Posts Tagged ‘leaves’

“Sing me a rainbow, paint me a dream.
Show me a world that I’ve never seen.”

The first Monday after the “fall back” time change is always one of my favorite days of the year.  That’s when I feel like I got an extra hour of sleep.  So I woke up feeling great but of course it’s November so there were some grey clouds.  Still, the phrase “I can sing a rainbow” was stuck in my head.  But I don’t sing, so I did the next best thing and took a rainbow of photos as I walked today.  Beat the blahs away by capturing the brightest moments.

reflections in the side of a red car

cracked concrete wall that is painted red

close up of an orange construction sign

part of a jack o'lantern carved pumpkin for halloween, triangle eyes and nose

yellow plastic cone in front of a pale yellow wall

yellowish green leaves hanging on a tree

slightly rotting wood painted bright green

part of a greenish blue poster

close up of a bright blue letter on a white background

reflections of blue sky in the window of a blue car

pint boxes of blueberries

part of a poster on a wall, shades of purple

purplish brown leaves, close up picture

below: And what goes best with rainbows? Why not a unicorn?! It looks like the work of #whatsvictorupto

sidewalk painting of a unicorn head, by whatsvictorupto

If you know the children’s song, “I Can Sing a Rainbow”, you will know that the colours in the lyrics aren’t in the correct ROYGBV order (or IV at the end if you include indigo).  It’s a cute little song so I will forgive the author.

And in case your childhood didn’t include this song, here are the words:
Red and yellow and pink and green,
Purple and orange and blue,
I can sing a rainbow,
sing a rainbow,
Sing a rainbow too.

Listen with your eyes,
Listen with you ears,
And sing everything you see.
I can sing a rainbow,
Sing a rainbow,
Sing a rainbow too.

 

 

It’s early November and autumn is here – I think.   Some leaves, like on the locust and maple trees below, have turned colours and begun to fall but others remain green and on the tree.  After the warm than usual October that we were fortunate to have, the weather has turned to grey and damp and all too seasonally November.   Luckily, a heavier coat and a scarf is all that is required – so off we go!

autumn street scene with locust tree with yellow leaves, sidewalk, some dead leaves on the ground, grass still green, orange leaves on the tree in the background

below: I spotted these little rusted Coke and Sprite signs on a house on Christie street.   Like the autumn leaves, the weather has changed their colours and I especially like the pale turquoise that the Sprite bottle has become.  It nicely matches the trim on the neighbour’s house.

three old rusted advertising signs for coca cola and sprite, metal signs, upper level of a building

below: Another example of the effects of time on metal.  A little less rust here but there are some interesting shapes and forms created by the peeling paint.

metal corrugated metal wall, close up detail of peeling green paint and rust

below: Looking into a shop window to see a sad and lonely cat.  Sad eyes?  or are they eyes of a cat dreaming of the outside world and wishing it wasn’t relegated to a shelf of old and empty things.

looking into a window of an antique store, a porcelain cat, sitting upright, with sad look on its face, on a shelf with empty bottles and jugs

below: More old, but certainly not sad.   It’s a bright, shiny and obviously well-loved Chrysler.

an old orangish brown Chrysler car parked in a driveway, front facing the street,

below: Advice to heed.

red words painted on the side of a white building in an alley, words say - When you love someone, let them know

below: No wise words here – just scrawls and tags.  But isn’t the orange a fantastic colour for a wall?

orange stucco wall with graffiti on it.

below: Tiny! A teensie tiny little house with a lawn that’s sparse but neatly kept.  Once you start looking for these little treasures, you realize that there are quite a few of them in Toronto.  I wonder if anyone has documented them?

very small one storey house between two large houses, green lawns, sidewalk in front,

Warning – tangent ahead!  This reminds of a children’s story called “Benjamin Budge and Barnaby Ball” written by Florence Heide Parry.  It’s a story of two men living in two different houses.  Benjamin was a very big man living in a very small house while Barnaby was a very small man living in a big house.  The illustrations of Benjamin squeezing into his mini sized house were wonderful (by Sally Matthews).  Of course, to live happily ever after the two men trade houses.

“Benjamin Budge was a great big man,
A great big huge TREMENDOUS man,
But his tiny house was so very small,
There wasn’t room for him at all!”

below: Benjamin Budge sleeps ‘in’ his bedillustration by Sally Matthews of a picture of a large man sleeping half on the floor and half on his tiny bed in his tiny bedroom. From the children's book Benjamin Budge and Barnaby Small

below: Veering back to the subject of architecture… this style of apartment building was very common in the 1920’s.  Three storeys, no elevator and probably no parking but with charming little details in the brickwork.  If I remember correctly, this building is on Bathurst street just south of Dupont.

three storey brick apartment building with central white door entranceway

Little vegetable gardens in both back and front yards are very numerous here, probably because of the combination of the large number of Italian and Portuguese immigrants who settled here and the popularity of ‘urban farming’ – veggies instead of grass. Being November, there were only a few remnants of this year’s harvest – a few tomato plants here and some Swiss chard there.

below: One back yard still has all its wooden stakes standing on guard. A forest of stakes.

chain link fence in front of a large number of wooden stakes that were used in a vegetable garden earlier in the season, but now autumn so there are no plants

below: Another way to garden in the city!

patio outside a house is covered with plastics bins of different kinds, all of which have been turned into planters, autumn now so plants no longer alive but boxes and coolers and bins remain.

below: Xena the warrior princess still watches over Vermont Avenue. She’s faded a bit since I last took her picture two years ago. You can see her (and others) in Neighbourhood watch good guys that I posted in 2015.

altered neighbourhood watch sign, with a picture in the center,

 There are lots of lanes and alleys in Seaton village (this part of the city).   One of last year’s blog posts ‘same, same, but different‘ is about some of the lanes.  There is some street art in these alleys but not too much – here are a couple from yesterday’s visit.

below: Art follows life or is it vice verse?

red leaves on a vine growing in front of a white fence that had a mural of birdhouse and plants and flowers painted on it.

below: Flowers? Or just smudges on a pole?

smudges on a metal pole that look a bit like flowers

below: Playing basketball beside Toronto – a rather lopsided photo I’m afraid.

basketball hoop above a garage door that has a large map of Toronto, in blue and green painted on it.

white garage door with some of the rectangles painted in turquoise, orange and purple, with swirls under the rectanagles that look like G's

semi circle covering bottom half of garage door, looks like bald head with a few curly hairs growing upwards from the scalp

mural on an exterior wall outside Kos restaurant on Bathurst Street, the mural is in the front of the restaurant by the patio, no one sitting outside, blue umbrellas are down.

below: Herringbone pattern made from bricks.

chevron pattern (herring bone pattern) of bricks on a driveway, some autumn leaves on the bricks

below: A rather forlorn looking bench and seat outside the laundromat.

front of a laundromat. blue sign that says coin laundry, an old bench and an old chair sitting outside by the front door. two windows through which you can see the washing machines

below: A newspaper rack decorated with a garland of fake ivy.  Insert fake news reference here ….

a newspaper rack outside a corner convenience store, the newspapers (there aren't many) are held down with bricks, the rack is decorated with a fake ivy garland

an old chair on a porch, side view.

looking through a park to a street with a blue house and a red house, cars parked in front, autumn leaves,

below: Today I’m going to end on a dangerous note.  Keep walking and Stay safe!

construction site with a danger due to sign that has been altered to say danger due to life

an orange, or salmon, coloured wall with a window. in the window is a reflection of a pair of eyes from a large street art mural. under the window are two ladders lying horizontal.

On Dundas West, just west of Dufferin, there are two lanes with large murals by clandestinos.

One is the alley to the west of the Lulu Lounge where both sides are covered with fantastic paintings by fiya, shalak, and bruno smoky as well as a few others.  I blogged about it just over two years ago and here is the link to the original post, “life as the shadow of vida“.   Earlier this week I took another look at it – it’s still looking great and there have been no changes so I didn’t take any photos.

The other alley is nearby but on the north side of Dundas Street.  Actually, it’s hardly an alley, more like a driveway which made taking pictures of the whole mural difficult.   Also, if you are traveling eastbound on Dundas, you’d miss it.  Here are the pictures that I managed to take:

part of a large colourful mural by clandestinos smoky and shalak - close up of a large gorilla face

part of a large colourful mural by clandestinos smoky and shalak - a crocodile or alligator coming out of the water

part of a large colourful mural by clandestinos smoky and shalak - a small bird sitting on a rock by a creek

part of a large colourful mural by clandestinos smoky and shalak - bird, turtle and croodile in a nature scene

part of a large colourful mural by clandestinos smoky and shalak - a small bird on the base of a tree trunk

part of a large colourful mural by clandestinos smoky and shalak - a large bird with its wings out stretched getting ready to take off

part of a large colourful mural by clandestinos smoky and shalak - a turtle on a rock

part of a large colourful mural by clandestinos smoky and shalak - lareg greenleaves with their signature

I was going to go looking for autumn but, silly me, I soon realized that I didn’t need to look for it.   It’s all around us.  All you have to do is look out the window, or better yet, step out the door and you’re in the middle of it.  It’s falling in front of you, swirling in the breezes and crunching under your feet.

street scene, large trees with yellow and orange leaves, with a park in the center

a pot of purple flowers with a yellow tree in the background

a stone fence with a metal gate, large trees, autumn leaves
a branch of yellow leaves, autumn tree with blue sky and the turret of Casa Loma in the background

two storey brick house with large tree in front, smaller trees with yellow leaves in the background.
park in the fall, leaves on the ground, trees still with some leaves in oranges, rusts, and yellows, playground in the distance

a metal bench in front of a large tree in a cemetery, tree has yellow leaves, autumn colours, change of season, fallen leaves on the ground around the bench

trees in autumn, red leaves and yellow leaves

A comparison of sorts.  Two painters from two different time periods.  One looked north and the other looks south.  The north with its barren cold and blue in comparison to the south and its lush greenness.  A famous anglo Canadian painter who went searching for simplicity and a relatively new British painter with Jamaican roots who explores complexities.

Lawren Harris and Hurvin Anderson.  You should know which is which!

I didn’t purposely set out to compare them.  I saw the ‘The Idea of North’ exhibit that features the Steve Martin paintings of Lawren Harris first.  As much as I like the Group of Seven, Harris’s minimalist snow and ice paintings have never been my favorite.  Still, it was an interesting collection to see.  After I finished there, I headed up to the contemporary art floors.  The fifth floor is still closed (new installation opening later this week) but I discovered that the fourth floor is devoted to the works of Hurvin Anderson.  As I walked around the Anderson installation I kept thinking of similarities and differences between him and Lawren Harris.

many people in a room in an art gallery, standing around and looking at paintings.

below: Mountains in Snow: Rocky Mountain Paintings VII, 1929.  One of the many famous Lawren Harris snow and ice paintings.  Light, reflected light, shadows, and contrasts.  The elements reduced to their simplest form.   The landscape itself is almost secondary.  Or the landscape is the medium, not the message.

a Lawren Harris painting of a snow covered mountain, blue sky in the background.

below: The large painting on the right is ‘Pic Island’ painted about 1924.  Pic Island is an unpopulated island along the north shore of Lake Superior.  Today the island is part of Neys Provincial Park.

a woman walks through a gallery with paintings on the wall. She stops to look at one of them.

below: Two of Hurvin Anderson’s paintings from his Caribbean landscape collection.  On the left is ‘Beaded Curtain – Red Apples’, 2010.

three young women sitting on a couch with their backs to the camera, they are looking at two large paintings on a wall, by Hurvin Anderson.

below:  ‘Constructed View’, 2010.  Anderson’s Caribbean paintings have grilles incorporated into them.  These are the security features prevalent on houses and businesses in the Caribbean (and elsewhere in the world), metal fixtures over windows and doors to keep out the unwanted.  They contain what’s inside.  They are a barrier.  They intrude on the landscape and cut it up.  Again, the landscape is almost secondary.  The message, or emotion, is more important.  [aside – There is a grille in the painting above (right) but it’s more subtle.]

a landscape painting in shades of green with fragments of white grille overlayed, repeating pattern of 4 circles with a square

Lawren Harris painted his famous mountain pictures in the late 1920’s.  In 1930 he visited Baffin Island and a few paintings resulted from that trip.  I learned that although I associate Harris with icebergs and arctic scenery, most of his snow and ice paintings were from the north shore of Lake Superior or from the mountains around Banff Alberta.

The repetoire of both painters is not limited to landscapes.  Harris painted many houses and street scenes from downtown Toronto including houses and streets that were demolished years ago.  The examples of Anderson’s non-landscape work were interiors.  Both men used bold colours but Anderson tends to show more detail in his paintings.

below: ‘Welcome: Carib’  The Welcome sign of the bar in  juxtaposition with the red metal work covering the window.  The picture beckons to us but keeps us out.

a man in a straw fedora stands in front of a painting called Welcome: Carib by Hurvin anderson, it features a red star patterned grille over the painting, over the window that is in front of the interior scene.

below: One of the paintings from Anderson’s Barbershop collection, ‘Flat Top’ 2008.

two young women walk away from a large painting hanging on an art gallerywall.  two barber chairs in a barber shop, empty.  Bright pink wall with squares of colour.

below: A selection of colourful Toronto houses in winter painted by Harris in the 1920s.

two women look at a line Lawren Harris paintings of brightly coloured houses in winter on a wall in an art gallery

In the 1930’s Lawren Harris’s personal life went awry.  The words on the wall at the AGO says that he divorced, remarried and moved to the states.  That’s a bit of spin.  He didn’t divorce his wife because that would be messy, apparently.  Instead in 1934 he just married the wife of an old friend.   And of course that turned messy and the new couple left for the USA for a few years before eventually settling in Vancouver BC.   Harris’s post-1934 work is very abstract and was never as successful as his earlier paintings.

below:  You can see the influence of the mountain paintings in this,  ‘Painting No. 4’, about 1939, painted when he was a member of the Transcendental Painting Group.  This was a collective of artists in New Mexico that Harris help to found.

an abstract painting by Lawren Harris, circles and diamonds in an egg shape

below: Since I have no idea where the art of Hurvin Anderson is headed, I will leave you with one more of his present paintings (I’m not sure those two ideas actually go together!).  ‘Foska Foska’, the interior of a shop behind yellow bars and black mesh.

a painting by Hurvin Anderson called Foska Foska, shows the interior of a store with a yellow metal gate in front.  and a wire structure covering the ceiling too

 

The Idea of North – until 18 September

Hurvin Anderson – until 21 August

#HarrisAGO | #HurvinAndersonAGO

Well, this May 2 4 weekend has been splendidly sunny and fabulously warm!  I hope you’ve had the chance to take advantage of it, whether sitting on a patio with a cold drink and friends, or out enjoying the the greenness that has bloomed all around us.   It’s been a great few days to get up close and take a good look at nature.

looking down at a piece of concrete at water's edge, in the concrete is a cut off hollow pole, there are pebble and water in the hole.

below: Old moss covered metal seems to reach out of Lake Ontario like claws.

old bent metal embedded in concrete but partially inderwater. Moss is growing over it and making it look green

below: Reflections in the Yellow Creek, Beltline trail.

reflections of trees and blue sky in a creek, blue water, dark brown tree trunks and mottled greens of the leaves, in a ravine, in the city

below: Wet pebbles with the beginnings of green moss growing on them shine in the morning sun.

pebbles in greys and browns in the water near the shoreline of Lake Ontario. The pebbles closest to the shore are bright green with the beginnings of moss growth

below: Greater celandine, a yellow flowering plant, blooms along the railing of Milkmans Lane.

yellow flowers in bloom in the ravine, against a railing post, with shadows cast on the wood, large green leaves

below: New growth unfolds in the sunshine.

small maple tree with lots of new red leaves that have just come out. Grey rocks blurry in the background

below: The dark pink blossoms were at their peak this week.

 many pink blossoms on the branch of a tree

below: Green and brown mosses sway with the water currents along the shore of Lake Ontario.

looking in the water beside some rocks. There is moss and algae in green, yellow, rust and brown swirling in the water of Lake Ontario

the end of a shovel is in the ground, behind a chainlink fence. The sun is shining and making reflections. The reflection of the chainlink fence is on the shovel.

below: The snow fences have been bundled up and put away for the summer.

rolls of wood slat snow fences bundled away for the summer in large rolls. 4 rolls viewed from the end.

There is time between winter and spring that is a dreary time of greyness and dullness.  It is a time when the the snow is gone but nature hasn’t come out of hibernation.  It is also a time best forgotten.

between winter and spring, the snow has melted, there are no leaves on the trees, the weather is grey, looking down a path that comes to an end in front of a bench. Behind the bench are trees, dead leaves on the ground, and a grey stone fence. dreary, grey

Luckily we don’t have to wait long.

A man sits on the edge of a large planter with trees and shrubs in it in front of Roy Thomson Hall. There are no leaves on the tree yet.

… just a little longer ….

Two red Muskoka chairs sit on the Wave Deck at the waterfront in Toronto. Boats in the harbour are in the background, some with plastic wrap still on them from winter storage.

or if you can’t wait, there’s always plastic!

a garden full of fake flowers, colourful plastic flowers instead of real flowers.

From the time the first spring flowers start to show

A small white fence with some empty planters in front of it. Old vines are on it (no leaves). There is a frame for plants to cling to in the shape of a lyre that is attached to the fence

until the time they are in full bloom is usually only a matter of days.

A group of bright yellow daffodils in the sunshine in full bloom with the front of Osgoode Hall on a warm sunny spring day. Blue sky.

Trees too soon show their colours.  The yellows of the willow trees usually appear first.

downtown Toronto, the white curved roof of the Rogers Centre with the CN Tower beside it. WIllow trees and grassy park are in front.
Almost daily the trees are greener…

Budding leaves - The light yellowish green new spring growth on a tree that is growing beside a greenish blue tinted window. Some tree reflections in the window too.

… or full of flowers.

looking upwards from below the branches of a magnolia tree in full bloom. Lots of pink and white flowers, no leaves, on the tree. Bright blue sky in the background. A sunny spring day.

And for another year we forget the last grey days of winter

A rack of geraniums in bloom for sale sitting outside a store. The sidewalk by the store is shaded with white, green and red umbrellas.