Artist Wendy Wood’s painting, Heaven on the Hangdog Channel, has been transformed into a 504-piece puzzle by Haliburton puzzle makers, TheOccurrence. A launch event is being held Friday, Aug. 21 from 1 to 5 p.m. /Image supplied

Puzzle makers collaborate with area artist

By Sue Tiffin

When the doors of TheOccurrence, local puzzle purveyors, open on Aug. 21, at The Puzzle Factory, it could be to a line of fans – of puzzles, of Canadian landscapes, or both.

TheOccurrence is launching their new release that day, the already-coveted 504-piece Wendy Wood puzzle featuring Heaven on the Hangdog Channel, and with it their Canadian Artist Series. Forty people have signed up expressing interest in the launch, at which Wood, a Canadian landscape artist who lives in the Haliburton Highlands, will attend to sign puzzle boxes from 1 to 5 p.m.

Heaven on the Hangdog is a painting – an acrylic on canvas – by Wood. Michael J. Bainbridge and Brigitte Gall, TheOccurrence co-founders, were part of the Haliburton Art in the Park craft show last year, where Wood also had a booth.

“Michael and I both had the same thought bubble at the same time – ‘Wendy’s work would make a brilliant puzzle’, so we asked if she’d consider working with us and she said yes,” said Gall.

The pair have approached other local artists, and artists in the Greater Toronto Area, Newfoundland and British Columbia.

“Picking the right image is a long process because on one hand, while a piece might be stunning and appealing, it has to meet the criteria of being a fun and accessible jigsaw puzzle,” said Gall.

TheOccurrence website describes the Wood puzzle as being perfect for a “weekend at the cottage,” and recommended pairings are a “Mom-sized ‘juice’ box or a kale smoothie.”

“The Hangdog Channel is nestled in the world’s largest chain of freshwater islands,” reads the puzzle launch press release. “Rock faces scraped bare from the wind, twisted white pine, and the wide, wild water of the 30,000 islands are woven into the Canadian identity. The rugged beauty of the Canadian Shield requests the observer to be still, and listen to the heavenly chorus of nature.”

The Wendy Wood Puzzle Launch takes place on Aug. 21 from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. For more information about the event, TheOccurrence or The Puzzle Factory, located at 130 Industrial Park Road, Unit #2, visit