Monday, November 18, 2013

The printing has started!

In my last post I previewed the design for this year's CBC Sounds of the Season linoleum block print. The prints help raise money for food banks here in Ontario.

This year's print is the Old Toronto City Hall clock tower (feeling nostalgic for the old city I guess - I also love bells and clocks.)

This year, I cut the actual printing block alongside some amazing artists at ArtHeart Community Art Center.

I was asked to come and give a "how-to" presentation. We all sat together for about three hours, making designs on paper, transferring that to a block and then cutting into our blocks.

It was amazing to see some of the designs. There were faces, skulls, snowy landscapes and winged superheroes. Most of us even reached the point where we could pull prints off the blocks.

If you haven't done a lino-cut since high school - give it a try.

The amazing things about block prints (for me) is that the finished product always has a cool arty look - even if you are not the greatest "artist" in the world. 

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

2013 Lino Cut

Each year the great folks at CBC Toronto put on a big all-day holiday show - Sounds of the Season. December 6th is the date.

The doors of the CBC Broadcast Centre are thrown wide-open and there's music, great stories, and a chance to meet your fave CBC celebs.

All proceeds go to help Ontario Food Banks such as the amazing Daily Bread.

I do a lino-cut each year, as a kind of 'thanks' gift for people who donate $100+. There are usually about 300 takers or so.

Here's the rough sketch for this year's print. (I guess Toronto City Hall is on my mind these days... hmmmm....)

I'm extra excited this year because I'll be cutting the actual plate (using a knife to gouge into a piece of linoleum) with the crew at ArtHeart - an amazing community group in Toronto that offers art supplies and lessons to people who might not get the chance otherwise.


Sunday, November 10, 2013

Some writerly advice

I did a great tour through the schools and libraries in Innisfil, Ontario last year.

They were running a writer's contest and they asked me for some of my advice.

Still valid (I think) for anyone who is taking part in NaNoWriMo.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Monday, November 4, 2013

Smiles all around!

I just got back from an amazing trip to Windsor for the Windsor book festival. I asked Margaret Atwood a question about genre fiction (which she dodged!)

(Here's a nice pic from the crew at the Public Library. A nice blog post about my visit is here.)

I had dinner (and was on stage) with one of my heroes, Ken Oppel, and we were joined by recent Man Booker winner Eleanor Catton for dinner on friday. Her dad was a philosophy prof too!

Then I got home and there was a very nice package from my publisher, Simon and Schuster, waiting for me.

Now I'm back in my attic in my grungy sweats and Sabres sweatshirt, and getting back to work.
But I'm smiling.