carla brought in some brushes that have their own water reservoir, which she is currently experimenting with. Janet kept records of all information that was shared in this area, and Carla listed many web sites, videos and blogs as our “techie” recorder! Likewise, ideas for outings, speakers and topics were shared at other tables.
All of this done with a beautiful background winter scene in Claudia’s backyard, that included numerous woodpeckers’ cardinals and other birds at her bird feeders.
Many delicious treats were contributed by members and tea and coffee served. There was constant lively chatter and laughter, and the “winter blahs” dispelled from all of us. It was lovely to re-establish old friendships, and meet new members as well.
We left feeling that we had accomplished a good start to our Resource initiative and happy to spend an exhilarating afternoon and to forget, if only for those few hours, the winter’s seemingly never ending chill.