By Edith George and Natalia Outkina
I was celebrating my 70th Birthday this year, so I decided to treat myself to a commissioned watercolour painting of one of my favourite places, the house called, “Rivermede,” located at 3100 Weston Road.
I knew all the stories of the Gardiner and Crang Families and that both families had a link to my family.
Looking through a marketplace app, I discovered Natalia Outkina and examined her watercolours of houses closely. She was the one to do the painting for me.
“Rivermede” is now hanging in a place of honour in my living room, where I can sit and enjoy this artwork.
My name is Natalia Outkina, and I live in Etobicoke, just southwest of the Rivermede house.
Etobicoke has many old buildings with excellent architectural design and history, very few houses such as those in Etobicoke can be found in Emery Village.
When Edith George reached me with her plans about painting one of the oldest and most beautiful buildings, called Rivermede, I got really excited.
Edith shared with me the historical facts about the house and surroundings, where everything brings you back to the pre-development of the Emery Village in the 1930s.
On a frigid day last January, I was really pleased to see the charming beauty of the house up close.
A challenging part of our project was to show the look of the place in the old days. I reproduced the original look of the walls and windows based on the old photos Edith shared with me. Plus, I added the flower beds in front of the building and made the trees “younger”, reflecting the original look of Rivermede’s premises back in the 1930s.
The project took me several weeks to complete. Most of the time was given to the pencil work, to the sketch I did from scratch, trying to apply the available old house photos and my own photos of the current view to the final painting.
Both Edith and I liked the result. And we hope that it will be an excellent addition to the library of materials about this beautiful and important place called Rivermede.
The watercolour painting brings you back to a special place; it would have been amazing to be invited to a party at this home, in its grandeur.
My art portfolio includes more than 200 paintings of houses.
Some of them are presented on my website: