Saturday, July 14, 2018

Shannon and Augusto's Wedding Invitations

My sister Shannon and her now-husband Augusto got engaged on their trip to the east coast last year. When she got back from her vacation, she asked me if I would help with the wedding by working with them on the invitations and all of the special day-of pieces. Of course, I said yes!

She wanted something romantic but not too overwhelming and she loved the idea of a wreath. Her wedding flowers were going to be pink roses, so we decided on pretty florals for the invitation theme.

She had the cutest text for the RSVP card! I love the simple greenery to tie the pieces together. We also gave the backs a little pattern of florals and some pretty hand-lettering with their names on the back of the RSVP. (My sister said she liked this part the best of all, haha.)

I also designed return address labels and stickers (!!) to go with their favors. I love designing stickers, it's kind of the best thing ever. For the day-of, we had place cards at every seat and a seating chart made from an old window frame. The venue was wonderful, the weather was perfect and my sister looked gorgeous!

I was also the wedding photographer for this particular event and I am now working on editing all the photos! This is the second wedding I've shot for my family, I also did the photos for my youngest sister Lauren and her husband Adam. I feel honored to have been so involved in both my sister's weddings, especially them trusting me to take photos during their wedding day. These invitations were wonderful to work on and Shannon was basically the best bride ever ("just do whatever you think is good," she said, you can't beat that!).

More photos of the actual wedding once I've done all the editing! For now, enjoy the invites!

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Max & James Baby Annoucement

When our best friends told us they were expecting, Aaron and I were over the moon with happiness! Then they asked me if I would design an announcement for them so they could share their new addition with friends and family who weren't on social media and those far afield who couldn't come visit. This was probably the most honored requested I've ever had in my life, so I was so pleased to be able to work with them.

Since they weren't finding out the gender of the baby, we decided to go with a neutral design that would work for either a boy or a girl. Max liked the idea of a woodland animal and we settled on a baby fox. I did all the painting and designing almost two months before the baby was born. The only thing missing was the name and date! When Elouise was born, I got the phone call to start practicing their lovely lady's new name and add it to the card.

Something special about these little cards is there is a secret inside ...

When I was designing the card, I did a little doodle of a baby to illustrate where the photo would go. Max and James both loved the scribbly baguette baby, so it stayed in! We decided to hide it under the photo so when unsuspecting recipients took the picture of Elouise out, they would get a little surprise! We also added her birth stats too, as a keepsake inside. On the back I made a tiny logo with their last name and the date, just because I love having the year printed on the back of cards.

I also gifted them the original fox mama and baby for Elouise's room. It's something they can have when the card gets put away. This was such an adorable and lovely project to work on, especially with good friends of mine. I am so proud of them and their little girl, and I can't wait to be part of little Elouise's life as she grows up!

Thanks for reading!

Sunday, December 31, 2017

Website Launch!

Something I've been meaning to do for a long time (a very long time ...) is get a website up and running to act as a portfolio for my work. The blog is fun and all but it makes it difficult to highlight any specific work as people have to sift through lots of posts to find anything. So over the Christmas break, I got to work, for reals. May I present ...

It's about time! I've been working on getting more work up recently and really editing the pieces I want to share. Moving forward I'll be featuring more work on the website and posting more on Instagram and my Facebook artist page. My blog will remain here as an archive, but at the moment I'm still deciding on what role it will be playing in the future.

One thing I'm really excited about is having a domain name all to myself! I've been thinking about it for a while now and I finally took the plunge into just purchasing it. That finally pushed me to get something up and running to really show my artwork. So go check it out! Update your bookmarks if you still roll that way!

Also check out my shop for some new work, like the peonies and poppies above. Also available is my blue jay from my Christmas card! Let's celebrate the end of 2017!

Thanks for reading!

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Blue Jay, Christmas 2017

Merry Christmas Eve everyone! I am a little late sending my Christmas cards this year. I wasn't able to get them out until mid-December so I'm only sharing them now! In any case, it's a nice thing to share on Christmas Eve, don't you think?

All of my Christmas cards have featured some kind of Canadian wildlife in a winter scene. Last year, I went on a little bit of a bird kick and painted a chickadee. Chickadees are very common in the winter in Ontario. Aaron and I have a bird feeder on our back deck for the cat to be entertained by and there are always chickadees around. This year I decided to continue the theme and paint a winter blue jay. Blue jays are also common around here, though none have visited our back yard bird feeder just yet!

For my cards in the past, I would have them printed two-to-a-page at Staples and cut and fold them myself. This year I used the same printer who did our wedding invites and thank you cards so they cut and fold them for me! I love the way the matte cardstock makes my paintings look, so much nicer than the glossy paper that Staples uses to print on. It's definitely a personal thing, but I am so happy with the printing of these cards! Especially with the inside message, there is much less trial and error happening when the printer does it for me. I've learned a lot creating these cards; getting my artwork to print correctly and to look clean and beautiful, how to set up a file for print so there are minimal issues, setting up for double-sided printing. It's been a lovely learning process! Looking back on previous years, it's really neat to see how my work and the cards progress.

Wishing everyone a wonderful holiday season this year and a fantastic new year. Thanks for reading!

You can see my Christmas cards from previous years here! 2011 and 2012, 2012, 2014, 2015 and 2016.

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Society6 Swag Review

I recently re-opened my shop on Society6 with new artwork that I have been working on in the past year. I originally chose Society6 because I had ordered prints from them before and was super impressed with their quality. They have so many more items that you can order now! I took advantage of one of their sales to order some of my own work on different items to see what they looked like. I'll admit I was being super selfish and only ordered things for myself! I wanted to do a review of some of the things I got, so let's jump in!!

This is a super simple notebook that you can get lined or unlined paper. It has a matte wraparound cover which I just love! It's a little big for a pocket journal, but it's a good size for a notebook or a sketchbook. My only gripe about this product is it's difficult to see where your artwork is going to wrap around the back of the notebook, so I'm not really happy with the placement. Seeing it in real life, I will be "fixing" it so the bird's beak isn't being crossed by the binding. It's an easy fix and it's not that big of a deal; I get the feeling that most of Society6's products are meant to be repeating patterns so that placement is not an issue. However, I personally am not crazy about the placement and I'm glad that I have the chance to see how I can make improvements to uploading my art for future notebooks.

Small Pouch
Admittedly, I have a thing about pouches. I love them. I buy too many of them. Aaron often asks, "what would you put in it?" to deter me from buying every pouch I see. I could not resist getting a little pouch with my logo on it, it's so cute! The colour print is so vibrant and printed on both sides. It's lined, has two wee comparments and has a very nice brass zipper. I love it! There are 3 sizes; I ended up getting the smallest size so it would fit in my purse and I could organize the 15 lip chaps I have in there. I always end up with so many ... does that happen to anyone else? At least they are all contained now.

Coffee Mug
The coffee mug is so cute, guys, so cute. The colour of the artwork looks great on it and it's a standard mug, not too big or too small! Landscape artwork works best on a mug like this, I think, so my other works didn't really seem to fit well as they didn't wrap around. I think a full print of a watercolour wash would look super awesome on a mug like this. Maybe an idea to come?

When we were checking out the products on Society6's page, Aaron said he thought it would be cool to have the Key and Quill logo on a shirt. So we had one made for him! It's a basic white shirt with the logo mid-chest. Maybe it's just me but, the print on the pouch is so much more vibrant and the shirt seems washed out. I am not sure what process they use, and granted, the shirt and the pouch are different fabrics so the ink may not have the same properties. Aaron said he likes that it looks "vintage" so if he's happy, that's fine, he is the one wearing it!

Oh my goodness, the pillow! This is my favorite item that I ordered. We have a watercolour feather pillow on our couch already (I think I got it from Walmart or something) and a friend asked me if I painted it. I said no, but I couldn't get the idea out of my head! I really liked the feathers I painted for our wedding suite and I thought they would be a perfect fit for this pillow. The colours are very rich and look great on the fabric. It also has a zipper so it's washable which is a bonus. This pillow is super fat and plush. It might get softer the more it gets sat on. But I do really love it and it looks super great on our couch. It's really cool to have a memento from our wedding that we can look at everyday!

I'm really happy with all of the products that I purchased from Society6. Of course, as the artist I am a little bit picky about how my work appears on things, but I wouldn't hesitate to purchase from Society6 as the quality is so good. I'm working to get more of my artwork into the shop as soon as I can! I have a few more peices that I would like to upload, some more flowers and my newest Christmas card (coming soon!). You can check out my shop here!

As always, thanks for reading!