Once again ... life has gotten in the way. I'm in the middle of a move and haven't had the space to do any writing. As of Apr 1 my desk will be set up and we'll be in our new apartment (same building, just newly renovated place) and ready to work again. Ok, make that Apr 2, it's going to take a few hours to do the move. One good thing about moving within the same buiding, not a lot of packing. We already have the keys and will start moving stuff down this weekend. We have an entire week to do the fussy things like sort the kitchen and closets out and shift all the smaller things.
So ... I haven't abandoned you. Just busy deciding what to get rid of and what I actually want to take. Amazing how much stuff isn't making the cut.
Ah yes ... I love food. Pretty much all types. That's one of the great things about living in Toronto, we don't lack for choice. My neigbourhood now boasts a fine baklawa place that serves wonderful, delightfully delicate, honey soaked baklawa. So delicate, your eyes will roll into the back of your head and don't get me started on their Turkish Delight.
The Baklawa Queen, which opened about 2 weeks ago, is less than a 5 min stroll from my doorstep. Not a lot of seating there, but they do a great take out. I love a good Turkish coffee, but don't normally order it any longer. It's one of those drinks that people tend to screw up on an epic level - it comes off weak, bitter with a wretched acidic backwash. This place has a fine touch when it comes to a proper Turkish coffee. It's strong, smooth and zero nasty aftertaste. I think I could sit in the window all day sipping it.
But the Turkish Delight OMG ... OMG ... they make it themselves. I'm waiting for them to start selling it for take out, which should be in about 2 weeks. They said they're bringing in a machine and baker to do it on site. Have you ever tried the Turkish delight that comes prepackaged? That sickly sweet, neon coloured, styrofoam textured stuff so common in stores? Throw out that idea because it has no resemblance to the fresh made delight sold here. Like I said O... M .... G! Coconut coated, nuts inside, not sweet but richly textured. If you eat it with a strong coffee the TD takes on a slightly sweeter taste.
They do more than just desserts, their lunch items (including soup and sandwiches) are filling. I had the manti - little pockets of beef that look like mini dumplings, served with a spicy tomato sauce and yogurt. Combined with a sweet backlawa for dessert and I'm a happy person. I'm going to work my way through their menu and I'll let you know what becomes my go to favourite.
Try them out - 1404 Yonge St. Toronto. That's just below St. Clair Ave on the west side of Yonge, across from the Fruit and Veg market. Easiest way to get there - get off the subway at the Pleasant Ave entrance and walk over to Yonge. Go south on Yonge until you hit Rosedale and cross to the west side. It's about 1/2 block north from the crosswalk. If you walk past the hardware store, you've gone too far.
Still working on the doorway arch. Hard to believe I haven't flitted off to another project already, but this one has turned into an excellent challenge with all the shadows and highlights. After doing a line trace of the original photo, I've been using a simple round, black brush tip with varying flow to get the deep, dark shadows and sense of depth. Here's the next stage:
I've turned the water colour wash off for awhile so I can concentrate on just the ink effect. I'm saving each stage, so far 15 shots, so I can pull them together on an animated gif to show the work as it progresses. When I finish the art, I'll post it for you.
Ah yes, what is Isobel the cat up to today? Here's the latest installment of my serial Dear Donna: emails from an increasingly desperate cat sitter. If you'd like to start from the beginning I've created a new page listing all chapters - Dear Donna Serial
Back banging away with my Wacom tablet again. I've been working on trying to even out my water colour wash effect. To date, it's been pretty much hit and miss so I've been working on some new ideas. I was looking over shots I took yesterday and spotted a photo that would be excellent to try out some of these ideas. I was wandering around in the Bloor/St. George area, by Varsity stadium photographing some of my favourite buildings. One in particular has a beautiful arched door - Munk Centre for International Affairs: