Six hundred and twenty-five

Photo shoots

I’ve had the pleasant surprise of being asked to take photos for three different people over the past week.  Isn’t the saying that things always come in threes?  One was a friend asking me to take her headshot for her blog, which has been postponed, but hopefully will happen in a couple of weeks.  The second was two friends making holiday wine and wanting to put a silly photo of themselves on the label to give away as gifts.  Finally, another artist friend of mine who creates beautiful fascinators (head pieces, think British royalty at the races) wanting me to take photos for her holiday catalogue.  I love the experience and am enjoying helping my friends.  I actually think I might be getting the hang of this photography thing.  Or at least I’m learning as I go.  I wanted to share a few of my favourites this week.

The fascinators in the first group of photos are made by the talented Asia Vickovic.  She sells these, as well as custom pieces.  If you are interested in more information, or getting one of these beautiful headpieces for your New Years Eve party, you can contact her at:, or visit her facebook page at:  Makeup by Adrianne Gagnon.  Photos by yours truly, Lindsay Schwietz.


Photo by Lindsay Schwietz. Fascinator by Asia Vickovic. Model Colleen Doyle.


Photo by Lindsay Schwietz. Fascinator by Asia Vickovic. Model Charlotte West.


Photo by Lindsay Schwietz. Fascinator by Asia Vickovic. Model Tamara Cooke.


Photo by Lindsay Schwietz. Fascinator by Asia Vickovic. Model Adrianne Gagnon.

And one just for fun!  How could we resist having Gordon be one of our models, too?


Photo by Lindsay Schwietz. Fascinator by Asia Vickovic. Model Gordon.

These last two are from the holiday wine bottle photo shoot with Colleen Doyle and Nicki Ramjass:



Both photo shoots were lots of fun.  Thanks to everyone involved.

Next week I will be away at my cousin’s wedding and then a little trip with my mother, so will be blogging at the end of the week instead of Wednesday.  Hopefully I’ll have some more fun photos from our trip!

Three hundred and fifty-two

“Art of art”

There’s something so amazing about a combination of art and dance.  It takes a true artist to be able to capture the passion and movement of dance in a static art form.  A skill I didn’t seem to master during art month.  This carving is so beautiful and captivating.

Trying to photograph art is an interesting challenge.  Do you make it your own art (art of art of art, or photograph of art of dance) or do you let it stand on its own?

Day sixty-three

The best friend date

Some of you might think that this is a cop out, to put my best friend as my first date.  But I don’t think so.  My best relationships have been with people I was already friends with.  Yes, you do run the risk of ruining the friendship.  But you also have the potential for it to be the best relationship you ever had.  You already know you love them.  You know you get along.  You know all about them and you feel comfortable with who they are.  There are no secrets.  You don’t have to spend your first date asking boring questions like “where did you grow up?” and “what do you like to do?”, because you already know the answers.  You can talk about interesting topics, have fun, enjoy each others company.  But I guess the big question is: is a really great friendship worth the risk?

It was a lovely evening out with the best friend that went into the wee hours of the morning.  He chose the place.  He even insisted on paying, even though we usually split everything.  He treated me like a lady (although did tease me constantly).  My headache this morning attests to the amount of wine we drank.  I had a lot of fun.  (I know, I bet you wanted more juicy details than that.  There will be juicy details on other dates, don’t you worry!)


Having an odd schedule makes dating especially hard.  No one wants to go on a date on a Monday night.  Nine-to-fivers don’t think it’s a good night for a date.  Shift-workers want to relax after a long weekend or are working.  I did have a date planned that bailed on me, then another potential date that couldn’t do it, so I sent the task to a friend of mine with lots of contacts and five minutes later, a date for tonight!  And a pretty interesting one at that.  He’s going to blog about me blogging about him.  And pick me from a party with all my workmates there.  And joked about showing up with a parrot on his shoulder and speaking with a Mexican accent.  Should be fun!

The Flash Mob

For those of you who followed me through art month, below is my video of a few short clips of the dance.  I can’t seem to find the official video yet (will post that as soon as I can find it), but they did say we could post on Monday, so here’s my take on the experience:

International Dance Day Flash Mob
Metro Hall Square, Toronto
April 29th, 2011
Organized by the national Ballet School
Choreographed by  Matjash Mrozewski
Filming by Nico Szidiropulosz
Editing by Lindsay Schwietz


Official video posted:

Day sixty-one

The end of 30 Days of Art!

I’m happy and sad for my month of art to be over.  I’ve seen and taken part in a lot of interesting things I probably wouldn’t have found the time to do if I wasn’t doing this experiment.  I’ve discovered some new areas of interest that I’d like to pursue – like charcoal drawing, knitting, and stop motion animation.  I’ve participated in some fascinating political art events because my art month happened to fall in the lead up to the Canadian federal election.  I was even asked to write a blog post about my experiences writing about art during the time of election for the Department of Culture (read it here). Thank you to everyone who took the time to teach me a skill, or join me on an art expedition, or learn alongside me.

Recap of the month

What I covered during art month and links to the posts about the topic: colouringoil pastelsstill life charcoal drawing,knittingart therapypoetry, double bassexperimental film artclay modeling and wheel,  guitarTim Burton exhibitsewing,art and politicsjewellery makingspontaneous artphotographytheatreart on a budgettheatre-in-developmentconcert,salsadesignreligious artthe Wrecking Ballstop motion animationwrought iron, flash mob.

What did I learn?

I’ve been stressed about finding time to do everything I wanted to, cover every topic of art I could, really enjoy myself, and still find time to blog about it.  Writing about art is so hard because it is more about the experience than the description of it.  I was warned by a friend that 30 Days of Art would be one of the hardest months to do.  I didn’t believe it, as I love art, but it is so true.  I was talking to this friend the other day, and after an “I told you so” from him, we talked about all the positives I got out of it.  This month has opened my creative brain to help me get through the next ten months.  It put me out of my comfort zone on numerous occasions, and forced me to reveal my lack of skill in certain areas, but also my willingness to try them nonetheless.  I am more confident that I can make it through this year having made it through this month.

Where I will go from here with Art?

My friend recently lent me The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron, a best-selling book on how to discover and recover your creative self.  It’s a twelve-week course that allows you to open up to your own creativity.  I’ve only started reading it, and although it is pretty ‘hippy-skippy’ (as my friend puts it), I think a lot of the exercises are really useful and connected to some of the things I learned while doing 30 Days of Art.  I will try to use some of the exercises to keep my creative self open.  I’m also still working on the art for my walls, including some mixed media projects, and practicing guitar.

Art things I didn’t get a chance to do, but would like to try: Hot Docs film festival (documentary film festival on now, see website for details), cake decorating (see Couture Cupcake Boutique for some beautiful cake designs), choreographing a dance (Kendra Hughes of Kinetic Elements graciously offered to help me with this, but we could never get our schedules to match), floral design (beautiful floral arrangements at Mocha Rose – I wish I had a green thumb!), finger painting (I’m going to do this one day, just for fun), life drawing class (I’ve moved this to Out of My Comfort Zone month), video game design (click here for Roger Ebert against the idea that video games are art, and here for the TED Talk with Kellee Santiago arguing that it is), and I’m sure there are many other things that I missed.

Tomorrow starts 31 Days, 31 Dates. Ahhhhhh!

Day sixty

International Dance Day

After many rehearsals, it was finally the day of the flash mob!  At Metro Hall Square (just east of King and John) today at 12:10pm, we surprised everyone by bursting in to dance!  Organized by the National Ballet School as a tribute to International Dance Day, about 130 dancers took over Metro Hall Square.  I wanted see the looks on everyones face when we started to dance, but I was paying so much attention to getting to where I needed to be (accidentally bumping into two different dancers in the process – oops) and getting the steps right, I didn’t have time to look around me!  Luckily the weather cooperated for us and although a little chilly, the sun was out – we were worried it would be raining and no one would see us.  The official video of the event is being edited and will be put up on You Tube on Sunday.  They have asked that we don’t publish any video until the official one is released, so in respect to the choreographer Matjash Mrozewski and NBS, I will wait to post the footage of my experience until Monday.  But here’s a little sneak peek of me before the dance, filmed by the very kind Nico Szidiropulosz: