My COVID-19 vacation: Stay-at-home artist residency, May 1-25, 2020

Still image from Great Blue Heron (Not staying long), short animation

During the month of May, I did a stay-at-home artist residency when my overseas travel plans got cancelled. Watch the video summary here, or keep reading for details.

May 2020. Like many who had planned vacations during this time, mine too got cancelled. I had been accepted to a 2-week artist residency on the Greek island of Kefalonia and had planned some time before and after for a bit of independent wandering in Athens and other parts. Alas, this was not to be.

Although I was disappointed that I wouldn’t get to see a new country (and a beautiful, culturally vibrant one at that) or have the opportunity to share an immersive experience with other resident artists, there were advantages to spending this time off at home:

If the main goal of the trip was to create artwork, then home was an excellent location to do just that, for a number of reasons:

  • At home, my entire toolbox (or TOYbox, depending on my mood) is at my disposal:  I couldn’t have brought it all with me had I left home. I had 3 weeks and my choice of materials to create anything I wanted.
  • My dedicated art studio of easel, drafting table and animation stand are located within mere feet of one another in our apartment:  Absolutely no travel or setup time required.
My art studio, 6 AM

And last but not least, I had the company of my wonderfully supportive spouse and our 2 (equally supportive) cats to whom I no longer had to say goodbye for the duration – the dreaded downside to my solo travels.  

Staycation artist residency: activities

Main objectives:

  1. Continue working on my animation in progress, “Costa Rica’s creatures” – a short, handmade work about the wildlife and geography of Costa Rica, based on my travel there in 2018.
  2. Create illustrations and short animations inspired by fashion and nature.

Other activities – the joys of Montréal

I also had the chance to watch our beautiful city blossom, day by day, from spring into summer on multiple running/hiking jaunts to Parc du Mont-Royal, walks through our Plateau neighbourhood, and (socially distanced) picnics (for two) in Parc La Fontaine. All this, plus a bonus sighting of 2 Great Blue Herons who graced our park with their presence for a few days while the pond was low and inspired some artwork (see illustration at the top of this post).

Final thoughts

Although my work does not speak directly to world issues (for now), I believe that nothing is created in a vacuum. Had it not been for COVID-19, this report would have been completely different.

As I write this, the world is being transformed by two incredible forces: one a pandemic, and now a global uprising against racial inequality, calling for change that is long overdue. I am humbled by the magnitude of both, and their impact on life as we know it.

I share the hope – and belief – that our world will emerge from this period a kinder, stronger and more just place for all.

Thank you for reading – wishing everyone safety and good health.

Screening of Saison à Saison // Présentation de Saison à Saison

Onstage at Kino Montreal, November 1, 2019
Participants in the Kino monthly challenge / Participants du Défi du mois Kino

Friday was a great evening at Kino Montreal! My short film Saison à Saison (Season to Season) was screened as part of Kino’s “Monthly Challenge”: Each participant had to create a 2-minute film on a given theme, and complete it within a month. This month, the theme was “Nightmare before Christmas: Films about Halloween and films about Christmas”. Thank you Kino Montréal for the opportunity to participate and to present my work.

View Saison à Saison 


                                                                                                                                                           Vendredi, c’était une soirée géniale chez Kino Montréal ! Mon court

Red bird from Saison à Saison/Red bird from Saison à Saison / Oiseau rouge de Saison à Saison
Red bird from Saison à Saison/Red bird from Saison à Saison / Oiseau rouge de Saison à Saison

métrage d’animation Saison à Saison a été présenté dans le cadre du « Défi mensuel » de Kino : Chaque participant a dû créer un film de 2 minutes sur un thème donné, et tous avaient un mois pour le compléter. Ce mois, le thème était “Nightmare before Christmas: (films d’Halloween et films de Noël)”. Merci à Kino Montréal, pour l’occasion d’y participer et de présenter mon travail.

Regardez Saison à Saison

30 Days in Venice (30 things learned) – film d’animation // animated film

En avril 2017, j’ai eu l’occasion de voyager à Venise, Italie, pour une résidence artistique. Pendant ce mois, j’ai créé des œuvres d’art, en faisant du tourisme !


In April 2017, I had the chance to travel to Venice, Italy, for an artist residency. While I was there, I created some artwork and did some sightseeing!


Bande-annonce // Trailer

Le résultat : Un an de plus, mon film d’animation, intitulé « 30 Days in Venice (30 things learned) », sera publié bientôt! Voici la bande-annonce: 30 Days in Venice (30 things learned)


The result: One year later, my animated film entitled “30 Days in Venice (30 things learned)” will soon be released! Here is the trailer: 30 Days in Venice (30 things learned)





30 Days in Venice (30 things learned) – le film d’animation complet // full animation


Je suis heureuse d’annoncer que mon film d’animation 30 Days in Venice (30 things learned) est maintenant terminé! Vous pouvez voir le film complet ici:

30 Days in Venice (30 things learned) 


I am delighted to announce that my animated film 30 Days in Venice (30 things learned) is now complete! You can see the full animation here:

30 Days in Venice (30 things learned) 



Des rayures // Stripes

Ce soir, au coin Sherbrooke et Berri, j’ai vu cette tenue extraordinaire. Il faut mentionner que voici mon premier dessin d’un homme sur mon blogue!


Tonight at the corner of Sherbrooke and Berri I saw this extraordinary outfit. I should mention that this is my first drawing of a man on my blog!


Portrait d’hiver // Winter portrait

L’hiver continue. Et quiconque porte un manteau qui n’est pas un parka monochrome est notable! J’ai remarqué que ses cheveux étaient la même couleur que ses chaussettes..


Winter continues.. and anyone who is not wearing a monochromatic parka stands out! I noticed that her hair colour matched her socks…