Hello again!

It came to my attention I haven't updated this since July....

Some things have happened since then, mostly Countermeasure things - our official album release, our European tour. Once I'm on holidays I'll have lots of time so I'll update about these events!

Then creative projects got put on hold for a bit for the moving process and then a busy patch at work. But over the holidays and in the new year I should have some more time, and I've got various projects on the go - a short story, two songs, new ukulele videos, more photos. Hopefully I can get back on regular updates!

Until next time, which will be a lot sooner than the last time,



Having neglected my piano for too long and finding myself with more free time than usual, I decided a little while ago to start the non-trivial process of reading through all of Beethoven's piano sonatas. I'm not doing them in order, so much - I have book  1 of 3 at work and book 2 at home, so I'm jumping back and forth in time a bit.

In the process I've come across a few interesting thoughts:

For one, I find that Chopin (my usual favourite to sight-read) is a much better writer for piano. No matter what crazy chords he throws in there, they more often fit the hand comfortably. Beethoven, I find, was more concerned with form and structure, but less concerned with making things playable. (Part of this, of course, has to do with me being out of practice, but often my hands simply aren't big enough to play a part as it is supposed to be played - which often leads to cheating with pedal - blasphemy!)

Second, I knew that finger agility and control deteriorate when not practicing, but I hadn't realized that sight-reading does as well. Sight-reading was always a big strength of mine, but I was a little dismayed when I started at how many easy mistakes I was making. This has been slowly getting better as I've been going through, but I should really make a point of reading more often.

Third, I'm finding a renewed appreciation for Beethoven's genius. Despite the playability issues, Beethoven certainly redefined the form of the sonata. It's so interesting to see him as a halfway point between something like Mozart - almost always predictable and formulaic - and a Romantic composer: playing with themes in unconventional ways, throwing in surprises here and there, and at times very deliberately departing from the template of a typical sonata.

I'm not sure if I'll finish the entire sonata repertoire, since I remember that the later sonatas get a little weird (therefore less fun to read) and it's December so there's all sorts of Christmas music to play. But it's been an enlightening exercise in the meantime, for sure.


Sewing Class

I haven't been working on some of my other creative projects for awhile because I've been pouring my creative energy into my Sewing Basics class at the Sewing Junction.

Here are our three projects! The first was an infinity scarf, which I made out of a shimmery silver fabric. For the second project we made cloth napkins with mitred corners. And the last was a toiletry bag made of canvas with an exposed zipper. I'm very proud of all of them!

I would highly recommend the Sewing Junction if you're at all interested in sewing! They have a wide variety of classes - basic learn-to-sew classes, learning to do alterations, more advanced class, workshops for specific projects. And Clara is a fantastic and patient teacher. Get sewing! :)


Ride for Heart

This is unrelated to creative projects, but I think I'd like to use this space for public updates about my life in general - those just usually happen to be related to creative projects. :)

On Sunday (May 31) I'm riding in Ride for Heart, which is a fundraiser for the Heart and Stroke Foundation. They close off the Don Valley Parkway and the Gardiner Expressway to cars and let cyclists ride along it, which is great fun. I'm doing the 50km distance.

The Heart and Stroke Foundation is a charity close to my heart, so I'd appreciate it if you'd consider donating to my ride. You can find my fundraising page here.

Your generosity is greatly appreciated! :)