Rumbling down the one-way street in front of my studio was a collection of motorcycles finishing up a day of cruising. It was twilight and the slight curve where the street turns at the base of the hill is a natural spot for gravel and sand to gather.
One of the riders skidded and dropped the bike. It was low speed, but still that’s a lot of metal to connect with pavement.
We were watching the impromptu parade from inside and saw the whole thing happen in slow motion.
The 20 or so riders dismounted to survey injury and damage. As helmets were removed, it was becoming clear that they were all women, in a casual gang of weekend riders called the “Chrome Divas” who venture out on organized runs for charity.
A bent pedal and a sprained ankle was the early diagnosis. A slightly embarrassed rider, but otherwise everyone ok.
I got her a glass of water and a chair as she waited for a paramedic, and for the auto club to haul the bike to the shop.
The “gang” sped away to the bar for a beer and left the lone biker with us to keep her company until help arrived. In the gathering darkness, it was not apparent right away, but something about this woman was familiar: a turn of phrase, a figure of speech, her laugh?
After returning to the area after a time away, every chance encounter seemed to unlock a childhood memory. Was my memory playing tricks on me?
“Marie?” I asked out of practically nowhere. “Yes”
I was surprised. She was perplexed.
This was an old neighbour and childhood chum from kindergarten who I grew up with through high school. She actually came with me when I got my driver’s license at 16.
We laughed and chatted in the dark for about an hour until her brother arrived, discussing life in the little town down the road where we grew up and all the personalities that lived there.
It was a life moment, pure accident.
The incident inspired me to paint this scene, which I just had to call “Chrome Divas.”
To help with the cause, a percentage of the proceeds from the sale of this painting will be donated to the Chrome Divas charity fund.
It’s an exciting weekend ahead. The launch of Pretty Fierce/Beluxe yoga wear is on at the National Women’s Show at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, Nov. 9 – 11. Visit booth 1204 to see all the styles.
Some fab moments are put together in this video that visually connects Beluxe and Pretty Fierce.
A striking new series of Bev Hogue “Blue or Nothing” paintings and yoga gear with Pretty Fierce are featured Oct. 26 and 27 at the Oast Hayloft in Niagara-on-the-Lake.
The famous blue paintings of this highly collectible Niagara artist blend fantasy and fashion in the pop surreal genre. And through her Beluxe label, this bold imagery is distributed worldwide on clothing, jewellery, shoes and accessories.
The natural next move was for Bev to partner with Canada’s own Pretty Fierce with a line of yoga pants and tops. See the latest styles at the launch in late October.
We made some new friends at the Red, Hot and Blue rockabillly fest in Brockville. Nathalie, Amund, Dave, Heather, Claude, Craig, Trev and Debbie — you made us feel most welcome.
Already looking forward to next year’s show on the Thousand Islands shore.
And we are proud to announce that the Spitfire is the spot to pick up original Bev Hogue art, collectible prints, and fashion necessities like Pretty Fierce yoga gear emblazoned with Beluxe blue femmes.
In the Brockville area, contact Nathalie Lavergne at the Spitfire Cafe, 10 Victoria Ave.
It’s another trip to L.A. but this time with a twist. For the opening at Hive Gallery’s “Secret Art of Animators 2” show on Saturday, Oct. 3, I decided to send a representative in my place — an 11 in. x 14 in. acrylic on canvas painting titled In Your Dreams.
The show highlights the artwork of the movers and shakers of the animation industry. Among the featured guests: Simpsons art director Andrew Brandou, Model maker Tory Bellici (The Matrix) and Mythbusters host and M5 model maker Kari Byron, among many others.
I was asked to submit a piece for the accompanying show that plays on ’90s animation favourites. Ren and Stimpy were too hard to resist. They pose (as still as they can possibly be) American Gothic style, bookending a portrait of one of my blue women. She has the expression of one of my favourites, Deer Prudence.
I like the piece and I hope it goes to a good home.