Art School: Semester 3, Week 13

Greetings everyone! The semester is (finally!) coming to a close. One last final exam to go and then it’s done. There isn’t much in the news this week. I’ve been focused on school, mostly.

I did take an interesting set of walks yesterday (mostly after my final exam) and took a lot of flower pictures for some reason. I’ll stuff them all below.

And there was this from the SeaBus on Tuesday:

That is a view of a huge pile of sulphur being made larger. That gantry system is pouring another pile out (it’s the yellowish column on the right) and creating a drift smoke of sulphur in the process. I didn’t crop this because I thought the ships helped put the size of this place in perspective. It’s on the north side of the harbour, and as far as I can tell the sulphur comes in on a train from somewhere inland. Eventually it winds up on ships for export, I think. Canada still largely runs on a resource extraction economy, and this is an example of that in practice.

Also last week I asked about obscure signs on the SeaBus:

I am happy to report that two people stepped up to help me out: Amy and John. It seems there are a slew of special purpose, nautically themed signs for things, and you have to know where to look to find out about them. John knew one off the cuff, and Amy found an online catalogue selling them and found them all. Here’s what they mean:

  • Top left — bucket of stuff (probably sand) to throw on fire (as I suspected)
  • Top centre — emergency bilge pump
  • Top right — fire damper for machinery area (like a diagram of a fireplace flue) or in a duct
  • Bottom left — (SL) safety locker
  • Bottom center — (C) Control system
  • Bottom right — (no hand) restricted access (I was wrong about this one)

Specialized stuff, it seems. I kind of get the fire damper one, but the emergency bilge pump sign goes over my head. No clue how that is supposed to mean what they say it means. Still, it’s a symbol. Now I know, I guess. Thanks to Amy and John for chiming in!

And with that, we’ll go on to the summary of classes this time around.


Done except for the final. I took the last quiz about the last story, and visited the instructor to grill him about a question on the previous quiz that I got wrong. Turns out he’s far too easy to manipulate, even if you don’t intend to do that. He decided my concerns about the question were right, and gave everyone the point for it regardless of their answer. If this was only the first time he’d done something like that in response to my asking, I’d be OK with it, but this is the second or third time now. It feels kind of dirty. *sigh*

Oh, yeah. He might still be reading these posts. Hi Alex!

The final exam for this class is this coming Tuesday. I have to reread the stories and take a peek at the stuff he has provided for test prep. Overall this should be just fine.

Oh yeah. I promised to provide a full list of the stories we read in this class at some point. I can do that:

  • “True Trash” by Margaret Atwood, from The New Oxford Book of Canadian Short Stories in English
  • “Griff!” by Austin C. Clarke, from The New Oxford Book of Canadian Short Stories in English
  • “One Good Story, That One” by Thomas King, from The New Oxford Book of Canadian Short Stories in English
  • “Transfigurations” by Janice Kulyk Keefer, from The New Oxford Book of Canadian Short Stories in English
  • “Wolverine” by Raymond Bock, from Atavisms
  • “The Hockey Sweater” by Roch Carrier, from The Hockey Sweater and Other Stories
  • “How to Get into Medical School, Part I” by Vincent Lam, from Bloodletting & Miraculous Cures
  • “The Bear Came over the Mountain” by Alice Munro, from My Best Stories
  • “Queen of the North” by Eden Robinson, from The Penguin Anthology of Stories by Canadian Women
  • “Simple Recipes” by Madeline Thien, from Trek: The Magazine of the University of British Columbia, vol. 52, no. 2 (2002)

My personal favourite was “One Good Story, That One” and I highly recommend it. In fact, given what I’ve learned so far, there is probably a lot of Thomas King that I want to read when time allows.

Canadian Art

This class is done. The final exam was yesterday (as I write this). I have no clue how I did on the final yet, of course, but that will get resolved once the grades are submitted to the online system the school maintains.

I got a lot out of this class. It covered a bit of Canadian history and culture in the process of discussing famous Canadian artists and art works. Probably my biggest discovery was Lawrence Paul Yuxwelupton, whose work is very challenging, and very critical of colonial powers, and yet is so striking that you cannot help but get lost in it and think deeply when you see it. I really admire the way he fuses Indigenous and western styles into something unique. I hope to see his work in person one of these days.

In any case, this class completes my art history requirement for the diploma I am working on. I actually enjoyed all of my art history classes, which is something of a surprise. But finishing them does mean I can turn back to my studio classes more fully and with fewer distractions. I appreciate that as well.


Only the usual index of art school posts this week. Been too busy to save anything else. This is here so anyone finding this post can go see all the posts in order and context if so desired.


Flowers. On Thursday as I walked to the bus stop I saw a clematis bloom over the top of a fence. It tickled my fancy so I took a picture. When I got to school I had time to kill before my final, so I took a walk, and during that walk — being primed for it by the earlier picture — I found a lot more flowers and photographed them. Then, after the final, I wound up walking some distance thanks to a construction induced bus reroute and a detour to the store. More flower pics ensued then as well.

So, I give you this pile of pictures. These are unedited. I have removed duplicates and thrown away a couple that were a bit blurry, but other than that I have done nothing by way of colour correction, cropping, etc. Seemed more fun this way. And they are only here to amuse in any case. I probably won’t make a habit out of photographing flowers.

I did warn you there were a lot of them. Flowers seem to grow here in Vancouver, even in August.

And In Conclusion…

This seemed appropos for some reason.

Till next week!

Sculptor/Artist. Former programmer. Former volunteer firefighter. Former fencer. Weirdest resume on the planet, I suspect.

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