Ottawa Street, Griffintown

When I first started sketching in 2011, Montreal’s Griffintown neighbourhood was a very different place. It was just the start of a massive construction and gentrification process in what used to be the first area where Irish immigrants to this city would settle in the early nineteenth century. In 2012, the old buildings were still intact and I sketched the row houses and a few cranes. Seven years later, it’s even harder to find traces of the old neighbourhood. Griffintown is mostly tall condo buildings, construction sites for tall condo buildings, pricey home furnishing stores (you have to fill those condos with something), restaurants and cafés. I realize this is part of the evolution of cities but I miss being able to draw places like the Horse Palace and other old buildings in the neighbourhood. This watercolour is another half-sheet painting that will go into the upcoming show at Galerie Carlos in March.

Alice under the weather

Alice the dog did not have a good week. I suspect she ate something rotten in the woods. I will spare you the gritty details, but she did do a lot of sleeping. That gave me a chance to practice using different tools in Procreate on my iPad — chalk, coloured pencil, and different ink and paint brushes. I’m happy to report that she’s on the mend, and I am quite certain of this because on the last drawing she was back to her usual behaviour of looking at me impatiently, hoping for a walk, while I draw.