Archive for the “Freda Diesing School” Category

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Frogs #3

At long last, I have released a NW coast frogs tessellation! Quite a few people have been asking about a frog design of this sort. I have to admit, it was a bit fun working on this one. Look closely, there’s a few details in here that don’t pop out right away.

If you are interested, you can purchase

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Happy Earth Day!

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Opening night of "First: an Exhibit of First Nations Art from Around BC"

Opening night of the First exhibit was a considerable success. Meeting with other artists in the area was a bonus, and it was humbling to be shown alongside artists such as Robert Davidson.

It will be exhibiting for the next two months at the gallery. Check out the gallery website for more details.

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A few years ago I had a friend that killed himself.  In this life, we have choices.  We can chose one career or another, we can chose to travel or stay at home, we can chose to love or we can chose not to love.  Love is a choice, suicide is a choice–both are a commitment, both are an act, both are the same and yet polar opposites.

When I got the phone call that my friend killed himself, I had the brush to canvas on the above painting.  This was many years ago.  I put aside the painting and finished it a few days later.

Many questions remained unanswered.  Why did he do this?  Was it something that I did or didn’t do?

And of course there was the emotional side to it.  Remembering all the times that we had together, the funny things that he would say and do, and how loving he seemed to be.  Why did he do this?

Of course, people had all sorts of answers about this and would try to help by saying all sorts of things like, “he had a mental illness” or “he was into drugs”; both of which were true, but this was my friend and I loved him.  Why did he do this?

Fast forward 2 years.  A friend comes by my house and comments on this painting.  I keep a database of all my paintings and wrote a note about this at the time: “Painting this when I heard about N–my friend that took his own life in Jan of 2007.  My friend G says that this painting is both calm and angry at the same time.  I did finished the angry part about a month after starting the painting in jan”

Fast forward about 3 years from then.  I am married and just finished a year of art school, studying northwest coast art.  Amy and I are back in Topley and it’s a drizzly spring morning.  There’s a train on the tracks near our house, stalled out.  Nothing unusual because they usually do that on the bypass there–near the signal light in the above painting.

This, however, was not to be a normal spring morning.  The first responder’s call out alarm goes off (I volunteer as a first responder)…

At the time we were just told where the incident was with no details.  When we got there, the engineer told us that someone stepped in front of his train.  Sharp pang in your gut.  You make a decision.  Do you want to see this?  Do you go on?

My partner and I go and find the body.

There wasn’t much blood.  Aside from a compound fracture in the right leg, there was not much gore.  Elderly patient, no identification other than a ring and a jacket.  From how he was built, it looked like he was a worker for most of his life, probably at one of the mills or mines.  From what we could tell and what we were told, this was a suicide.

It didn’t effect me as much as my friend.  I didn’t recognize this man on the tracks in the exact location depicted in the scene above.

Even after I found out that this man was the husband of the woman who commented on my painting above, I don’t think that I shed a single tear.  I was too worn out from shedding all those tears over my friend and I knew it wasn’t going to bring anyone back.

I knew then that I needed to talk to someone.

Five years after losing my friend, and many many hours and days wondering why, I finally asked a friend, who was a closer friend to N, what they did and how they coped.  They told me that they saw many counselors and even had a nervous breakdown before they saw a psychologist.

This was what I had to do.

So, I finally talked with someone about how I felt and they finally gave me an answer that I could accept, after all these years of “why?”  They said that he did what he did not because of me or anyone, and not even because they didn’t have the will to live; but because they had the will to die.

It was not because I offended him and he was getting back at me, it was because he simply had the will to die.

Love and suicide are very similar in many ways, but mainly so because both are an act of will that has far reaching consequences beyond the direct participants.  It is written in the Bible:

“Blessed be the Lord, who daily loadeth us with benefits, even the God of our salvation. Selah.  He that is our God is the God of salvation; and unto GOD the Lord belong the issues from death.”

Psalm 68:19,20

And unto God, the Lord, belong the issues from death… God is love… “Chose you this day who you will serve…” I would consider the above painting one of my most prophetic to date and yet at first glance it does not seem to testify of Jesus and yet it so does…

‎”Place me like a seal over your heart, like a seal on your arm; for love is as strong as death, its jealousy unyielding as the grave. It burns like blazing fire, like a mighty flame.”

Song of Solomon 8:6

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My facebook page is past 500 likes. The 500 likes draw is over. The time has come to announce a winner. (Make sure to enter the 750 likes draw if you haven’t already)

There were a total of 307 entries to this draw, with 99 people included twice because they shared (188 entries).

It was quite an exciting contest, with a lot of positive feedback from a wide variety of geographic locations. A few people related to the art style because they live or lived in the areas where it was derived in the Pacific Northwest. (For those who are American, I am referring to Northwest BC and Alaska. 🙂

So, without any further ado, I would like to announce the winner of the 500 likes contest to be…

Cathy Choinicki

Congratulations, Cathy!

With the success of my 500 likes contest, my 750 likes contest is now on. Same rules: (1) like my page (2) post your intent on my wall. Here is what I am giving away for the 750 likes draw, it’s entitled “Salmon”:

If you would like to purchase this work, please click on the image above. If you don’t do facebook, please leave a comment here. Thanks

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I am putting on an amazing, super, great, stupendous, all out, no holds barred, free artwork draw! My last draw went to Katherine Clayton, who won a $200 serigraph, Butterflies. The next one will go to whoever enters the draw before my page reaches 500 likes!!!

This draw, I am giving away a superb quality pigmented ink work titled “Bears”.

To enter, simply (1) “like” my facebook page, and (2) post on my wall that you would like to be part of the contest. If you would like to be added to the draw a second time, then share on your Facebook profile about this draw. that’s it, that’s all. Hope to see your name!


Also, I am exhibiting as the Lakes Artisan Centre’s first guest exhibitor. This exhibit goes on for the month of February. Opening night is Friday, Feb 3rd, from 6pm to 8pm at the Lakes Artisan Centre in Burns Lake. I am displaying one of my newest pieces there and it should be a good show.

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Perry Rath, butterflies, and I

I am currently exhibiting at the first ever Smithers Art Gallery first nations group exhibit. This is a photo of me with my print “Butterflies” which is a print about respect. Check out the prints section of my website for more info. The show will be on until the end of January.  Below is a map to where the Smithers Art Gallery is.

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