A landscape provides a wealth of inspiration for me, with its enormity of space and beauty of detail -such a paradox of big vs. small, noisy vs. quiet. Wherever I travel, landscapes capture my imagination and something in my core being. In the process of painting them, I’m at one with nature and live with it as I paint it.

In 1996, my good friend Judy Finch invited me to drive across Canada on a painting trip with Doris McCarthy. Doris was one of Canada’s foremost Canadian landscape painters, and she became a dear friend. My friendship with her was an adventure – she was focused, playful and spiritual, with a zest for life and a remarkable ability to connect with people.

Doris was a shape and colour painter. Her approach was to simplify shape and colour to their essence. Observing her painting in the land was hugely inspirational. Like me, she was in awe and inspired by nature and its generosity in giving us heat and light … and life.

Doris passed away last year at the age of 100, and I miss her very much. Now I travel and paint with Judy Finch, Wendy Wacko and Barbara Sutherland . I’m sure Doris is watching us from somewhere …