important note to self

after a very busy week, with extra days in the office, and a growing pile of post it notes on my work desk, I have the day off…..time for tea and art with my girl…..this very important note to self appears…..this one needs prompt attention!  might have to take it to the office with me on Monday….or is it better kept here….both places could benefit….maybe I will go make some more “fun notes to self” right now!

hope you are moving forward, moving on, letting go and opening up to the possibility of every moment….I am going to keep on trying!  and in the trying, at the very least, I will avoid getting stuck!


not stuck

2016 calendars are ready to make a SPLASH….and a giveaway

As we draw towards the end of another amazing year, it is time for me to get my 2016 poster calendars ready for you!  They make great holiday gifts — just roll up, tie with ribbon, and pass along with your love and best wishes for the coming year.  For the price of a couple fancy coffees (10 bucks), you have art you can enjoy every day of the year!

My calendars are big and bold (12 x 18 inches, with larger font this year, a win for those that have eyes getting older like mine) and printed locally on 100% recycled paper (good for you AND the earth).  Get them in my etsy shop or in a couple fun Gabriola holiday shows coming up….at Black Bird Studios on Dec 13th and at the Pier Gallery Holiday Sale here on Gabriola on the two weekends before Christmas (Dec 12/13 and 19/20).  Of course you can contact me directly to place an order.   Just 10 dollars each (I offer bulk discounts so let me know if you want a bunch).

2016 heart calendar - fill each day with love2016, a pear-fect yearLife is Good 2016 Year-At-A-Glance Calendardive deep 2016 calendar

I am so excited about this year’s designs and hope you are too.  In particular the DIVE DEEP whale tail makes my heart SMILE as I remember a magic day this September when I was surrounded by so many humpbacks!   Here is a photo I took of a whale called Yahtzee (can you see the spots on the underside of the tail?) getting ready to dive down for another mouthful of herring! (Please note the photo was taken from a distance and cropped and zoomed for this view).

Yahtzee diving!

A shout out to my friend The Marine Detective for sharing the magic on that special day and for continuing to do so much to protect our local marine species!  A great gift idea would be to pair my whale calendar with a humpback whale sponsorship — give a gift that supports the important research that the Marine Education and Research Society is doing! 

Here’s hoping 2016 is full of happy days for the ocean and for you and yours!

P.S. Which is your favourite 2016 design? Leave your top choice in the comments and I will enter your name into a giveaway.  The winner gets the calendar they love best! I will close this giveaway at the end of the month.

Update – congrats to Natalie who was the lucky winner and will be getting a calendar from me!

making truth cards

Here’s a peek at something I love to do — make “truth cards” (AKA doodle cards, art cards, inspiration cards).  With only a little bit of time and no rules, you too can make little pieces of art that make a big statement!  Start with scraps of watercolour paper (or tear up your cereal boxes) & some paint (or crayon, markers, pastels)….add a cup of tea, some glitter glue and a typewriter (or your favourite pen), get your hubby to put on some good tunes….you will make MAGIC!   One of my latest cards was inspired by Florence and the Machine’s “Never Let Me Go”….the ocean reference in the song speaks to me and that, combined with the live plankton we checked out with microscopes at our Oceans Day event, made for a very playful little card. I love capturing my favourite quotes or a special moments on these wee cards.  I gift them, I pop them in the mail, I prop them on every table top in the house, and washi tape helps them live on the walls.

What fun, fast art project ideas are you loving these days?  Feel free to share your ideas in the comments for all to see (and try)!

creative blooming!

The birds are singing, the frogs are chirping, the days are getting longer and my creative self is waking up! I think perhaps these early spring days might carry a bit of magic for me.  I have heard that we all have a certain time of day and time of year that we are most inspired, I wonder if this might be my seasonal highlight?  I think that I often I feel this way after the long dreary winter starts to lift.  I think my response in the past has been to save up all my ideas and look forward to the summer when I have time off work and can more easily put the ideas into action.

I am beginning to realize this plan to wait has some serious flaws – the biggest being my desire to be outdoors (beach!!) with my kids and the visiting that fills up the summer days. So this time I am leaping into the creative FLOW that is filling me up — turning the bedside table on every 5 minutes to jot another painting idea in my sketchbook (sleep can come later!), doodling after dinner with my tea and my girls, throwing paint at canvases with so many ideas and no idea what will come next (JOY!), toting a basket full of watercolour pencils and related supplies on our beach trips “just in case”.  I am cleaning corners in my studio (short 15 minutes bursts, more fun, less daunting) and planning creating projects with friends.  I am absolutely LIT UP with inspiration and feel SO ALIVE!

Here’s a peek at some of the paintings blooming in my studio right now….what is inspiring you to blossom at this magical time of year?

P.S. I just checked on our flowering red currant – her new buds are just starting to colour.  Could this be where the pink layers came from during last night’s painting hit?