Umbrella Fall 2021

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8mErel Fall 2021 o V l. 30 No. 3

What's Under the Umbrella? o o o

Justin Rutledge comes home David Alexander’s new sci-fi novel RCI Studios fires up new foundry


A publication of the

Janet Jarrell, Executive Director Adam Gray, Creative Director Fiona Campbell, Communications & Outreach Director Andrew Gray, Graphic Designer Kim Lidstone, Bookkeeper The Quinte Arts Council is a not-for-profit, charitable organization, registration number 107869448 RR 0001. Publications mail agreement number 40667523. Published by: The Quinte Arts Council, P.O. Box 22113 Belleville, Ont. K8N 2Z5 Printed by: Mr. Print, Belleville, Ont. Material may be reprinted only with permission. Umbrella is mailed to members and delivered to distribution points throughout the Quinte Region. The information contained within is believed to be reliable, but accuracy cannot be guaranteed. We do not assume responsibility for any errors and/or omissions related to submitted content. QAC programs are funded in part by:

John M. & Bernice


MESSAGE FROM EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR Regardless of age or stage, there is something about this back-to-school time of year that evokes feelings of change, fresh starts and new beginnings. While we’re very much still navigating our way through the pandemic, there are undeniable signs of hope and recovery: just look to our local arts scene. Within these pages of Umbrella, you’ll discover our unique way of exploring, exhibiting and celebrating Quinte Region artists. Umbrella helps us build a fundamental - and thriving - arts community where we can make linkages across disciplinary, geographic, and cultural boundaries. Thank you to all who support the magazine you are holding. While we thank all of our writers in this (and every) issue, we want to acknowledge a new generation artist, Allen Steinberg, for his

contributions. Allen is a musician and talented writer who penned the Justin Rutledge cover story, Last Chance Marie, among others. Thanks to the Canada Summer Jobs Program, Allen worked with the QAC over the last few months and is now getting ready to go on tour with his band, Arm’s Length. (More on them in a future issue!) This issue explores the return of live theatre, film and dance. Get lost in the powerful imagery in the photography and fine art sections. Then settle in for some reading by local authors, and marvel at RCI Studios - a world class foundry right here in our backyard! Despite lockdowns and the pandemic, the QAC hosted the biennial Expressions show. We congratulate the winners on page 20 and thank all of the participants,

Cover: Justin Rutledge

tasked with exploring the theme Re-Imagine. Each year, the QAC administers six graduate bursaries to our next generation of artists. We hear from some of our 2020 recipients as they braved a first year of post-secondary during a pandemic! Renovations to the QAC continue (thank you to the Ontario Arts Foundation and the Parrott Foundation for your support), and we look forward to hosting professional development workshops in late fall. Stay tuned for our exciting new website that will include higher quality webpages for artist members (thank you to the Trillium Foundation, Resilient Communities Fund) and the Mayor’s Luncheon for the Arts, recognizing our arts champions for their artistic excellence, cultural leadership and/or contributions. Relentlessly, the arts push forward.

Back: RCI Studios

Table of Contents

James Walt

Quinte Arts Council Message from the Chair + Contributors Welcome new board members

2 3

Photography Mike Gaudaur Phil Norton

4 6

Theatre Hannah Feltham: From Belleville to Beijing Belleville Theatre Guild plans for the return of live theatre

8 10

Film Victor Cooper's new comedy series Joseph Palmer's journey from script to screen

12 14

Music Last Chance Marie: A decade in the making Justin Rutledge comes home

16 18

Fine Art Expressions celebrates the creative spirit Napanee Pallet-Able Art project Brianna Goddin: Deliberations of a creative mind Rachel Weagant's happy journey into the macabre

20 22 24 26

Literary Marianne Ackerman: Belleville, Susanna Moodie's town Joy Goddard showcases The County David Alexander’s new sci-fi novel, Song Of The Wayzender

28 30 32

Heritage RCI Studios offers foundry service to artists


Art Education QAC's bursary recipients one year later


Artist to Watch: Carl Wiens Sponsored by the Bay of Quinte Regional Marketing Board



Quinte Arts Council

Andrea Kerr

I am honoured to welcome you to the fall edition of Umbrella . We are so grateful for the incredible local writers, musicians, photographers, organizations and artists who have contributed to this record of our community’s vibrancy. Your membership and readership ensure that the Quinte Arts Council can continue to share the personal and collective stories that make us unique. We love hearing from folks about the way that these stories beget more stories. They create opportunity. They fulfill us, impact us and inspire us.

I challenge you to act on what inspires you - learn, create, make, design and hit publish. Pass on what inspires you, add aesthetic and cultural experiences to your life, and fund our artist community in appreciation. The Quinte Arts Council is right beside you in all these endeavours. Please visit the QAC website, connect with us, become a member if you are not already and hit donate too. We have the most up-to-date arts events events calendar in the region. We have exciting new projects, new ways for you to stay on top of the arts scene, and a new look underway - we cannot wait to share them all with you!


Kiki Carr

Lin Parkin

Peter Paylor

Ardith Racey

Andrew Gray

Jennifer Shea

Abena Beloved Green

Allen Steinberg

Full bios can be found at


Paul Papadopoulos

Welcome new board members By Allen Steinberg

Although 2020 tested the arts

sector with closed venues, empty social calendars and a rocky transition to virtual gatherings, the Quinte Arts Council (QAC) has continued to make significant progress as an organization. In their 54th annual general meeting (and 2nd consecutive held via Zoom) held this past June, these peaks and valleys were detailed and their hardworking team was celebrated. Chair Andrea Kerr announced on behalf of the QAC that two board directors will be moving on to new adventures, while two more will be welcomed to the team. Dan Atkinson has been a director since 2007 and Jenny Woods since 2014, and both have volunteered as treasurer, Chair and Past Chair. Paul Papadopoulos and Brit Johnston have both been brought aboard. Brit Johnston is an Anishinaabekwe theatre artist and arts supporter. Brit grew up on-reserve/on the land in Serpent River First Nation, studied at the University of Ottawa (Theatre B.A.; M.A. abd), and now is based in Belleville; she continues to hold strong ties to her community and Ojibwe culture. Her work with the Canadian Association for the Performing Arts (CAPACOA) and Indigenous Performing Arts Alliance (IPAA) is centered on uplifting Indigenous voices across Turtle Island.

Paul Papadopoulos has been an educator at Loyalist College since January 2011. He is currently a full-time professor in the Film & TV Production department. He is also Vice President on the Board of Directors of the Canadian Media Educators. He’s worked as a producer, director, writer, videographer, and once as an on-air reporter. He was the series producer of the Canadian Screen Award nominated program POV Sports and an associate producer for the 2006 Winter Olympic broadcast, both on CBC. Paul has been a features producer for Canadian Idol, and was the producer/director of The Zone on YTV, the award-winning weekday afternoon block which is #1 with kids across Canada. In 2010 he produced and directed several documentary series, including a series about guitar collecting, one about vintage cars and another about 1950s concept cars. At the AGM, Mayor Mitch Panciuk acknowledged the QAC’s memorable year: “For those of you who know me, you know I think that arts, culture and heritage are very important and are fundamental to society. They’re part of the reason people want to live, stay and thrive here in Belleville.” Dug Stevenson from the Bay of Quinte Regional Marketing Board also popped in to congratulate the QAC: “Your team made it through another year, but you didn’t just make it through, you thrived through.” 03

Quinte Arts Council

Brit Johnston


Mike Gaudaur


addiction t o

photography started back in high school the day I discovered that there was a darkroom tucked away behind the chemistry classroom. I quickly racked up quite a bill for all the film and paper I was using. However, I soon learned that I could pay that off, and have enough left over to buy my lunch, by selling sports action shots to the varsity athletes. That eventually led to shooting sports and human interest stories for the Trentonian Newspaper, and a part-time job as their darkroom technician.

Throughout college and my first 10 years of teaching junior high school I began shooting weddings, portraits, live theatre, and even aerial photography. In 1998 an opportunity came up to teach at an international mission school in Kenya. With my wife and two young kids we headed off to Africa. What was intended to be a two-year adventure turned into a 15 year experience. It wasn't long before I was running the graphic arts department for the school, teaching photography and graphic design, and eventually transitioning the program from film to digital. Being located midway between a half dozen of Africas’s premiere game parks afforded me the incredible opportunity to go on over 70 photo safaris, often leading groups of photographers, and other times exploring all by myself. There is nothing quite like the tranquility of sitting beside a herd of grazing elephants on the African savannah, where the loudest sound is the ripping 04

of grass and the clicking of my shutter. There were also some really exhilarating moments such as driving my Land Rover through swollen rivers or following lions on a hunt. Moving back to Canada in 2013 allowed me to realize my life-long dream of opening my own photography studio. I love the varied challenges my clients bring me, whether it is making technical photographs of a 100-foot dinosaur for the Smithsonian, or trying to get a two-year-old to smile for a family portrait. One of the most difficult tasks I face on a regular basis is producing printed reproductions of paintings and drawings for artists. They are usually very particular that every tone and hue is just right. Many photographers believe that once an image is captured with their camera their job is done. I am a firm believer that the darkroom, whether chemical or digital, is where the real magic occurs. I love being able to take the RAW pixel


data captured by my pro DSLR cameras, my pocket sized point-and-shoot camera, or even my iPhone, and bringing all the power of modern technology to bear in order to produce an image that causes viewers to pause for a moment and explore my images. I believe that “the world is charged with the grandeur of God” and my job as a photographer is to get people to stop and notice it. Sponsored by THE PARROTT GALLERY



Phil Norton

I t's sor t of i roni c,

the moment I was bitten and smitten with photography was at age 15 looking through my uncle’s Pentax single lens reflex camera with a 135 mm telephoto lens on a hairpin turn of the Mid-Ohio Can-Am Grand Prix races. Fifty years later, I have never photographed an auto race!

My hometown of Mars, PA, was an hour’s drive north of Pittsburgh where I was born and that’s where we went to purchase my first camera: a Pentax Spotmatic in 1972 and later a Vivitar 200 mm lens. Back in those days the camera shops were crowded with men (only) and cigarette smokers; mostly professionals,

That just goes to show how the camera, for me, has been a tool that makes me see the things I am interested in, whether it is childhood hobbies like race cars, pets and family vacations, or professionally today, nature conservation and documenting geographic regions. I was fortunate to grow up with photography all around me. My father had a 35 mm Kodak Signet he had purchased in the US Army and we had the old Kodak Brownie Bull’s-Eye from 1898 that his grandfather and his father used, along with all of the mounted prints they had taken of trains, oil wells and homemade automobiles. There were also two professional photographers in our town, so I was introduced to the darkroom early. Of course I was shooting mostly black and white film, plus the occasional roll of colour Kodachrome slides.


either newspaper photographers or portrait and wedding photographers. While my initial interest was photographing flowers and scenic landscapes, I evolved into a news photographer at Penn State University working for the daily newspaper on campus. With 35,000

readers I produced full-page photo layouts and written stories on such topics as opening day of trout fishing season, a coal-fired electric power plant, and sailplane pilots of the Appalachian Mountains, subjects that still interest me today. Since then, some assignments that really got my adrenaline going include driving at night with the U.S. Border Patrol as they captured illegal Mexican immigrants, covering protests and riots during the 1990 Oka crisis near Montreal, and entering an arena of 15,000 people during COVID-19 to photograph President Trump arriving in a helicopter in western Pennsylvania. Because I adopted photography early in my life, the camera is like another appendage to my body: always with me and always ready as my eyes scan the world constantly for pictures to take.




From Belleville to Beijing By Abena Beloved Green

W hen

s h e is n o t

dancing for Universal Studios Beijing, Hannah Feltham likes to spend her time visiting tourist attractions with friends, scouting out new brunch spots, cooking and…dancing some more. “My friends and I found a studio here called Millennium Dance Studio that does lots of jazz and hip hop classes that we take. I like to choreograph so I teach lots of jazz and contemporary. We created a concept dance video recently to a song called ‘Feel it Still’ by Portugal the Man.”

PC: Caleb Edwards

A natural performer, Feltham has been dancing ballet since she was a toddler. She credits her very first dance teacher Kathleen Hicks for helping her develop her skill in those formative years. “She trained me from age three to nine years old. She saw something in me that allowed me to be the dancer I am today.” After age nine, Feltham’s family moved from Happy Valley-Goose Bay, Laborador to Belleville, Ont., where Feltham attended Quinte Ballet School of Canada (QBSC). 08

After graduating from QBSC at the age of 18, Feltham attended the Alberta School of Ballet and then moved to New York City. There, she trained at the Ailey School, a modern dance school, for three years. Feltham describes the challenge of facing multiple auditions and disappointments that come with the territory: “A lot of my graduating class - we all were sent out into the world to audition. For lots of people if you get cut, it can make or break you. You feel a blow to the ego. There were so many moments where I was sad about not getting my dream job, but it’s a matter of picking yourself back up, putting your makeup on and going to the next audition.” Feltham’s efforts finally paid off when she landed a major gig at Universal Studios Japan. She left New York for this new opportunity and worked as a dancer for two consecutive contracts. After two years abroad, Hannah decided to visit her family back in Canada. This is when plans changed. Feltham returned to Canada in March 2020 – just when borders closed

PC: Caleb Edwards

worldwide due to COVID-19. As a result, Feltham had to remain in Canada for the entire year even though she had only meant to visit. With no opportunities for performing on the horizon, Feltham had to figure out what to do with her time. Wanting to remain productive and in shape for dance, she began taking online classes taught in New York from her living room in Belleville. Years prior, Feltham had found time to train as a yoga and Pilates instructor and during COVID lockdowns, she created a business called Feltham Vibes where she taught classes online. She found other jobs as well: as a yoga instructor for Mindful Movements in Belleville and as a server at a local restaurant. While unable to dance professionally in 2020, Feltham was grateful for access to studio space at QBSC to rehearse and attend online auditions for jobs. Today, Feltham is working again as a dancer at Universal Studios Beijing. “I’ve never opened a theme park ever. It’s a big deal. It’s the biggest theme park in the world,” she says with a bright energy in her voice. Her family, while mostly in the medical field, has been a great supporter of her career. Feltham is also studying online marketing. She explains, “As a dancer you are your own business. You have to be your own agent. Even though I have the technique, skills and experiences, it may not be enough. You are constantly fighting for your job and having to prove yourself.” Thankfully she is exhilarated by the challenge and by the experiences she knows are on the other side. 09

Nathan Mahaffy

PC: Monique Dawes


PC: Artem Yukhymenko


Belleville Theatre Guild plans for the return of live theatre By Jennifer Shea

Probably one of the

saddest things a theatre actor, director or producer could hear is, “the community theatre is closed indefinitely.” Like numerous other public venues during a global pandemic, the Pinnacle Playhouse in Belleville, Ont., was forced to shutter and its proprietors, the Belleville

Theatre Guild (BTG), had to cancel performances at the end of the 2019/2020 season. Two plays, including the season-ending musical, Mamma Mia!, were cancelled after months of preparation. Luckily for theatre-goers, the lack of a public venue for plays did not derail the folks behind the Guild. They used technology

- first Zoom, then a combination of Zoom and YouTube - to bring one-act plays to life. “We started last August and we’ve done 18 plays – all written by local playwrights,” says Marvin Tucker, volunteer Director of Programs at the Guild. “We’d have up to 80 people joining us via Zoom. After a while, we put it on YouTube as well to make it a little bit more accessible.”

A Christmas Carol

Nathan Mahaffy


More than 50 local actors took part in the readings, many of whom had previous acting experience with the Guild. However, there were some new faces too. “We encouraged the idea of bringing new people in. I met some people who are really interested in doing some acting with us again who had never been involved with us before.” Some members of the online audience were also new to the BTG, and this bodes well for a (fingers-crossed) not-toodistant future date when the doors of the Pinnacle Playhouse re-open to guests. The Pinnacle Playhouse is owned and maintained by the City of Belleville, and the one up-side of the shutdown is that it has allowed some much-need renovations to be completed on the building. A new marquee was installed, funded by The Parrott Foundation. Exterior painting is underway, and a new ceiling and lighting in the meeting area (“green room”) of the theatre have been installed.

Since the reopening continues to unfold, it’s difficult to predict the plan for the 2021/22 season. However, Tucker and others have speculated about some possibilities. Says Tucker, “We’ve got all these one-act plays that we’ve done readings of online that we could turn around and put on stage. We could put those together really quickly if things open up.” The usual lead time for a full-length theatrical production is approximately two months. Given that there can be up to 50 volunteers involved in a single production (more for a musical), there’s a lot of organizing required. The sooner plays and performance dates are settled upon, the better. “Normally, we would have auditions for the first play of the (calendar) year at the end of October/early November,” says Tucker. “If, by the middle of October, we

At this point, the volunteer leadership at the Belleville Theatre Guild are considering options for their upcoming 70th season. The one decision that has been made is to proceed with the musical, Mamma Mia!, opening May 31, 2022. The Guild traditionally features five plays per season beginning in October and ending with a musical feature, typically in June.

knew that the theatre was going to be able to be open with full audiences, we could hold auditions, pull a cast together, have the rehearsals and schedule a full-length play early in 2022. But we just don’t know.” Meanwhile, the Guild relies on the theatre-loving community for financial support to cover essential costs including facility rental of storage/set-building/ rehearsal space and the purchase of rights to plays. Donations are always welcome through the “Donate” tab on the Guild’s website. The expression “The show must go on” features prominently in the minds of every Belleville Theatre Guild volunteer. They’re chomping at the bit to get back on stage in front of a live audience.

Little Shop of Horrors



one-act play reading

Fresh local sketch show Film

By Peter Paylor


time: I

could easily get hooked on Bell Fibe’s TV1. Dubbed “100% fresh locally-sourced television…made right in your backyard, by your community” with food and sports and DIY, along with travel and adventure and chilling true crime. It comes from places like Stittsville and Barrie, and soon it will be coming from here.

Belleville’s Eighty Twenty Studio have signed on to do a sketch comedy series for the network with a setting that is guaranteed to be 100% fresh and locally sourced. Anyone who is familiar with Belleville will recognize it immediately. The series is called “Stoney Lonesome.” Victor Cooper, one of the producers of the show, calls Stoney Lonesome an “ungentrified part of town.” “You can look at

that as a negative and say it’s this rough part of town, or you can look at it as the part of town that hasn’t been messed up yet. The show looks at it in both ways. It shows the good and the bad, but more often than not, it exposes the fact that the people from these different worlds – the people from Stoney Lonesome and the people from the rich parts of town – are not nearly as different as they think they are. For better or worse – and it’s usually for worse – their flaws are quite similar, and flaws are always more interesting than successes and triumphs, especially in comedy.” Cooper is happy to be working with TV1. “It’s a real, solid platform with a good relationship to start. You’re working with Bell. It’s not the pressure of writing 12 22-minute episodes with a team of 11 executive producers from whatever network. They’ve been an advocate for new, up-and-coming producers and directors. It’s a good way to start.”


What’s more, he’s happy to be working close to home. “ We’ve got everything we need here… Work with what you’ve got…and here we’ve got these not so built-up areas with lots of construction and mechanic shops right next to these

Then there’s the energy: “In Toronto we’d be just another shoot. Here, this is like a chance at something really, really cool that they’ve never done before. It’s a small industry here so when

they get to work on something like this it feels special and it feels exciting so it’s really easy to keep everyone’s energy up because they’re all just naturally excited. By the end of the fourth or fifth day, everyone’s a little bit sloggy, but you crack a couple of jokes and everyone’s back on top.” The idea for the series came from Kelly McKinney, Cooper’s long-time partner at Eighty Twenty Studio. “Every town


has a Stoney Lonesome,” says Cooper. “Kelly has this line: It’s the wrong side of the tracks, but the right side of life. That’s basically the show in a nutshell.” Viewers can expect to see Stoney Lonesome on Bell Fibe in spring of 2022. photography by Jacob Côté


beautiful, expensive parts of town, so why not capitalize on it and work with what we have. And we’ve got great actors here and great crew here. What they did over two days on the pilot was unreal.”

The journey from script to screen


B y An drew G ra y

Joseph Palmer has met

a challenge few filmmakers dare face. He produced a dramatic feature with a small crew and zero financing (yes, during a pandemic). Through My Eyes is an adventurous nail-biter set in rural Ontario, told from the perspective of an eight-year-old human trafficking survivor. The plot revolves around two lost friends, a cabin deep in the woods, and some fantastical turns. There is more than meets the eye in this exciting project due for completion later this year. For four guys from Quinte West it has been quite a journey from script to screen.

Through My Eyes was adapted from a short film Palmer (pg. 15, bottom right) made in the summer of 2019. Developing the long-form script involved several rewrites and sleepless nights. Palmer’s research into survivor stories was a glimpse into darkness that helped him appreciate the horror of human trafficking and inform the themes of hope and despair explored in the film. “One story really stuck into my mind about a young girl who was sold by her grandmother when she was 20,” says Palmer. “When she arrived she was locked into a room… It really got

to me because the girl wasn't kidnapped walking down the street. She was sold by her own flesh and blood.” Palmer spent months crafting the script every night after work and pulling it out every weekend. He sent the first draft to script evaluator Ula Jurecka. “I waited a few weeks eagerly hoping for her to tell me the script was good. That's not what happened,” says Palmer. “So I wrote it again, and again and again until finally the story began to work for the budget we had… To be honest the writing process was long, hard and confidence breaking.” Joel George, Dan Foote (pg. 15, bottom lef), Gavin Massey and Palmer comprised the core of the crew, which Palmer said made adhering to COVID protocols on the shoot fairly simple. “I think everyone who worked on this set was very hungry,” he says. “We all love making films and telling stories… Everyone on board I believe felt it was a great chance to showcase their skills in hopes of making a career creating films.”


It wasn’t through luck but perseverance that Palmer secured a cabin in the woods (after messaging over 200 Airbnb homeowners) in which to shoot - and warm up.

“We made the best of the situation, cracking jokes and making light of the cold. It also helped that we struck gold with the talent, both in front of and behind the camera,” he says. With a lightweight rig and the calm guiding hand of cinematographer Joel George the “run and gun shoot” was a complete success and a wild ride. “We would arrive on set the day of and would begin to plan where a scene would take place. If the location did not have a certain room or location we


would have to improvise….When everything goes well there is not a better feeling in the world!” For Palmer and his dedicated team Through My Eyes is surely only the beginning of the journey, but as he puts it: “If this never works out and this is the last film we ever create. I just hope that the people involved had fun. It was a dream come true to be a part of this and I am so thankful to create the memories we had.” photos provided by Joseph Palmer


Weather conditions can destroy low-budget films where scheduling is tight and comforts are few. During a two-day shoot in the winter of 2019 in which they had 20 pages of scenes to capture, the cold was so extreme that the gear would freeze and the team had to run for cover after every third take.

A light at the end of the decade-long tunnel


By Allen Steinberg

PC: Virginia Marie Photography

When Belleville-based

punk band Last Chance Marie was voted “Best Local Performer/s” by the Bay of Quinte Regional Marketing Board’s Best of the Bay contest earlier this year, they were absolutely floored. Not only have they not played a local show for quite a while due to the ongoing pandemic, but they weren’t even expecting to be on anybody’s radar.

“Honestly, I was really surprised to win the vote for best performers. It’s definitely not something we were shooting for at all,” says lead vocalist + guitarist Tayson Ingersoll (above, centre). “That almost makes it more special, being acknowledged for something you didn’t expect to have a shot at. Especially after so long of playing in the area and sometimes with nobody there in our early days. It’s crazy to see how far we came just by not quitting.” But to everybody else with a sensible grasp on the Quinte music scene, this win comes as no surprise. Since Last Chance Marie formed in 2009 with members Ingersoll, Tim Chatson (bass) and Josh Elliott (guitar), they've been the heart and soul of the edgier-side of local music; the lifeblood of a punk-rock scene that at times, was otherwise pretty dormant. For years, they’ve been abiding by their own rules, performing their emotional, hard-hitting songs at venues like The Core, The Belle Pub and Stix and Stones. Aside from these smaller-scale venues, they also jumped at the opportunity to open for Canadian pop-punk powerhouse Sum 41 at Empire 16

Rockfest in 2017. They’re probably one of the only bands in the region that has the guts to smash their guitars on stage. Last Chance Marie is oozing with passion, and people have been taking note. It’s an understatement to say that the band’s success did not happen overnight. Indeed, this recent recognition has arrived at the end of a nearly 12year long journey recording their debut LP. Facing constant setback after setback from producers, members moving across the country, member changes and miscellaneous life-things getting in the way, there were times where the band thought their record would never see the light of day. Song ideas they had from when they were teenagers were forced to stand the test of time as each member ascended into adulthood. It seemed like the years began to pile up atop of their musical careers. That all changed when they decided to start from scratch with Trenton, Ont.-based producer Todd Barriage, who helped speed along the process and inject life back into the veins of the punk-rockers.

Music “Man, I’ve spent so much of my life trying to put the album out. It’s weird that it’s in the rear-view now because I was looking forward to it for such a huge chunk of my actual time on Earth,” says Ingersoll. “When we decided to start fresh and record with Todd, everything just became so much smoother.” Ingersoll had more than a decade to ponder his past ideas and like any of us would, he started to doubt if they were still any good or not. While having all of this time to dissect his own songs did inevitably lead to him to be constantly questioning their quality, it also allowed him to grow as a person and thus allow the songs to be interpreted different ways as the years went by, he says: “I was thinking a lot about the album and I didnt know if it was as good as I once thought it was or if I liked a particular song as much as I used to. I really started to question everything. But as time passed, I began to appreciate it in new ways. And it means something different to me now than it did back then. It ended 17

up being really cool to have this growing experience with your own album.” Finally, in February of this year, they dropped their debut LP, This Is Just Sound. The album features one of their first ever written songs, the cathartic “This Is A Song, Not A Statement” which was only previously released on MySpace back in the late 2000s. Let that sink in for a second. Last Chance Marie is now working hard on their sophomore full-length record and is starting to plan shows for later this year. Ingersoll says that this new record will bring upon a brand new chapter for the band, and that alone is something to look forward to. “In the next few months, we're going to start recording our second album. As much as I love the first album, this new one is definitely a better representation of who our band is now. I'm sure it'll take less than 12 years this time.”

Justin Rutledge on coming home


By Allen Steinberg

When JUNO-award

winner Justin Rutledge would spend his childhood summers in Prince Edward County, he never imagined that he’d find himself back there decades later surrounded by a family of his own with a highly successful music career in his back pocket. Back in the day, you could find him and his family frequenting Sandbanks and boarding the Glenora Ferry to Adolphustown where they’d go camping for a month every summer. Now, Rutledge’s life has come fullcircle, as he finds himself living happily in the County for the past six years. As he revisits the places he once explored here when he was growing up, he sees everything with brand new eyes and draws inspiration from the surroundings that used to bring him and his family joy:

“In one way or another, you always come back to memories you made in your youth. There’s something that’s always appealed to me about the County. It’s a community that fosters and celebrates creativity. I’ve toured Canada several times and I think that the region is a very unique part of the entire country,” he says.

“I decided to write about Belleville because there is, to me, a beautiful quaintness to the city.” 18

Rutledge moved to Prince Edward County from Toronto with hopes of starting a quieter life with his wife, Sarah and son, Jack. He says that city living was “getting him down” and was in need of a change of scenery. The first song he wrote when he got here is titled “Allisonville” from his 2019 JUNOaward nominated record Passages. The song, named after the quaint Ontario town, illustrates how Rutledge allows his travels to play directly into his art. He says that this habit isn’t intentional, but that he owes a lot to the places he goes for feeding him inspiration, even if this process is subconscious: “Geography has always played a very important role in my songwriting and my creative process. I’ve never really asked myself why, but I think it’s just because

Music I’ve travelled so much. I sort of seek inspiration everywhere I go. I want to give the small towns some credit in my songs. For some reason, I think locating a song is really important to me.” Also from Passages, is the upbeat singa-long track “Belleville Breakup,” which again, pays homage to the Quinte region. Rutledge says that he and his family have always had an admiration for the small-scale city of Belleville: “I decided to write about Belleville because there is, to me, a beautiful quaintness to the city. I’ve met so many amazing people here. The move to the area was one of the best things I ever did. Growing up my family even had a dog named Quinte. We liked this area that much”

Although recently seeking out a life away from the hustle and bustle of Toronto, he can never truly buy a dull moment. When he’s not busy helping to raise Jack, he’s writing, recording or performing music. Before the COVID-19 pandemic struck, Rutledge was touring Canada frequently in support of Passages. In March of this year, he released his ninth studio album Islands which was recorded just before Ontario’s first lockdown. For this record, he tried something completely different. Instead of writing a batch of entirely new songs, he re-imagined some of his best material from his two-decade spanning discography. From these tracks include fan-favourite “Jelly Bean'' which is packed full of contagious nursery-rhyme melodies. Even though that song has been a staple in his setlist for as long as he can remember, it wasn’t previously 19

recorded as he felt like it never truly fit in with any of his past work. He hasn’t been able to give Islands a proper touring cycle just yet, but has been properly adapting to the times by live-streaming shows on Twitch and engaging with his fans through social media. Rutledge says that he plans to write and record another album this year before he goes on a cross-country tour again, as he and Sarah are expecting another baby this fall: “I want to give the music industry time to recover and finish up my new album. I’m going to be pretty busy for the rest of this year anyways with our second child expected in October. The album will come out next year, and I’ll get to touring after that.”

Expressions Juried Show: A celebration of the creative spirit By Fiona Campbell

Reimagine Indigenous Canoe Trails, Catherine Joyce

Fine Arts

The Quinte Arts

Council's biennial Expressions juried art show has been one of our signature events for over 20 years. This year it seemed even more special. While the third wave raged across Canada and around the world, artists and artisans, tasked with exploring the theme “Re-Imagine,” turned to their artistic practice to contemplate, explore and, ultimately, create. Despite the Parrott Gallery being closed due to the lockdown and rescheduling the show three times, by mid-July we were thrilled to (finally) receive such a fine calibre of work in a variety of media

from a wide cross-section of Quintebased artists, including: painters, photographers, woodworkers, sculptors, metal workers, textile artists, folk artists and mixed media artists.

is alive and well, in spite of this difficult period. It was easy to feel the enthusiasm in the greatly diverse subject matter, style and ways of working and the originality that was evident.

Esteemed jurors Valerie Kent (painter) and Bill Reddick (ceramic artist) agreed it was an exceptional collection of art. “This first major art exhibit after the lockdowns was a wonder and a delight,” says Kent. “The artists who submitted paintings and crafts offered mature and refined work, as though during the period of restrictions there was ignited their will to work hard to create art that

Out of 44 artists and over 90 submissions, they selected three winners, as well as seven honourable mentions.

Regeneration, Peter Bates


“It was not easy to select for the Expressions show when there were so many fine art works,” says Kent. “The field of artists showed their thoughtfulness and were all captivating in their own right.” Juror’s Choice: Peter Bates, Regeneration “Regeneration shows mastery of execution. It has a lovely sense of depth and perception. There is beautiful light in the background and in the foreground. Its asymmetry is pleasing, as is its organic patterning. It has an s-shaped composition, a landscape that juxtaposes the complementary colours which make the whole vibrate. It evokes many interpretations with its motion, balance and tension. It is like a well-crafted piece of music.” Juror’s Choice: Michelle Hutchinson, Voices “Voices is loosely painted, but tightly conceived. It has an atmospheric quality moving into the distance as if it is being looked at from the landscape

Discovering the Garden, Joanne Rich

Fine Arts

above. Colours are repeated around the picture plane making it both abstract yet it has an inherent representational feel, much as a landscape might, with its sky, horizon and foliage. It knows restraint in its calligraphy, has a nice balance and unique colour choices. It is textural and the dark tonalities contrast to create that sense of depth. It speaks a creative language.” Craft Ontario Community: Joanne Rich, Discovering the Garden “It is a unique interpretation with its organic forms teased out of nature, its masterful competency working with the materials and the way the paper is created to highlight the shapes. It may appear as a shell, as sand dunes, as pathways of light. The branches are critical as escaped freedom expressed by the freed branches that keep it from being an enclosed space. In fact, it is suggestive of more space. It is foraged material: earthy, naturally pigmented and of handmade papers. It has originality of idea and concept, and is so engaging. It is quiet and yet, it pulls you in.” The People’s Choice Award went to Catherine Joyce for her work Reimagine Indigenous Canoe Trails. Praise from visitors to the gallery (both in-person and online) included: “I found myself lost in the painting. The lines where the sky meets the water are incredibly subtle, yet have depth. I can picture myself on the sand looking out at the horizon, peacefully” and “The visual effects of the water ripping that you achieved are ‘chilling’!” Honorable mentions went to: Trevor O. Brant (United We Stand), Sabrina Jovic (Awakening Movement 1), Tom Ashbourne (Elation), James Walt (Forever Blue), Rachel Weagant (My Lows), Wanda Elliott (The Cove), and Susan Lorenzen (The Sum). Thank you to acting curator Wendy Rayson-Kerr and her staff at the Parrott Gallery for all their help hosting this show. 21

Voices, Michelle Hutchinson

Fine Arts

Napanee’s Pallet’able Art Project By Ardith Racey

Caring for Each Other, Jessica Doner

About four years

ago, Tim Nimigan, vice-chair of the Greater Napanee Arts & Culture Advisory Committee, began to research public art initiatives and came upon the idea of using industrial pallets or ‘skids’ as artist’s palettes. Nimigan decided to “produce one and show people how it could be done.” The rest is history.

Splash II by Michelle Hutchinson, located by The Waterfront River Pub & Terrace, is an abstract rendering of “the dance of light and water.” The pallets also tell an amazing story about the citizens of Napanee - both through the designs and images depicted by the artists, as well as the creativity and co-operation of artists, sponsors, and officials who have

The works showcase a wide range of themes and styles that reflect Napanee’s history, wildlife, nature, as well as cultural and social issues, street scenes, and abstract art. For example, Festivities of the Riverfront by Austin Dunhm (designed by Nimigan) is located in Conservation Park and depicts all of the “activities associated with the now combined Riverfront Festival and Multicultural Festival.”

Eat Local, Peggy Collins

Eat Local by Peggy Collins is located in the downtown area and expresses gratitude for locally grown food. 22

Splash II, Michelle Hutchinson

made the project such a success. Each work has a sponsoring business, organization or family, and had to be approved by the Arts and Culture committee. A few of the 30 pallet’able projects are tributes to individuals, such as the one titled Caring for Each Other that is in honour of Richard Atkinson, “who used to feed the geese,” says Nimigan.

Canada 150 - Lending a Hand, Tim Nimigan & Culture Days Participants

Napanee’s thirtieth and final art installation is painted on a wooden skid and titled Moon’s Next Adventure, by Jessica Doner. It depicts Moon, John Herzog’s dog, who passed away recently. “For years, Herzog, a photographer in a wheelchair, could be seen on the streets in Napanee with Moon, who walked ahead unleashed and always carried a Tim Horton’s cup,” says Nimigan. Sondra Elliott, the owner of Pet Panache, came up with the idea to sponsor a pallet when Moon passed away as a surprise for Herzog. It was installed in front of the downtown Tim Horton’s on July 19. You can find 29 similar artworks scattered throughout Napanee’s downtown, various parks and along the Napanee River Trail. The installations are lovely additions to the picturesque trails and parks, given that the intent was to create a walking tour. There’s an interactive online map with images and locations of all of the pieces, as well as artists’ statements of intent. 23

Pallet’able Art is a clever play on words, but the recent completion of the project is impressive and inspiring. Each of the installations has been a labour of love. But what is truly wonderful about this project is the fact that so many local artists have their ideas and works featured for public display. And it’s just a stroll away. Palatable, indeed.

Moon's Next Adventure, Jessica Doner

Fine Arts

Elements of Springside, Tim Nimigan

Deliberations of a creative mind Fine Arts

By Lin Parkin

Dream Storm

On a warm, sunny

afternoon, I sit across from 23-year-old artist Briana Godden. We are sipping wine on a patio along the Trent River when she shows me a booklet she’s been working on called the Prince Edward County Sketchbook Project. “I chose the theme of duality,” she says. Vibrant paintings and sketches convey the beauty of nature combined with hard lined, man-made things.


Godden explains: “It’s a juxtaposition of meaning. A marriage between two sides. Life and death, beauty and decay, dark and light, good and evil. I really love duality – that’s what this project is all about.” She also shows me pictures of the massive collection of artwork she’s been creating during the pandemic. Over 30 completed paintings are stacked against walls and stored in closets. The imagery is as wide-ranging as is her media usage. “I’m not an illustrator. I’m not a painter. I’m not a mixed-media artist. I’m not a collage artist. I’m not a sculptor. I’m not a ‘this’ or a ‘that.’ I’m all those things.” She first discovered a passion for art when she was about 12 years old. “I willy-nilly asked my mom for a sketch book one day because I had been doodling in class and drawing self-insert characters [when an artist put themself into a story as a character] for things like anime and manga or Star Wars anything sci-fi–fantasy related. I would do these self-insert characters to be a part of that world.” 24

As she got older, she began exploring her talent further with representationalism through realism. Friends helped along the way. She says, “I found a good body of geeks in high school, and they encouraged me to be my normal crazy self in the art room and I started diving into it in full force.”

“I’ve been finding a lot of success in my own backyard. We’re fortunate to live in a spot that’s got so much support for the arts right here.” After high school, Godden pressed on with art. “I felt like that was my natural path. I think some people know what they’re meant to do, and to me, I knew that art should be something I’m pursuing.” She earned a Certificate in Pre-Animation and Illustration at Algonquin College in 2017. In the same

year, she received her Painting and Drawing Certificate from Haliburton School of Art and Design, where she also earned a Digital Image Design Certificate in 2019. Godden has paved her way in the local arts community by being open to and charging forward with every opportunity she has found. She joined the Prince Edward County Arts Council (PECAC), the Quinte Arts Council, the Eastern Central Ontario Arts Association, and the Belleville Arts Association. Through these connections she has showcased her work at the Parrot Gallery, including this year’s Spring Sentiments and Expressions shows. Her paintings are also featured at the Belleville Arts Association and Georgina Arts Centre in Sutton, Ont. Realizing that she didn’t need a BFA or MFA to be a successful commercial artist, she says, “I’ve been finding a lot of success in my own backyard. We’re fortunate to live in a spot that’s got so much support for the arts right here.” Godden is honoured to be full-time permanent member artist at Gallery

121 in Belleville. The morning of our interview, she was delighted to learn one of her paintings had sold. She exclaims; “Oh my gosh! It feels insane. Everything is happening so quickly, and it’s great. It is such a confirmation from the Universe that everything is falling into place.” On what’s next for Godden, she explains a personal challenge project she participates in called Inktober. Millions of artists around the globe create new pieces everyday for the entire month of October, posting it to their socials each day using the hashtag #inktober. “I have been doing it for about four years. The first couple years I completed maybe three or four days but last year I did all 31 days.” She aims to reach that benchmark again this year. Godden is also launching a print business this year in partnership with J B Print Solutions and Shopify. People will be able to purchase limited edition prints, signed, with a letter of authenticity. “My prints will be available on T-shirts, pillowcases, mugs – virtually anything you can think of. It will make my art accessible to people who are maybe on a budget or can’t afford a larger piece or the original.” 25

Most recently, she was accepted to the PECAC Armoury Residency Program for the month of September 2021, where her art focus will be on illustrative elements and contemporary paint applications on raw canvas, with the theme dream my symbology. On what drives her to do what she does, Godden pauses for thought. “I just like to make things that look really cool. It's the deliberations of a creative mind at work.”

Self Portrrait

Fine Arts


A happy journey into the macabre Fine Arts

By Lin Parkin

R ac hel



(a.k.a.; Rache, Ray or Giggles) is a 35-year-old visual artist from Napanee, Ont., who’s creating some interesting works of art using an unusual media.

“I see something, instantly want to try it, and get hyper focused on the craft. Only to see some thing else inspiring and leap at it head first. I’ve always been that way.” “I love baking and the first pie I created with the hand showing the ‘devil horns’ was just something silly I sculpted out of leftover pie dough to surprise my boyfriend

Rasp-bury Pie

on a whim. I’m always creating stuff for him and my children (Maddox, 15, and Charlotte, 13) to make them smile or laugh.” From this she was inspired to bake more pies using portraits of horror movie characters. “My family literally ate pie every day for months and months while I tried perfecting the skill – poor them, eh,” she laughs. Weagant finds the pictures she wants to use and then paints the portraits freehand, using a food safe paint brush, vanilla extract, and gel food coloring.

To hone her portrait skills, she inflicted a challenge on herself, coined the “20 days of serial killer portraits.” She’s also exploring painting with water-soluble graphite and dabbles in horror SFX makeup. Air dry clay sculpted paintings and tattooing are other artforms she wants to try her hand at some day. The macabre theme flows into everyday life too. She maintains a “gothic garden” with a delightful array of beautiful black flowers. “I live in a home where the whole décor is

Her pies have received accolades from a few celebrities on Instagram, spurring her passion on even more. “Bill Moseley (I’m a huge fan of his) liked some of my work and I cried. Like full out sobbed like a 13-year-old girl at a Bieber concert.” With a self-diagnosis of “Artist ADD,” Weagant enjoys jumping around from one medium to the next: “I see something, instantly want to try it, and get hyper focused on the craft. Only to see something else inspiring and leap at it headfirst. I’ve always been that way.” 26

Self Portrait

all horror movie themed in one way or another,” she says. When asked what draws her to the darker side of things, Weagant laughs. “That’s a question my parents and therapists have been asking for years! Kidding. I have ALWAYS and I mean always been drawn to anatomy, death, and gore. I would have to say I love the emotion behind it, and I am captivated by it being alternative.” Weagant grew up in Roslin, Ont., with parents Jill and Dennis and her older

brother Luke. “Despite what my artwork depicts I had a very great upbringing. My entire family is all very creative and artistic in many ways,” she explains. “My parents have been incredibly supportive of my art throughout the years, even though what I drew inspiration from may have concerned them at times,” she laughs. “But how thankful I am for them because I don’t think I would be creating today if it wasn’t for them cheering me on to do whatever I wanted to do – bleeding skull sketches and all! It’s the “shock and awe” of it that she’s drawn to. “I think it’s wonderful that someone can draw or paint, let’s say, ‘something deceased’ and make it look beautiful but, at the same time, you feel disturbed by it and like you shouldn’t be looking at it. The emotional conflict the audience experiences is thrilling to me.”

Creative Monstrosities Replica

Movies like House of 1,000 Corpses and The Devil’s Rejects, Tim Burton films, and her brother’s comic book creations were early inspirations into 27

My Lows

the horror genre. A grade school teacher, Ms. Preston, particularly inspired her as a kid and gave her the confidence to keep pursuing art. A pivotal experience was attending the Arts Program at Centennial Secondary School in Belleville, Ont. “It was a fantastic program to be a part of because it allowed me to take an over abundance of arts programs throughout my teen years and exposed me to all different styles. It’s wonderful to see that the program is still running, thriving, and students are still producing some fantastic work.” To aspiring artists, Weagant says, “Do not entertain what others suggest you focus on artistically – you do you! If you like painting animals and scenery – paint animals and scenery. If you like sketching feet – sketch feet! If you like horror movies – sketch the horror images you like. Your art is your art! Use as many mediums as you want – try them all.” IG @screamandsugarpies

Fine Arts


M ontreal - based

novelist and playwright Marianne Ackerman is no stranger to the Bay of Quinte Region. Born and raised on a farm in Prince Edward County and educated at Nicholson Catholic College in Belleville, Ont., Ackerman and her partner Gwyn Campbell have spent the past seven summers rebuilding an old stone house in the County.


Her creative project when she’s here goes back to when she studied Susanna Moodie’s Roughing it in the Bush back in high school and learned that Moodie’s primary stone house was on Bridge Street in Belleville. Ackerman re-reads the book every time she comes back. “It’s such a rich book. It’s way ahead of its time,” says Ackerman. “Now that we are living in very, I would say, a neo-colonial age of Canadian culture, [when] the nationalist fervour of Canadian culture is now superseded by big box literature, I think the real heart of Canadian culture is once again back in the wilderness and back in small towns where creativity can blossom because people want to work. So, Moodie is, to me, very, very relevant.” Ackerman has spent the past four summers writing a stage adaptation of Moodie’s book, workshopping the script with local actors. She’s been more than

Belleville: The Susanna Moodie town By Peter Paylor

impressed by the talent we have here in the Quinte Region. “Susanna Moodie has become my kind of mission and alter-ego,” says Ackerman. “I identify very much with her. I’m very, very heartened that through this terrible winter, when we’re all tenderized by suffering, that there’s some future for this play because I think it will speak to people who have


been through something. I think that Belleville could do so much with Susanna Moodie. This could be the Susanna Moodie town. Take it on. It’s your story.” Ackerman speaks about a “wonderful, tragic passage” in Roughing it in the Bush that expresses Moodie’s thoughts on Indigenous people: “Moodie says


that sadly, looking at their plight and the way they were being treated by the government, one can only predict that they will be lost, they will disappear, that is the policy that she sees in action at the time. Yes, now we know that to be true, that was where that policy was going.” She also credits Moodie for her tenacity and clear-sightedness to report what she saw: “It’s a testament. We have so little of that kind of information about what it was like on every level back then.” Ackerman also sees parallels with what we’re going through now with COVID-19. “Susanna Moodie’s story is a story of incredible hardship. Collective hardship. Personal hardship. What we’ve been through, what we’re still going through is hardship. To be locked away from friends…that’s Moodie’s story. She was alone in the bush and she fought with people and people moved away and she felt even worse. Isolation is her theme.”

Marianne Letitia Ackerman (born in Belleville, Ont., 1952) is a Canadian novelist, playwright, and journalist. She currently lives in Montreal.


Showcasing the County through her writing By Kiki Carr


Prince Edward County

has been an inspiration to many writers. For Joy Goddard, with her husband Daniel Pike, she captured this spark in The Keepers, her newest book; an upmarket contemporary fiction steeped in mystery and love. It’s the story of financially struggling Beth who lives on her family’s vineyard with her granddad and aunt in the old farmhouse, her troubled son Alexandre, and a writer from New York named Richard who is living in Beth’s guest house for the summer. This emotional read takes you

through a journey of relationships, the triumphs and pitfalls of running a winery, mixed in with a dead body found on the property. It’s the perfect story to keep you turning the pages. Goddard wrote this novel with her husband, who assisted in research and preparation. Together, they visited wineries, learned about the industry and explored the surroundings. “As a proud Canadian, I love to showcase the beauty of the country through

my writing, and what better way than to take readers on a tour of Prince Edward County,” says Goddard. “It’s a foodie’s dream, a wine lover’s first stop. But I’m drawn just as much to the people, especially the farmers, who are the keepers of the land.” Goddard is a retired teacher and now full-time writer who offers writing workshops and editing services. Most of her days start in her home office with the door closed at 8:00 am. The business of being an author

This emotional read takes you through a journey of relationships, the triumphs and pitfalls of running a winery, mixed in with a dead body found on the property.


In her author’s note Goddard writes that if she could help “just one ‘Alexandre’ find his voice, my efforts would be well worth it.” Her goal is for her readers to find faith in the message: if society lifted the stigma surrounding mental illness, sufferers would seek help and find hope.”

“Teenagers are notorious for hiding their feelings from adults for many reasons. They are afraid of getting punished for their actions. They are ashamed of themselves. They believe they are invincible. They are asserting their independence. As a teacher, I couldn’t count the times I heard parents say to me: Who is this kid? I don’t know him or her anymore,” says Goddard. “It is our responsibility as a society—as each other’s keeper—to take the shame from mental illness so that our kids will reach out when they need help before it’s too late.”


Now that The Keepers is on bookshelves (found at Books and Co. in Picton, and available on Amazon in eBook and paperback), Goodard is ready for her next adventure. She is currently working on a non-fiction book on “How to write a novel” to help aspiring writers get started. She’s also planning future writing workshops throughout Quinte and Prince Edward County.


is not always all about writing, and sometimes involves working on her blog, doing office work, editing, and preparing for teaching.

David Alexander’s new sci-fi novel Literary

By Jennifer Shea

PC: Adam Gray


Alexander is

a quiet, unassuming man. A retired Belleville, Ont., art teacher who is an avid sketch artist and painter, Alexander has recently been pursuing creative writing.

Alexander self-published his first novel, the science fiction Song of the Wayzender (Amazon/Kindle) in 2020. What began as a poem evolved into a 143-page book that Alexander sees as the first of a series (he has already started writing the follow-up). One of Alexander’s artworks is featured as the cover for the Kindle edition of his book.

Song of the Wayzender features a female lead character, Amelia, who captains a starship. She accidentally becomes involved with an off-world miner who works in the asteroid belt (Carver); they meet when she saves his life. Another key character is a centaur, an alien in disguise. His job is to cultivate humans to become part of a larger interstellar organization. “He plants these clues which are actually little bronze figurines. They have an extra attachment to them that suggests they fit into some kind of puzzle. The figurines are set like little breadcrumbs in different places for Amelia and Carver to find. Eventually, they put them together and form the wayzender,” says Alexander. 32

The wayzender is a vehicle that not only transports its passengers through space, but also through time. The book’s title was drawn from the vehicle’s complex vibrations when in motion that are perceived as sublime music to human ears. “I’m not a musician,” says Alexander, “but when I hear beautiful music, it transports me to another place. It transcends time and space.” Interestingly, Alexander does not illustrate the wayzender in his book; it’s up to the reader’s imagination to determine what the vehicle looks like. Alexander’s book is not without its elements of conflict. The “baddie” is a powerful figure named Admiral Pierce, a retired leader of the space force who has been infected by a malevolent being that results in him becoming a puppet to the alien race known as the Cordovans. They bend him to their will and for their purposes. He has an ally, Scalper, who is the head of a big crime syndicate in the asteroid belt. A variety of interesting alien creatures also figure prominently in Alexander’s book.

Alexander is an avid reader of science fiction and he has been influenced by authors Arthur C. Clarke and Frank Herbert. Alexander gained some experience navigating the world of selfpublishing previously when he wrote and published a children’s book. Asked about his choice of a female protagonist

for Song of the Wayzender, Alexander commented that he and his wife had a grand niece live with them for four years while attending Albert College as a day student, and some of her character traits influenced those of the fictional Amelia. His underlying principles when writing Song of the Wayzender were largely based on his personal philosophy: “I tried to base it on certain truths, some universal ideas that perhaps aren’t fully appreciated and they should be: loyalty, truth-telling, and overcoming jealousy and passion.” A Drawing and Painting graduate of the Ontario College of Art (OCAD) and the University of Toronto, Alexander originally hails from Windsor, Ont. “Very early on, I had an idea that I wanted to be a book illustration artist. I went through the drawing/painting stream at OCAD and got into that. Then I did some freelance work in teaching.” The latter is what led to his long career as an art teacher. 33

PC: Adam Gray

For several years, David was a participating artist fellow of the Patmos Workshop and Gallery, and later the Alpha Gallery, exhibiting throughout southern Ontario. He is an active member of the co-operative Gallery One-Twenty-One and can often be found welcoming guests as a volunteer at the Gallery.


Low Tide, David Alexander


RCI Studios offers foundry services to artists By Jennifer Shea







International (RCI) is a 34-year-old Trenton, Ont.-based business that has made a name for itself as a premier global preserver and manufacturer of museum artifacts and exhibits. Their clientele sounds like a “who’s who” of the museum world: the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, The Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) and the Natural History Museum in London, England, to name a few. Museum exhibit work continues to be the main focus of RCI’s business, according to general manager Matt Fair: “Traditionally, it was cast dinosaurs, but since probably 2005, it has really started to shift towards doing fossil mounts. We go in and do complete restorations of entire collections.” This summer, a new business focus has emerged. With the acquisition of aluminum casting equipment and related staff from a foundry in Brighton, RCI has launched “RCI Studios.” RCI’s world-class foundry can create resin, bronze and

now aluminum castings, offering a local option for artists and galleries looking to recreate pieces in these materials. “There are two different approaches,” explains Fair. “If they’re going to enlarge it or reduce it, we’ll do a 3D scan of it to create a model. We then carve it on our CNC (laser cutting) machine if it’s really big, or if it’s smaller, we can print it in our 3D printers (using plastic or plaster).” The second option is traditional molding of the sculpture for reproduction in bronze or aluminum. Artists can also have their work cast by RCI Studios in glass fibre, reinforced concrete or composites, epoxy, polyester, or polyurethane. One of the new entity’s first jobs has been to produce thousands of aluminum sculptures for various clients including the ROM for its whale exhibit that opened in mid-July. You can find these RCI Studios creations for sale in the ROM gift shop. Interestingly, you’ll also find original whale skeletons in the ROM that were 36

articulated at RCI in Trenton. The RCI team has collected approximately 11 whales for the museum. Their skeletons are removed and cleaned on-site at RCI then reassembled for mounting at the ROM. When traditional molding is used for an artist’s sculpture, RCI Studios will take a room temperature vulcanized silicone mold, put a parting wall on it, paint half,

Heritage take the parting wall off, then paint the other half with a separator between the two layers of rubber. Next, they will make a hard mold (“mother mold”) that holds the form/shape of the piece, put the rubber in and do a cast of that. Says Fair, “We can do that in a composite or, if we’re doing bronze, we would create a wax that would go into a ceramic shell to make a mold. We burn the wax out, then the ceramic shell is put in a kiln and heated to about 1700 degrees Fahrenheit. We melt our bronze in the furnace, pour that into the ceramic shell. Then we break the ceramic shell off once it cools and out comes the bronze piece for finishing.”

RCI’s foundry has actually been part of the company since the early 2000s and was originally used to create bronzes for museums. The foundry was shut down around 2014 to make space for a big contract with the Smithsonian. While the newly acquired aluminum casting equipment was being installed, the original bronze foundry was re-installed. If the

It's not surprising that a collaboration with community artists is RCI’s latest initiative, given that a large number of the over 40 employees have artistic training and experience. A former Fine Arts student himself, Fair happened to be attending another artist’s exhibit and took the opportunity to ask the attendees (some of whom were QAC members) if there would be any interest in accessing a local foundry; the response was unanimously positive. 37

output of RCI Studios is anything like RCI as a whole, we can look forward to seeing some very creative results.

All photos by Mike Gaudaur (pg.4), except for dino "Sue" by Field Museum, Chicago, IL

Bursary recipients one year later By QAC Team

It has been a challenging time for

Arts Education

artists to navigate the world during the pandemic, but especially for next generation artists beginning the first year of post secondary arts education. Instead of classrooms, studios and lecture halls filled with excited freshmen experiencing their first year away from home, students faced the brave new world largely online. Fortunately, as we’ve seen over and over again, artists are adaptable and turn to creativity to overcome challenges. Ezra Schell, Susan Richardson Bursary Award “I wasn’t quite sure what to expect entering a music school amidst a global pandemic, because a jazz performance program at the University of Toronto delivered almost entirely through zoom. It was to my surprise, however, that this first year was still an enjoyable one. I had the opportunity to play with many talented musicians in the program, as well as study with acclaimed drummer and composer Ethan Ardelli. The UofT jazz program is a tight-knit community of musicians, and despite not being able to meet all of them due to pandemic restrictions, I have still connected with several people that I look forward to continuing growing and playing music with. Although COVID-19 has brought us unprecedented challenges, these setbacks have allowed me to focus on my own musical growth more than ever.” Adey Singer, Elaine A. Small and QAC Student Arts Bursary awards “It was never my plan to take a gap year after high school. I waited until August to get a deferral because I still hoped that things might get better. They didn’t, so I stayed home. Seeing everyone else getting to start their post-secondary education made me question if I was doing the right thing; I’ve been dreaming of studying art since I was a kid. Was it the right choice or the wrong one? Either way, it was the one I made, and things have turned out just fine. This fall I’m going to Concordia to study studio arts. Now feels like déjà vu from last spring. Because it’s my second time around, I know what I’m doing. Second time applying for residence. Second time registering for my classes. And in September, first time being a university student.” 38

As a creative, I found the courses to be much more effective for my learning style, having short lectures and then studio time to work on what we were just taught. I learnt to translate my traditional arts skills in digital mediums such Adobe Indesign and Photoshop. Through classes, I’ve discovered a new love for photography and photo editing. It overall has been an enriching year full of new experiences. I am looking forward to the next school year on campus and I’m so grateful to the QAC for having lessened the financial burden so that I can continue schooling.” Julia Gorrell, Hugh P. O’Neil Arts Bursary Award “Spending my first year of school stuck at home and working from my attic was not the experience I was anticipating. I turned to creating to let out the emotions, frustrations, and worries of spending this year in a pandemic, and as an artist, creator, and person I have flourished. The time I’ve been able to spend with myself, the tools I am so grateful to have been able to access. Reflecting on my first year of post-secondary, I am so glad I was able to attend school, now more than ever. Drawing and painting gave me not only an outlet but a purpose. My classes gave me an avenue to explore and further my practice, both technically and conceptually. Having a group of like-minded creatives to bounce ideas off of and connect with was the key benefit of this experience, though. I feel grateful to have been able to turn to my online classes and events which offered me the chance to learn, socialize, and feel human. As our vaccine rollout continues and our future looks brighter, I can not only appreciate this experience for what it has been but also look forward to my next three years of school.” 39

Arts Education

Kate Roberts, Hugh P. O’Neil Arts Bursary Award “It has been a very unconventional school year to say the least with COVID greatly impacting how courses were delivered. Although I had to make many adjustments to effectively work with online courses, I definitely feel like I learnt a lot of new skills and strengthened ones already existing. My professors were wonderful teachers and very attentive to making sure we fully grasp the content being taught. I felt as though I thrived with assignments being more hands on.

Belleville-based illustrator

Carl Wiens has enjoyed a successful career spanning more than 30 years, producing conceptual illustration for books, newspapers and magazines. He has been published in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Time, Forbes, Barron's Weekly and Esquire. Locally, you can find his design and artwork featured on Signal Brewery’s signs and labels. He also creates prints and paintings and has had several gallery shows in the area. Carl has a number of children’s books including the recently published ’Science of Song’ for KidsCan Press, written by Alan Cross. In addition to his art, Carl teaches science and technology-based illustration at Sheridan College where he is continually inspired by the dedication and creativity of the next generation of illustrators. Carl finds his inspiration in science and nature and is fascinated by robots, insects and exoplanets. This piece was inspired by the film “The Current War” about the race to electrify cities in the 19th century. @carlwiens

Content created in collaboration with the Bay of Quinte Regional Marketing Board