Sumi-e Artists of Canada


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Graduation Ceremony - October 11th, 2014

To graduate in sumi-e painting, that is, to receive your seal, requires several years of hard work, as all graduates know. At the graduation ceremony this year we saw the culmination of that hard work: thoughtful paintings from some thoughtful artists.

What does it mean to receive a seal? Gary Bist, President of the Sumi-e Artists of Canada, explained to guests of the ceremony that it is often five or more years of classes. Those classes teach students how to paint trees, rocks, insects, flowers, people, landscapes and many more subjects. A test piece finishes this process and a seal, a stone-carved imprint with some words portraying the nature of the artist, is given to the artist.

Kumiko Claros was inspired by a garden in Japan to paint her composition of bamboo and birds.

The mix of shades of gray gives the painting depth. The interplay between the birds and the bamboo make this a contemplative work of art.

Ruben Claros was thinking of Canada, specifically, Niagara Falls, when working on his painting.

The power and beauty of this unique place in Canada emerges in the painting. It has an interesting balance of rushing water, still water, man-made fences and rock structures.

Meriam Dove painted some eagles that her husband, Richard, (who filled in for Meriam that day) told us expressed some of the characteristics we admire.

The detailed brush work, and the contrast of background and foreground, capture the eye immediately. The eagle also demonstrates a resoluteness in the face of adversity.

These chip monks by Lorene Holmes came about by an accidental photo of them.

Each chip monk has its own story. Their fine fur and delicate features against the rough wood form a striking contrast.

Ellen Levy created a contemplative northern Canada scene with a commanding pine tree.

The strength of nature pervades the painting. A tiny man paddles a small canoe through the quiet natural scene.

An almost mystical painting was created by Farheen Ali.

A mosque within a landscape of mountains and boats takes you to a far off place. The water reflects the man-made and natural works, adding another dimension to the art.

The graduates helped by Marie Ikeda also added an imprint of their seals to the long list of seal imprints for the Sumi-e Artists of Canada. The organization has been collecting the imprints of seals for over 30 years.

Art supplies from a silent auction was beneficial to graduates, other artists, and those thinking of becoming sumi-e artists. Linda Nakatsu provided green tea and other snacks. Thank you, Linda!

Left to right, the graduates are: Ruben Claros, Kumiko Claros, Richard Dove (for Meriam Dove), Lorene Holmes, Ellen Levy and Farheen Ali.

All members look forward to meeting and working with the graduates at our workshops and shows.