I've always enjoyed drawing.
I majored in Art in High School, put together a portfolio for art courses in college, and intended to go but had no funds. After getting a job at Canarim on Granville Street downtown as a credit clerk I discovered the joy of the weekly paycheque, so although I saved a great deal of money, I never did get to art school, and instead after 4 years of office work I got married and used the money as a down payment on a house, which in Vancouver BC was a wise investment, and maybe much better than two years in college!
Here are two hand drawings of a look at every day life in our family.
I wish I'd drawn more, but at the time I didn't think our life was all that exciting.
However, each summer as soon as school let out, we headed South to the USA. My Mom loved to visit Amity Oregon, where her brother Ed Brutke lived on the family farm where she had been born, and had grown up. To this day she misses the fields of Amity, and the quiet peaceful life of the farm. She only lived there for 19 years but it's still in her blood. She's now been in Canada for 60 years and is truly more Canadian than American! The drawing above shows the family car loaded up, with my Dad not shown as he's inside the garage locking up. Poor Dad never had a modern door with a remote garage opener; instead he had a heavy wooden door which had to be locked from the inside. Rain or shine he had to go inside the garage first, open the door, and heave it up with his arms. Poor man....Sugar was Leona's pet rabbit, bought in Richmond when she was 8 years old. At the time of this drawing Sugar was 5 years old, and I believe she died shortly after. Leona always loved pets. My Grandma Williams, who lived just two houses up the lane, took care of our house, garden, lawn, and any pets we had.
We usually stayed for 1 - 2 weeks at Uncle Ed's and had a marvelous happy vacation.
Another drawing...actually hand painted by myself with a simple paint set. I was only 13 and I was really proud of this drawing in my sketch book. The farmhouse is still there, with a new owner. It was sold in 2005 and we visited in 2006 with my parents. The place is changed but basically the same, yet not the same, as strangers now live there. But I'm happy someone bought it. I believe it was only $125,000 for the house and the acreage. A secret dream of mine was always to live in it, but of course, I'm not a farmer and it would be too difficult for Robert to commute to work, as I'm sure he could find work with his expertise in software design, but I don't think there is good WiFi in the area.
We visited again last summer in 2015, and the whole area is now greatly changed with the trees chopped down and many new large homes built. Uncle Ed and my grandparents, Adolph and Helen Brutke, would be horrified.
Change is inevitable, so these old drawings which bring back such happy memories are a sweet blessing to me. I'm glad I didn't throw them out!
By Loretta Houben