Thursday, February 28, 2013


Illustration Friday time again!  This one is coming in just under the wire - what a week we've had!  Every single member of the household had a violent stomach flu - all at the same time!  Yes, as bad as you are picturing it - and worse!
Anyway, I will write about that later, for now, here is my picture of the week - Whisper:

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

IF - Wool

Hello!  Another Illustration Friday accomplished.  I gotta say I am enjoying the portability and flexibility of watercolour.  It's compact, easy to pack up, and doesn't dry and get wasted the way acrylics can.  So much easier to pick up and put down, when you have to fit painting time around the lives of two very young children!  Anyway, the word this week is "wool" - one of my favourite things!
This is what I ended up with:
She's floating in space a little, but there was no time to go back in.  Anyway, that's kind of how you feel when you're knitting, I think.  

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Winter, winter, winter

Hello again!  Well, we survived another blizzard. And even though the weather is not great, it's really not that terrible.  As I sit and look out the window, I can see the sun shining, a little red squirrel eating something out of the tree, and some bare ground.   We spent a good portion of the day outside today, and, while I know that I may live to regret saying this, there is a feeling that Spring is around the corner.   Not here yet, not even imminent,  but starting to dream it's way back into reality.

We had a lovely Valentine's Day, with a special cupcake making and decorating party, and a trip to the city.  Jai and I were "working" most of the weekend, so we didn't get a lot of time to spend together, but still it was nice to get out of the house, and visit with my parents.  We love it, and the kids do, too.  The grandparents love it, too, though I suspect they are glad to see us leave again, at the same time.
These winter doldrums can be hard to beat, so it's always nice to shake up the routine a little.  It doesn't seem as though we will be winning any trips to Mexico this year, so we may have to come up with something else.  Maybe a faux trip to Mexico, with the kids?  That could be fun.  Tacos, margaritas (with and without alcohol!), maybe a trip to the nearest indoor pool? (nearly 45 minutes away), and a few episodes of Dora the Explorer... Might stop Griffin from running laps around the house, which is what he's doing in the top picture.  He starts and stops at that wall, and between each lap he shouts, "Again, only this time do it faster!"

Anyway, I can hear Griffin in the other room lecturing Holly, so I should probaby go.  I hear, "No, Holly, I'm telling you No!"  Might be time for Mom to intervene!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

The Poster

Speaking of the Dayliner show (which I did in the last post), here's the poster, just in case you can come :)

IF - Storm 1 and Storm 2

Hello!  Another week of Illustration Friday!  This week the word is Storm.  So Jai had an extra band practice this week (Dayliner is playing two shows in Halifax this weekend) and I had an extra night to myself.  I managed to get one painting done on Saturday:

 Which I liked, but wasn't 100% satisfied with.   I wanted the composition to be a little different - not so spaced out, and I wanted it to be softer somehow.  I drew it out again with the charcoal, and really liked my charcoal drawing.  I wanted to preserve that feeling, and still get paint on it.  So I did some experimenting with watercolours.  First I drew out two characters with the charcoal on some scrap paper.  The first one I did with an acrylic line over the charcoal, and then watercolour over top of that:

It was close, but not quite.  Then I painted the watercolours directly over the charcoal, and was much happier.  Aha!

Now all I needed to do was paint my picture.  And here it is:

You can click on it to make it bigger.  I do like this one - it only took three (four?) tries!

These are really big paintings (the one above is 14" x 22") and I have only a very small scanner, so I needed to scan it in six parts, and then patch it all back together.  There might be a few places where it's  got a funny shadow or something, but mostly it's pretty good.  Next time I will try and remember to keep it a reasonable size, and one that could fit in a standard frame, too!

Which one do you like best?

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Holly's New Jumper

We're having a nice, lazy day around here, as the world outside recovers from the latest blizzard.  We didn't get hit too hard - our power stayed on, and we were nice and cozy warm with the woodstove going.  Griffin and I made cheddar &  bacon muffins, and everyone's been happily munching away on them all day long.

Speaking of making... I actually made a thing for Holly!  So here it is, everyone that helped!  Holly in her new jumper.  This is a pattern from a library book, and I needed a lot of help, mostly because they pattern they provided had the pockets printed upside-down.  I thought that might be so, but I'm not an experienced sewer, and didn't trust myself.  It took both my Mother and my Mother-In-Law to get this done, and my friend Ambre to pick up the fabric from the store - truly a group effort.

When it was done Jai asked me if it was worth it.  Yes, I said.  She's going to wear it every day.

(Yes, that's a big stain down the front.  Of course!  I just had to give the kids a big pile of strawberries with their breakfast.   Luckily, it disappeared once dry (three cheers for brown corduroy), but here it is in the pictures, recorded for all posterity!)

Anyway, I know this was brief, but I've got to run for now.  Kids, you know.
The whole house smells awesome - we have a big pork roast from pigs raised by our friends, cooking away in the slow cooker.  Yum, yum.  Hooray for snow days!

Tuesday, February 05, 2013

IF - Wheel (Again)

Hi again!  Holly actually napped!  I had twenty-five minutes to myself (practically alone!)  I did another doodle.  I'm posting it, too.  Illustration Friday, take 2.  This one is entirely digital, with my tablet.  But I just know that everyone in our house loves a school bus drawing!  Maybe, someone in your house does, too :)

IF - Wheel

Hello again!  Here's my Illustration Friday piece for the week!  The word is "Wheel."  This is a page from a story I have in my sketchbook.  It's all about a little girl who really loves her blanket and takes it everywhere.  Her parents try to get her to give it up, but she won't.  They even try to bribe her with a bicycle.  (Sound familiar, Mom?)
  We have pictures of wheeled things all over our house, but I wanted to get this out of my head, if I could.  I'll probably end up doing it again one day, because now that I can see it on the paper, I can see some things I might do differently.  Still, it's nice to see it on paper, instead of in my head!

Monday, February 04, 2013

These inside hours...

Hello! Here we are again!  Tonight, Griffin was so tired that he requested bed an hour earlier than usual.  Holly and he are both tucked in their beds, sound asleep, which is probably where Jai and I should be, too, but since it's not even eight o'clock yet, we're staying up for at least a little longer!
I don't really have any news to share around here.  I've got a bunch of photos of us playing with our food.  Too many hours inside the house.

 She started it.

 Holly is starting to walk a little more every day.  She's not really sure it's a good idea  yet.  Although climbing onto the bench, and then onto the dining room table is certainly an excellent idea.  One that she never seems to tire of.  
Too many hours inside.

We did go to a birthday party for Griffin's friend, Ella, the other day.  That was fun.  These kids are turning four already!  What?!?!

Mental note: enjoy this time while it's here.  I'm reading "A Short History of Nearly Everything" by Bill Bryson right now.  It's been sitting on my shelf forever, and finally the time was right.  I'm loving it, but was really struck for some reason, by this quote:
"Even a long human life adds up to only about 650,000 hours."