Life Near Ocean: The Artist’s Muse

 

Linda Heslop – Is it real or is it…?Linda Heslop feature artist UltimateBnB

A Question of Balance

 

Linda Heslop lives in Victoria on Vancouver Island. But her art graces the walls of collectors around the globe. Her deep connection with this place is unmistakeable…an indelible imprint that informs nearly everything she does. “I am simply in love with Vancouver Island”, she says.

Linda Heslop feature artist UltimateBnB

Moods of the Sea & Sky

Perhaps the most striking aspect of Ms. Heslop’s work is it’s realistic detail. Upon first glance one assumes a photograph…many are taken aback to find that, no, it’s a water-colour.

Linda Heslop feature artist UltimateBnB

Island Reverie

When we set out to look for artwork that could introduce our guests at UltimateBnB to the beauty of this island the decision was an easy one to make. We chose two prints: ‘Arrival’ and ‘After the Storm’. Each one personifies the ‘Life Near Ocean’ experience that island living entails.

Linda Heslop feature artist UltimateBnB
Photo-realistic painting by Victoria BC artist, Linda Heslop, featured artist at UltimateBnB

 

 

 

You can learn more about our featured artist, Linda Heslop by visiting her website: www.lindaheslop.com She is represented in Victoria, BC Canada by Full Circle Studio & Gallery.

 

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Living Near Ocean

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I must go down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky, And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by;

From ‘Sea Fever’ – John Masefield

There was a shiny brass plate with those words lovingly hand-engraved upon it that adorned a bulkhead above the stairs leading to the galley on my brother’s power-craft. The fact he made the effort to place it there speaks volumes about the love and respect he and I have for the mighty ocean.

Born and raised on a tiny island that sits at the mouth of the Bay of Fundy, the sea is in my bones. For many generations my family subsisted on the plenty found in the surrounding ocean; the entire community did. There was little else.

I have no conscious recollection of any self-made covenant to spend my life by the sea…somehow, it just ended up that way. Observation would suggest I’m not alone. To witness the ocean’s magnetic pull one need only stroll down the hill toward Ocean Boulevard on any given day to observe children feeding Trumpeter swans at the lagoon, lovers walking the sands, families enjoying a sea-side picnic, while kayakers and para-sailors glide across the waves.

With this post I want to begin a feature section in this blog that will present a blend of photos and stories related to life near the ocean. My aim is to add new articles from time-to-time that will enable others who may not be fortunate enough to live beside an ocean or to watch it’s majesty unfold each day to have a sense of what it’s like. As a co-host at Ultimate BnB, my ulterior motive might be to entice the curious traveler to spend a few nights at our bed and breakfast; to indulge themselves in simple pleasures found at every turn when living “Life Near Ocean”.

 

 

 

 

 

Top 9 Reasons to Spend the Holidays in Victoria BC

There are many reasons to consider spending the Holiday Season on Vancouver Island…lovely mild weather, incredible scenery, and fun, friendly people to start. But there are plenty of themed events to take in as well. I’ve chosen 9 but there are many more!

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  • #9 – 24th Annual Festival of Trees in support of BC Children’s Hospital. Each year a variety of business leaders present their staff decorated Christmas trees to adorn the public spaces throughout The Bay Centre in downtown Victoria. Shoppers are encouraged to view the trees then donate to vote for their favourite. The 2015 campaign raised over $23,000 for a very worthy cause.
  • #8 – Canada’s National Gingerbread Showcase – Another fundraiser for a great cause: Habitat for Humanity. Last year $38,102 was raised for “Building homes – Building Hope”. There are 2 categories: professional & home baker. Entries are judged during a kick-off gala evening at The Laurel Point Inn where they can be viewed until January 3rd, 2016. Tip: don’t take in this event when you’re hungry!
  • #7 – A Sentimental Christmas featuring soprano Eleanor McCainEleanor McCainDecember 11-13, 2015. Celebrate the season with the Victoria Symphony’s traditional concert of yuletide cheer featuring soprano Eleanor McCain. Maestra Tania Miller and the Victoria Symphony will be joined by choristers from the Victoria Choral Society for a concert full of Christmas favorites including an opportunity for the audience to join in with sing-a-long holiday carols.

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  • #6 Blind Boys of Alabama Christmas Show – Tuesday, Dec. 15/15 – 7:30 PM. It has been 8 long years since this incomparable 5-time Grammy winning act has graced the stage in Victoria. They normally appear at the summer Jazz Fest so this special Holiday Season appearance promises to be a real treat.
  • #5 17th Annual Sing Along Messiah – December 16th, 2015 – 7 PM at Alix Gooldin Hall and presented by the Civic Orchestra of Victoria. This event is the perfect opportunity to give those vocal cords a workout on some of the most challenging Christmas music around.
  • #4 Magic of Christmas at world famous Butchart Gardens – from Dec. 1st, 2015 thru Jan. 6th, 2016. A tradition since 1987, the lighting crew works for 2 months preparing the hundreds of thousands of lights for the December 1st light-up ceremony. Throughout the festive season the ice skating rink in Waterwheel Square adds an extra experience to the lighting extravaganza. Each evening the Festive Brass and Traditional Carollers perform in the crisp night air.
  • # 3 Christmas with Holly Cole – December 19, 2015 – 8 PM15-16-Specials-Holly-Cole-1030x1030

  • Deck your holiday season with the sounds of Holly! Juno-winning Canadian singer/songwriter Holly Cole returns to the Victoria Symphony and will delight audiences with her versatile and distinctive voice. Mixing jazz, pop and your favourite holiday music, her unique interpretations and original music are applauded as being highly musical, intensely innovative, and refreshingly witty.
  • # 2 One Tree Exhibit – Nov 14, 2015 thru January 15, 2016. For almost a century this old growth Big-Leaf Maple from the Cowichan Valley stood witness to the events that shaped Vancouver Island. It needed to come down in October 2014 for health and safety reasons. Initially destined for the wood pile, the visionaries at Live Edge Design and the Robert Bateman Centre had a dream. Together they gathered 42 artists who, in turn, created nearly $175,000 worth of incredible art-work from this old, dying tree. Now the public is invited to celebrate this tree through an exhibit of the artist’s work showing at the Robert Bateman Centre. Come see this impressive community project that celebrates a 100-year-old-tree through the creations of 42 artists from Vancouver Island and across Canada.
  •  # 1 Grand Opening of Ultimate BnB“The best vacation rental suite we’ve ever seen” – T & P, Cochrane Alberta.  The number one reason to spend the Holiday Season in Victoria is the chance to be among the very first guests at our brand-new vacation rental. As an introductory offer we are keeping our rates at their current Low-Season levels throughout the month of December. Look for our listing on your favourite travel site:
  • VRBO
  • FLIPKEY
  • TRIP ADVISOR
  • AIRBNB
  • TRAVEL MOB

As your hosts at Ultimate BnB we wish everyone a truly delightful Holiday Season and the very best for 2016!