I have always loved colour. When someone asks me what my favourite colour is, I always have to hem and haw and try to come up with an answer, because truthfully, I just love all colours! I remember in Grade 3 getting in trouble with my teacher because I coloured with too many crayons.
"Look at your sun," my teacher exclaimed in horror, "it's a messy swirl of orange and yellow and red! See how everyone else is making their sun? They are making them nice and neat, with a big yellow circle with rays coming out of it! That's the way a sun is supposed to look!"
But that's not the way the sun looked to me. I saw it as a big swirl of many colours and that's the way I wanted to colour it. And I didn't want my sun perched way up in one corner of the page, I wanted a big splashy sun that took over the whole page, drenching it in colours from edge to edge. I must have been a great trial to my very old-fashioned, linear-thinking teacher!
My eyes are still constantly seeking out colour. At this time of year, it becomes a treasure hunt for me to find as many colours as I can in the winter landscapes.
Sometimes I can find splashy bold colours, like the bright red of a male cardinal, sheltering in our rose bush.
Or bright-coloured snowsuits against a snowy white hill.
And a scarlet velvety sumac surrounded by evergreen.
At times the colours are much more subtle, like hidden silvery green moss, secreting itself behind a waterfall.
And the olive green plumage of the female cardinal, hunting for seeds beside a white-capped sparrow.
Or the fluffy russet ears of a furry squirrel, happy to find a peanut on a cold winter day.
Sometimes the colours look chillingly beautiful, like the icy blue of frozen water around a rocky outcropping.
And a hazy orange sky over a frozen harbour.
The colours can be shy and delicate, like this pastel pink sky.
But they can also be so warm and inviting, like this sun-strewn path that lights our way home.
And finally, colours can be so very bright and cheerful, like a warm, snuggly cat curled up on a red blanket in a yellow chair, waiting for our return.
(Yes, this is my Tiger, fully recovered and happy, 5 months after her near-death experience!)