Spring…

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Wow… I haven’t posted anything in here since February. I guess I kinda fell off the wagon with that resolution. Oh well … will try to get back into it again. At least the weather is nicer… and my hair is growing back. I haven’t gotten a cut since the infamous cut back in February. I’m hoping that it will be long enough for the hairdresser to work with in a couple weeks. I have to look good for my brother’s wedding… and my 40th birthday. That’s coming up too soon. We’re about half way into May… and it’s the long weekend (Victoria Day weekend) here in Canada. This morning it rained and I was kinda annoyed, because I wanted to start working in the yard. It’s a mess. This afternoon it kinda cleared a bit and I was able to tackle the jungle out there AKA the back yard. We only have a little manual push mower which is just a step up from cutting the yard with scissors IMO. The first cut of the season is always the worst… and you have to make sure that you keep up with the cutting and not let it slide. Unfortunately… letting it slide is something that normally happens around here… either due to rain or laziness. Anyway… it looks better than it did… but the yard needs alot of TLC. It smelled wonderful under the apple tree. Apple blossoms. The trees are almost pure white. I just took some pictures of it for my reference library that I’m building….

apple tree in bloom

I’m gonna go around with my camera & take some pictures of other flowering trees & bushes around the neighborhood this weekend. It’s just so beautiful around this time of year.

In other news, I’ve agreed to illustrate another book for Pemmican this summer… I need to finish it by the end of August. That’s gonna keep me on my toes. I’ve been rather busy doing design work for the past 7 weeks. I finally got around to doing some sketching for it last weekend. I think this book is going to be really fun to illustrate. The story lends itself more to a more cartoony & whimsical illustration style than my previous book. I love working in that genre. I’ve already fallen in love with the characters… an odd thing to say… but I do that from time to time whenever I create characters. But what’s more interesting about this… is that the characters that I’ve fallen in love with are human… for me that is rare. I’m planning on getting a Wacom Tablet & painting this book on the computer. I love my watercolors but I’m never happy with the colors when they are scanned in. The greens & purples just never replicate on screen & print. When you paint on the computer… what you see is what you get. The color is way purer. Also, I have beautiful light detail in my paintings that the scanner never seems to pick up, which is kinda annoying to say the least. I used a tablet at Image Craft when I worked there. I miss the tablet, even for my design work. Though I’m getting used of the mouse, using the pen is just a lot quicker for some things. So I’ve been looking into the tablets and trying to decide which one is best for me. That’s been kinda fun. Today I was looking at the Cintiq … have a look at this:

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I think that’s the one that’s best for me… but unfortunately I don’t have that kind of money. (it costs about the same as a yearling bull was going for when I lived on the farm… LOL!)  So… I’m thinking of getting the Intuos 3 (6×8) tablet which is a step up from the one I had at work (Graphire). I have a feeling I’m gonna like it too.



Pulling out Hair…

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I’ve been keeping fairly busy doing design work for a client, and have been neglecting my blog.  I know, where are my priorities?  😛  Actually, what I’ve been doing has been really fun.  It’s almost been a new thing every day… and that’s really good because I think I was in a bit of a rut.  I was just thinking that I haven’t designed “one” greeting card this year.  Man, that’s so unlike me!

Speaking of “so unlike me”… last weekend (Feb 9th) I got my hair cut.  I look in the mirror and hardly recognize myself.  It seems that ever since I started getting my hair cut short… it’s been getting progressively shorter and shorter.  This time I think I got it cut TOO SHORT… yup… I think I look like a Vulcan… yeah… like Mr. Spock… all I need is the pointy ears. Well… the good thing about hair… is that it grows back… well… at least mine does.  😉



My Dog "Chip"

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When I was taking the photos off the camera I found this one of my dog that my daughter must have taken… really cracked me up… 🙂

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Snow

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When I got back from walking the dog today, I decided that I’d better do a bit of shoveling because the snow was kinda wet and if it freezes the driveway would be ice tomorrow. After I’d done that, I decided that wet snow is best snowman building snow … and so I made a snowman. It wasn’t long before my daughter came out to help me. Oddly she didn’t show up when I was shoveling the snow. Funny how that is, huh? 🙂

This is her & my snowman…

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After I went in the house… and my daughter made this lovely unicorn…

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She has such a brilliant imagination.

Upon reflection, I realized that the last snowman I built was about 10 years ago when the kids were really young. I certainly don’t recommend waiting this long to have your fun… 🙂



Zooooom week….

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Wow. I can’t believe it’s Wednesday! It’s been go, gO, GO! all week for me…
During the day, I’ve been designing stationery product for one of my clients which has been a lot of fun. Mainly, because it’s getting me out of my “greeting card rut” and making me think a little differently. I’ve been designing stuff that’s kinda “dimensional”. So far, I’ve designed 4 “Tower of Notes”… and designed my first “Note Cube” today. I’d really be interested in seeing these when they’re manufactured. Hopefully, I will get some sample product… that would be nice.

On Monday & Tuesday evening… I taught. On Monday, my usual “Children’s Picture Book Illustration” class… then on Tuesday, I taught “Watercolours” to my daughter’s Pathfinder group. I’m kinda happy that I’m staying in tonight, though we were originally planning to go to church. But, we got a heck of a lot of snow today… and the roads aren’t so nice… so it’s best just to stay home. Michael was really late getting home from work tonight because of the driving conditions.

Once again, the kids had a “Snow Day” because the buses didn’t run. They had 2 snow days last week. That was like a dream week for them! 🙂



Spring Inside…

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We had a big storm warning yesterday and a lot of the white stuff fell from the sky. I was out shoveling the driveway for a good hour… and by the looks of it… I need to do it again today. Sigh.

It does look really beautiful out there. Snow on the trees… really pretty.

I took some pictures this morning. Thought it was a nice juxtaposition. It’s the view from my living room window.. with my lovely pots of spring flowers on the inside and the winter wonderland outside.

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Blustery Day…

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It’s been super cold and windy today. I have my desk set up in front of the window that faces the street. Today was garbage day… and I’ve been watching everyones blue recycle bins blowing down the street like tumbleweed all day. I have a feeling a large percentage of recycled material never made it onto the truck today… I had to run outside a couple of times to pick up stuff that dumped.

I just got in from walking the dog. The wind made it pretty difficult… but we managed to make it home okay without blowing away.

My son has invited a bunch of friends over for a LAN party tonight. They just finished up their exams and this is the way they are celebrating. They’ve set up all their computers in the livingroom. They’ve shut the big baby (my golden retriever) in his kennel, because he was being too exuberant. Now he’s making this pathetic whining noise… sounds like a beached whale. Between that and all the shooting… I have a feeling it’s gonna be a l-o-n-g n-i-g-h-t…..



Lookin' Good…

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Well, thanks to Michael for all his coding and tweaking… my blog looks even better than I had hoped today. 🙂 Thank you, thank you, thank YOU! I’m happy to finally have something that has a similar look and feel to my main website.

And now that I’m finally happy with my online presence… time to start sending out emails to art directors…



Interesting things come in mangled packages…

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package2.jpgCanada PostCanada Post

I think I told you about this parcel that arrived on Monday. It looked like it’d been through a war… when it was only coming from one of my clients in Newfoundland. I was kinda amazed by the state of it… I’ve never had something from the post that had to be “bagged” with a notice on it. With the big hole in the side I wondered if some of it had fallen out, but I don’t think so. Surprisingly, everything looked intact.

What was inside….


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Amaryllis

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Amaryllis BudsAmaryllis with one Flower Open….Amaryllis Flower - Close up

I’ve had the wonderful experience of watching my Amaryllis plant flower this week. These plants are such giants, and kinda remind me of the plant from “Little Shop of Horrors” when they’re still in the bud stage. Then they produce these big gorgeous flowers, kinda similar to lilies.

I’ve been taking pictures of it as it opened up over the week. Appreciating its beauty. I just took some of the pictures off the camera to show. I had to include the one with my dog’s nose in the picture.  It’s just like him to be in the middle of things….

Yesterday, I took it up to my studio and drew/painted a watercolour of it.