Chiarina Loggia

A printmaker's progress


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Breathe- The Future Is Ahead


Breathe

Breathe

 

I submitted this photograph to a National Geographic’s Your Shot assignment with the theme of Change In Your Life. Thinking of my daughter’s birthday tomorrow, I remembered this photo which I took of her at a time of change in both our lives. You can see the shot on the National Geographic site, with a description, here. Please like and share if you can.

I have made several prints from this photograph over the years, including ones I posted about here and here, and the ones below.

I don’t think I will ever tire of this image, for it holds the beginnings of my daughter’s future in its hands, as tightly as she is holding it here. Happy birthday, sweetheart!

Breathe, 2

Breathe, 2

Breathe, 1

Breathe, 1


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Tuesday Tales – Two In The Wood


 Two in the Wood

Two In The Wood

Today is my birthday and as I count my blessings, not only do I run out of fingers and toes, but one of them stands out shining brightly. So I dedicate this post to D, who shelters me in his home in the woods and in his warm, abiding heart.

This piece was created several years ago when I first began exprerimenting with monotypes. It is primarily brayer and palette knife work with added collage of printed handmade papers. The contrasting light and dark elements is a study of opposites attracting and complimenting each other, allowing each to shine against one another. It has special meaning for me today as I was gifted with this beautiful quote.

“I will love the light for it shows me the way. Yet I will endure the darkness for it shows me the stars.”
Og Mandino

Two in the Wood, a 10″x12″ monotype on 15″x20″ paper, is offered this week at $200, unframed.


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From a Poet’s Heart – for the late bloomers


for the late bloomers.

A beautiful poem by Sirena Tales  that couldn’t have arrived on a more serendipitous day for this late blooming November child!

Thank you, Chloe, for the continued magic of your poetry.


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Music Mondays – Slowwwwww It Down


Today’s song is one of Coldplay’s lovely tender pieces that I was lucky to see performed on stage. It’s lyrics are particularly poignant for me as another birthday looms and,  following it, big changes in the new year.

Please life won’t you just slow down a little?

Us Against the World by Coldplay

And below is the magic these boys create on stage. Enjoy.


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Photo Fridays – For My Mother


Esterina

Esterina

Last January was my mother’s 75th birthday and so I decided to make a trip out East to visit her then instead of my usual summer visit. The snowstorm that greeted me and remained my constant companion throughout my trip reminded me why I never visit that time of year. But being there for this milestone was important to me.

I wanted to give my mother something special for this birthday but finding the right gift was not easy. My mother is exceedingly difficult to find presents for and her appreciation and understanding of my art is not always strong. But I was involved in a cultural exhibition at the time and I had to choose a theme for my own culture. I decided to focus on my own family and our emigration to Canada. While researching the subject matter for this one piece I came across this photo of my mother. It was taken when she was very young and still unmarried (sometime before 17) and while she was still in Italy. I fell in love with the softness and innocence of her expression. I decided to make a print of the photo ( see below) and give it to her for her birthday. I am happy to say that she was thrilled with it, immediately hanging it up on her wall. The warmth of her reception made it worth braving the cold days of my visit. (And I bought a splendid new coat to boot!)

Esterina

Esterina

Happy Mother’s Day to all mothers out there!


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Photo Fridays – Remembering My Dad


Coming to Canada - March 19, 1964

Coming to Canada – March 19, 1964

Today is my dad’s birthday. He would have been 81, but he passed away in 2009. I wrote about his passing and the effect it had on me in an earlier post. I still get choked up when I read it, even after so much time. But I also smile when I realize where my own life has taken me since then, to new and unexpected love and adventures. It seems my life has always been a series of adventures, beginning with that eventful trip to Canada in 1964. That’s me on the right in the picture above, looking like a little waif.

Looking at this picture I can see character traits in each of our faces that still hold true to this day: a stubborn strength in my sister on the left, a gentle intelligence in the one on my dad’s knee, a kindness exhuding from my mother, and I note she is the only one smiling, and hesitant reservation in my father. (The stranger posing in the background and the huge jugs of wine on the tables still makes me laugh.) Absent are the sister who was left behind in her grave and another yet to be born. I see this picture and I wish my mother’s arm had been around my shoulder for I  look so lost and forlorn. I wasn’t used to change and, to this day, I remember the strange taste and texture of the bread on board the Saturna, though little else except having to go on deck with life jackets in a storm. My mother tells me we were all seasick for a good part of the eight day voyage but I seem to have blocked that memory. I remember nothing of our trip to Naples to board the ship, and only a few images of the countryside while travelling by train to Montreal from Halifax. Again, I do remember our first meal at my aunt’s house when we arrived. It was chicken soup with little bow pasta. It tasted strange as well, and I couldn’t eat much. I was a very picky eater as a child. I still am, though I don’t mind strangeness nearly as much. I have lived in far too many places to let newness bother me. In fact I rather look forward to new experiences and feel restless when life becomes too monotonous.

My father never really liked change or adventure. His penurious circumstance propelled him to a new country in the hopes of a better life for himself and his family. This he achieved quite well. His courage to bring his large family to a strange new world and start fresh with no education, no skills or even language leaves me in awe, and I am forever grateful for the opportunities this opened up for me and my sisters. But my dad never really enjoyed his life in Canada. He spent his years there wishing to go back to Italy to retire. This he never managed to do for he became ill shortly before retirement and was hospitalized for the last years of his life. He did manage numerous trips back and spent a few wonderful summers there. The picture below is from his youth, riding atop his mule, Giulia. I hope somewhere, somehow, that memory of a lost youth is still alive and bringing him joy. I know the thought of it makes me smile.

Copy of dad_and_giulia - Copy-2

Dad and Giulia

A few more pictures of my father can be seen here.

Wishing everyone a wonderful weekend! Hug your dad if he is close. Call him if he is far away.


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Tuesday Tales – The Magic Around The Corner


Birthday Cake

Birthday Cake

A few years ago I wrote a post about my daughter turning of age, calling it Time The Beckoning Thief. This past Sunday we celebrated her birthday again and I couldn’t help but take note of the changes in our lives that time has brought. We are both with new partners and in new homes. She is about to graduate from university and take on the challenges of this new stage in her life. My work has continued to evolve and be a source of tremendous joy and growth. But the most significant change for me has been the realization that magic can truly be just around the corner, for I have experienced it. Back then I was awash in memories and longings. Now I am filled with life’s possibilities and certainties, for I have experienced joys and adventures only hitherto dreamt of and I face the future with the knowledge that life will still surprise and amaze me.

And sometimes what amazes me is the constancy of certain things, like the bond between mother and daughter. Despite the changes in our lives, our love and need for each other remains steadfast. I am so proud of my daughter. She is an inspiration in ways too numerous to express. And she continues to be my muse. The image of her below is one of my favorites, for how it captures the contrast of strength and fragility, youth and wisedom that so characterises her. I have printed it several times in different ways, including one in which she is painted blue! The title, Sandro’s Dream, refers to the resemblance of her face here to Sandro Botticelli’s Venus in his Birth of Venus.

Sandro's Dream, 2

Sandro’s Dream, 2

Birth of Venus, detail, by Sandro Botticelli

Birth of Venus, detail, by Sandro Botticelli

Sandro's Dream, 2, detail

Sandro’s Dream, 2, detail

For this print I textured her face with tiny crackles to resemble an old frescoe. I did this to allude even further to her Italian heritage. The scenery on either side of her places her firmly in the present, on the beautiful island home we share.

Sandro’s Dream, 2, a photopolymer gravure etching measuring 16″x12″, is offered this week at a special price of $500 unframed.


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Time – The Beckoning Thief


Pink

My mother’s past

Fades into my daughter’s future

They are my present

My daughter turns nineteen today. We are going to celebrate by taking her out for her first legal drink tonight. It is exciting to watch her take another step into adulthood and I am delighted that she is wanting to share this milestone with her mother. She is a beautiful, brave young woman, and I am privileged to observe and be a part of her ride through life, with all its ups and downs.

But in observing her ups I am sometimes forced into a down of my own. While she stands on the brink of a long life full of promise and dreams I find myself awash in a life filling up with memories and longings for things that were or might have been. Her passages bring home the passage of time as it moves inexorably forward and I can’t help but think “No, Mick, time is not on my side”.

How do you stave off this thief that is Time? You can try to keep him locked behind bars by ‘living in the moment’ with courage and enthusiasm, being ‘present’ to all that is around you. But how do you ignore him when he reaches his hands out from the bars, waving birthdays and benchmarks at you? You can turn your face away, but the wind he creates will blow stealthily from behind your neck, sending shivers of apprehension down your spine. Or you can unlock the bars and hug him to you. Take away his power for grief by embracing the beauty in change and the ephemeral.

My daughter turns nineteen today. We are going to have a drink together and toast the beauty in this life we are sharing and experiencing, each in our own way.