Monday, March 30, 2015

A birthday gift to myself: "Drawings Inspired by Life" by Dorian Vallejo

When I saw that artist Dorian Vallejo had released a book with limited Collector's Edition copies including original sketches inside (!!!) I had to have one :) A strange looking package arrived the day before my birthday. I was as excited as a kid on Christmas morning!

The postman delivered this giant mail bag. Quite possibly the weirdest package I've received. LOL
Once I got into the bag, I opened the box to reveal the book with a hand-written "Thank-You" inside. Very nice touch, Dorian!

Signed on the cover. 
If you haven't had a chance to see Dorian's work, here's a link to some of his work. Drawings from Life Gallery I'd love to see them in a real-life gallery setting. They are so dreamy. Lithe, languid, voluptuous and practically swimming/floating across the pages. Can an illustration convey stillness and movement at the same time?!

Had to take a pic with the book to show you the scale (It's a big book!) and also you can see the original sketch that was included inside (looks like ink, marker and paint were used)

Care to check out some of the other sketches included in the Collector's Editions?
You can find some HERE

Details, details :) 
I am so thrilled with the book - - going to go hover over the pages again ;) If you enjoy figurative drawing, anatomy, the feminine form or just a glimpse into a working mind - - this book is for you. Full of flowing, ethereal forms, it's a pleasure to look through.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Art Supplies - Watercolour

I've been getting so many messages lately, asking what kind of paints and paper and brushes I use.
Thought I'd give you all a peek at some of my supplies :)

If you're thinking of getting into painting in watercolor - - here are a few supplies that I would recommend:

You can grab yourself a "starter kit" of watercolors. I use little tubes of Cotman watercolors by Winsor and Newton. 

Cadmium Red (Deep Hue or Pale Hue) 
Yellow Ochre
Cadmium Yellow (Light or Pale Hue)
Burnt Umber
Burnt Sienna
Sap Green 
Viridian Hue 

Always try to use the white of the paper for your whitest whites and never use black - - mix Ultramarine and Burnt Umber for a dark color instead  

I would invest in a watercolor block (This way all four sides are waxed and you shouldn't have to worry about messing about with taping down edges etc. Just make sure to let it completely dry before removing the sheet to get to the one underneath, otherwise it will curl. I use Arches Watercolor paper - cold pressed 140lb

Brushes can be expensive, but you don't have to spend a fortune to get a good one - - you may try some brands and not like them as much as others. I'm not too picky, as long as it holds its tip and doesn't get too bristly. My largest round brush is a size 12 Gold Sable, My smallest brushes are 00 - - and my medium brushes are so well-used that they have no numbers LOL. Any art supply store should have some good brushes ( I usually spend $5-20) each. (I use round brushes, myself)

Hope this helps!

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Lily & Gus Giveaway

Another Giveaway for you!

This time, I've done a collab with that awesome Lily & Gus and Shanna's Tie Dye.
With Shanna's magical rainbow skills and Ashley's imagination and talent at work, the tie dye whales were brought into being. A while ago I was asked to paint some of these beautiful creatures, and now you have a chance to win it all!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, September 9, 2013

Shanna's Tie Dye Giveaway

I am so excited to be participating in a giveaway hosted by Shanna's Tie Dye.
You can enter to win one of my Butterfly Nest prints and some other amazing pieces by some fab artisans.

Take a look at all of the great items there are to win! Good Luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, September 1, 2013

The oldest Sugar Maple Tree in Canada: The Comfort Maple

"This tree, believed to be Canada's oldest Sugar Maple (acer saccharum) was accepted
for its preservation April 30th 1961, by the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority
from Miss Edna Eleanor Comfort, whose family have owned this land since 1816. She and her late brother,
Earl Hampden Comfort, to whose memory this tree is now dedicated with gratitude and affection,
reserved this plot of land for its protection in 1946"
"O Lord, How Glorious Are Thy Works"

The boys first introduction to the big tree

Looking up at the repairs.  At one time the tree was struck by lightning and repaired with  concrete.
It is also being supported by wires . 

An obliging fence post supported my camera for a family photo
Such an odd feeling came over me while we visited the Comfort Maple. I suppose it was being in the presence of something that has been living for over 500 years, and will likely be living long after I have gone. The land has changed and grown around it and there it has stood, enduring and thriving. What an amazing thing. I like to envision all of the families that have enjoyed moments under this tree's branches over the centuries! Really puts things into perspective and makes me want to relish the moments I have with my own family and cherish each day.
Photo taken by Griffin of the tree and lot

Maple Keys. Maybe we can plant these and grow our own "Comfort" maples. 

Directions to the Comfort Maple can be found HERE


I was very excited to be participating in the Heirlooms show on June 14th and 15th at Vermeer's Garden Centre in Welland, Ontario. The event, in its inaugural year, was organized by the fabulous Erin Snow, who ran the First Sunday Stroll that I was a part of in the Spring of 2012. Erin's selection of high quality artisans is top notch. I will do any show that she organizes, because it is sure to attract a wide variety of beautiful handmade work by established and up and coming artists. Here's a small taste of some of the work that made its way to the Heirlooms show that weekend.
For more photos, you can find the whole album, HERE

Amazing design and branding, these are little embroidery kits. Yes, you have to do the "work", but I assure you it's all good fun, and you will feel so proud when you've accomplished making one of these quirky, sweet characters. I want them ALL!
Find them HERE
Lisa at Skinny Dip Soap was my tent-neighbor for the show. You have to smell these soaps. OMG! All natural, no GMO is the way to go. I also LOVE her packaging. One of her soaps is called "Wash A Hippy" which I find totally hilarious. 
Skinny Dip Soap
The ladies over at Heartmade Fibres were total troopers. Working away with a very new baby is a talent in itself. Great set-up and beautiful pieces! 

Proud new owner of a Heartmade Fibres hat 

Monday, June 3, 2013

Floating Feathers Giveaway

I am so thrilled that my "Floating Feathers" print was chosen to be included in Canada's July Issue of Style at Home magazine! My print appears on page 118, in the workbook section titled "Best of the Canadian Etsy-verse". To celebrate, I am holding a giveaway. The lucky winner will receive three archival prints of their choice from my shop!

a Rafflecopter giveaway