Saturday, December 25

feeling the pinch: a small hiatus

It's been a little while since I've posted, and indeed, a little while since I've done new work. Unfortunately the last ten days or so have been a little trying, and have gone by really, really fast. I'm sorry I didn't post anything sooner, but I've come today to announce that I'll be taking a very brief break from posting, just until the New Year.
I need a little time to organize my thoughts and my life, make new work, and spend some quality time curled up on the couch, computer in hand.

I hate to do it, but I feel like the quality of my posts would be inconsistent and frankly, not very good. Rather than fail to live up to my expectations, I think it's best to take a little break and come back ready and refreshed.
Thanks for checking in, and I'll be back before you know it with new goals, top threes, and most importantly, new art.

Thanks everyone!

Thursday, December 16

thursday already

It's going to be another short post today, I'm afraid. As promised, I wanted to post my three top favourite Christmas movies. These are the ones that, if I don't see them it doesn't feel like Christmas. Here we go -

National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation. I can't even think of which part is my's the greatest from start to finish.

The movie that solidified my love for Michael Caine. However, I always have to fast forward through "the Love is Gone" ...that song is insufferable.

You'll shoot your eye out!

Honourable mention goes to Home Alone (the first one), It reminds me of what a luxury it is to be able to eat ice cream for breakfast if I want to.

Tuesday, December 14

new work, new goal

The first thing I wanted to do is post a quick picture of the boots I was so excited about getting in Montréal. I've been wearing them almost everyday and they are super comfortable, in addition to keeping my toes warm. I've stopped biking for the winter (too cold!) but I'm still walking to work almost everyday. The half hour walk is made much, much easier with warm, happy feet.

On another note, I'm gearing up for the holidays, but the excitement hasn't come yet. It could be the fact that I work retail or it could be that I know this is the first year I won't be home for Christmas. It's also probably the fact that I have barely even begun to think about gifts for people - I have no idea what to get for most of the people on my list and, just like everything else in my life, I can hear the clock ticking. I hate thinking of the holiday as yet another thing on my ever expanding to-do list...but I'm sure as soon as I watch one of my top three Christmas movies (wait for Thursday!) I'll feel the Christmas cheer. Sigh.

Here's some new work! I photographed rather than scanned because my scanner is currently topped with a bunch of papers and boxes and I didn't quite feel like moving it all. Yes, laziness has to win sometimes. I've also decided to do two text only drawings this week in anticipation of a new project I'm working on for the new year.

Another sketchbook project page. I've decided to go ahead and announce my next mini weekly goal today. The vegetables-every-day thing is going well - so far, so good. As a compliment to that I've also decided to cut out McDonald's indefinitely (or until I lose five pounds). I'm a little ashamed to admit how often I eat (ate) there, but the combination of low cost, super convenience, and shamefully awesome flavour have made me a McDonald's fiend of late. No more!

My new weekly goal is in honour of the the looming deadline for The Sketchbook Project. I've decided to do a page a day for the next week. I may not have time to blog my progress each day, particularly since I'm going home this weekend for an early Christmas, but I'll keep everyone posted.

Until Thursday!

Thursday, December 9

it's that time again...

It's Thursday - and time for my next top three. No art house looked like hoarder's house so I had to do a little cleaning this morning. I did, however, have time to think of my list for today. Last night at work I got to talking about comic books. I love comic books. I haven't read any books (comic, graphic, or otherwise) at all since the summer, so I've decided to do my feature this week on my three favourite ones. They're not listed first to last, rather, they're in autobiographical order...that is, in the order I read them. I think that's fair.

First is Margaret Atwood's Oryx and Crake. I'm not sure how many times I've read it now, but I always get sucked in completely. Margaret Atwood creates a not-too-distant futuristic story about the environment, food, science, food science, and human nature. I'm not going to go too far in depth, but I will say that if I don't read this every year and a half or so, I feel like there's something missing. And it's my Canadian addition to the list!
Next is Orson Scott Card's Ender's Game. I didn't love the rest of the Ender series, but I did love the complimentary Ender's Shadow. They should be read back to back, in my opinion. I also read the Ender's Game comic book series (by Marvel), and while it was very well done, I think the story really benefits from the novel form - the story is much more about characterization and hero psychology than it is about outer space.

Finally, Chris Ware's Jimmy Corrigan, The Smartest Kid on Earth. It is my comic book addition to the list and it is breathtaking. Which sounds really, really cheesy - I'll be the first to admit - but it's an apt description. This book made me cry. And not just a little tear or two welling made me cry like a three year old who stubbed her toe. But the art and writing are both incredible. I could read it over and over, which is saying a lot because this book is like a marathon. I should know, I wrote two papers on it (simultaneously, but on completely different topics) in third year.

Okay folks, I'm officially a nerd. Two sci-fi books and a graphic novel. Ah well, check back on the weekend for art!

Wednesday, December 8

mini weekly update

I don't have much to show right now - no pictures! I'm sorry! But I wanted to talk a little about Montréal set my next weekly goal.
First, Montréal was great. After the long overnight bus ride there we were met with a bright, cold, sunny morning in a new city (well, new for me anyway). We got to where we were staying, dropped our bags and decided what we wanted to do first. It was still too early for lunch, but one of the stores that sold my boots was only a few minutes away. I tried them on and then they were mine! I even wore them out of the store like a kid. Then, working from my top three list from last Thursday, we decided to go for poutine and toasted hot dogs for lunch. Apparently hot dog buns that are buttered and toasted are a Quebec thing and I have no idea why it hasn't caught on everywhere - they were awesome. We then trekked to Jean-Talon market, then met a friend for food and beer.
Saturday we slept in then went to Schwartz's for one of the best sandwiches of my life. Who knew meat, bread, and mustard could be so amazing? With full tummies we walked to the Museum of Contemporary Art and spent the rest of the afternoon there. We rounded out the day with dinner at Joe Beef and drinks at Au Dieu de Ciel (again).
Finally, quick brunch on Sunday prepared us for the eight hour bus ride home.

This sort of brings me to my Mini Weekly Goal update from last week. I wanted to decide which schools to apply to and get started on the process. It's cutting it really close since applications are due in a month, but better late then never, right? I've decided on the four schools I'll be applying to and I've asked people for reference letters. I'm getting there, slowly but surely.
I wasn't sure whether I wanted to apply to schools in other cities but I'm realizing (and some time away helped) that Toronto is home for now, and I really don't want to leave. I know that my choices are limited by not wanting to leave, but...the heart wants what it wants. And it wants Toronto.

My goal for the coming week is a little simpler. I'm trying to eat healthier keep up my energy for the gym. I know that eating is really important for health and weight loss, so my goal for the week is to eat fresh vegetables each and everyday for the week. This should be a no-brainer, but convenience usually wins and I find myself eating McDonald's more than I'd like. Not this week!

Art post and new top three tomorrow :)

Thursday, December 2

art post and top three thursday

So, I have to say au revoir once again - I'm going to Montréal for the weekend, and I'm leaving tonight at midnight. I'm not relishing the 8 hours spent overnight on the greyhound bus, but at least I'll have my beloved by my side and the promise of beer and poutine to keep me afloat.

Which brings my to my second Top Three Thursday post!
I've decided to post on the top three things I'm excited for this weekend. I have never been to Montréal before and I have a feeling I am going to fall in love.

The first on my Montréal top three is poutine. For any non-Canadian readers this may seem like a weird, heart stopping mix of unhealthy junk, and to be sure, it totally is. Is is also, however, so much more. Fresh cut fries; fresh, bouncy cheese curds; and...brown sauce come together to make an awesome and satisfying meal. Or snack. Or snack then meal. Poutine is awesome and being an Ontario...ite? means that though I've had some decent poutine, I know I haven't had the best.

The next thing I'm excited for is the Blundstone boots I've promised myself. They're hipster-ey, warm, and cozy, and after months and months of being broke (not to say that I'm sleeping on a bed of money now, or anything) I'm really looking forward to spending a little money on something a little cooler than bills, groceries, bills, rent, and bills.
I know I can get them in Toronto - the blunstones store is only steps from one of my places of work - but this weekend away coincides with payday and I can't wait until I get back.

And finally, I'm really looking forward to going to the Dieu De Ciel brewery. I love beer. I'm not that big on wine or cocktails...I don't even like those grenadine-infused "girly" drinks that I'm supposed to be genetically predisposed to like. But beer? love.
Dieu De Ciel make really good beer that I've only recently had the pleasure of trying, and I'm excited to see them in person and hopefully try some varieties I haven't yet.
I'm going to continue cleaning and getting ready, since I'm heading to the bus station straight from work. I'm bringing my drawing stuff, so hopefully after the combined 16 hours of bus travel I'll have some new art to post when at get back. I'll have some photos at the very least.

And Happy Hanukkah to my Jewish friends and readers! <3

Thursday, November 25

...aaand fifty!

Here we are, post number fifty, and I'm excited to announce my two new weekly features:

Top Three Thursday is going to feature little lists of threes based around a chosen theme for the week. I've already been doing this from time to time but I've decided to make it official and finally create some focus for all the time I spend mindlessly searching the interwebs.

My mini weekly goal will be just that - each week I want to set a small goal for myself and achieve it by the time I introduce the next goal. I hope this might prove to be fun and interesting, and I intend for my goals each week to span many different topics - personal, artistic, practical, and just fun. I'm not sure what day of the week to feature this, or if it should just be a sort of...whenever thing like my art posts. Either way, I came ready to do posts on both features today. I'll start with my goal for the week: Decide which schools I want to apply to for MFA programs and begin the applications. It's not the most fun, I know, but it's something that's been on my mind for about a year and a half now and I want my applications this year to be well planned and thought out.

Now for today's Top Three Thursday post.
The very first list of things I posted on this blog was of things from around the internet that inspire me. So I've decided to kick this feature off with my top three favourite blogs (that also happen to keep me inspired).

The first is A Beautiful Mess. I check this blog a few times weekly and am always pleasantly surprised by how often Elsie is able to post! There is always, and I mean always, new content and it isn't just quantity. She has a few fun weekly features (a clear inspiration for me to begin mine) and great photos. It's a craft, art, and lifestyle blog that I can't get enough of and she has just begun a new one to keep her readers up to date on her wedding plans.

The next is Velvet Pony. I've mentioned it before and the reason why is because it's one of the first blogs I ever read on a continuing basis. I found it when looking for some photo inspiration for a class assignment a year or two ago and even though the blogger doesn't really write anymore she always manages to find beautiful photography from Europe and across the world.

The next is Julia Pott Illustration. I know I've also mentioned Julia Pott before, but I love the way she is able to extend her illustration and style across so many media - from totes and zines to illustration and marketing. I don't know exactly what I'm working towards as far as my career goes, but I know for sure that I would love to have such a clean, consistent style and be able to learn the skill set that would allow me to do seemingly everything!
So that's post number fifty. I'll be back soon with new art, updates on my goal this week, and updates for my other blog. Thanks for sticking with me for this long and here's hoping for another fifty (at least!)

Wednesday, November 24


This is my forty-ninth post - which is completely meaningless, save for the fact that I have some plans for my fiftieth. As in, there are two new weekly features that I want to introduce and will do so as part of my fiftieth post. This is, of course, in addition to the fact that the blog itself is a weekly feature, showcasing my new work week by week. That's not going to change, I promise.

Now, I knew that today was not going to be my day when it started. The first indication was the icy blast of cold weather as I left the house to walk to the gym this morning. Yesterday was so mild, I just wasn't expecting it. No big deal though, it's November and Canada - I should have seen it coming. The next thing to go wrong was when the guy at Starbucks called me "Sir" as he handed over my tall bold. I mean, granted, I was wearing a toque and a black softshell jacket (nothing girly) but really? Sir?
Moving on, my next discouraging moment was when I finally got to the gym and realized that due to the worsening cold that I fear has now made it's way into my lungs, I felt dizzy and completely unable to face the treadmill. I hadn't even taken off my coat when I decided to turn back, head home, and hope that my body is ready for a workout tomorrow. At least I got 20 minutes of exercise walking there and back.

Now for some art-

Here's another spread from my Sketchbook Project book. It's coming along, but to be honest, I kind of wish I had put a little more thought into designing something a bit more cohesive. I also wish my scanner, which is otherwise awesome, seems to overexpose all of these scans. It's probably a settings thing that I just need to figure out.

I decided to photograph this page instead of scanning. I bought this really cute letterpressed receipt book (made by drop around) from The Paper Place and though I'd use it for real receipts (if I ever sold anyhthing) I am also enjoying using them in things.

Speaking of The Paper Place - I went in last week and in addition to the drop around letterpress stuff, I also bought some more patterned Japanese papers and the beautiful robin's egg blue linen tape pictured above. Just thought I'd mention it. Isn't it pretty?

And finally, I'm in the process if getting the installation images from my show in August edited and colour corrected. Here's one of my favourite pieces. The bird is puffy and quilted and the piece is framed in a really sweet shadowbox. It's 5" x 7" (and totally for sale).

Monday, November 15

sketchbookin' 2

Once again, I've decided to do some more quick sketchbook drawings. Between working on my book project and the sketchbook project I've been doing some more serious work lately and this morning I just wanted to do something fun.
It'll be a quick post today: not much is new here, and I'm still (as always) getting a grasp on how fast time seems to be going. I still (as always) feel like I'm being crushed by to-do lists, but I am helping myself out with better time management. Now I just need to get a grasp on my breakfast. It's just after 10 am and all I've had so far was five mini reece cups.

Sunday, November 7

Pink Blah Blah

I usually get Sundays off, but today I covered for a friend. Nevertheless, I came home and then went on a date for crepes at Crêpes a GoGo. It was a pretty great afternoon, but now I've got a total case of the blahs. You know when it comes out of nowhere? When you feel great and then you feel tired and like your brain's not working anymore? I've got that going on right now. Ah well. I've decided to post a few pink things from around the nets in an effort to jump start my evening. I'm really, really not a pink person but I figured maybe, just this once, it'd do the trick.

I saw this journal from Blackbird Letterpress on Craftgawker quite a while ago. Brittni from Papernstitch had originally posted about them and that's how I came across their site. I'm entranced by letterpress and their designs are gorgeous.

This chair was posted on Ink & Spindle. I think it would totally go with my fire engine red couch - I need one!

And finally this lamp.
It's a little too girly for my apartment but it's really neat. And they have lots of other cool designs.

Wednesday, November 3

New Art & Art Toronto

Another two pages for my Sketchbook Project book. I've been chipping away at it bit by bit, but it's tough - I really need to hunker down on it in order to get it done in time to send away in January. Luckily, I've decided on a more effective way of organizing my time (much needed, given the fact that I'm currently balancing two jobs). I've assigned each of my four ongoing projects (my class, my grad school applications, this blog, and the sketchbook project) a day of the week that I force myself to dedicate to that project. If I happen to have that day off, I can dedicate the whole day and get a bunch done. If I only have a couple of hours before/after work, then a few hours it's better than nothing after all. Fingers crossed that it helps me get more done and feel less overwhelmed.

I loved the little bird in the batman-ish mask last week so I decided to do a little repeat.

In other news, I got to go to Art Toronto over the weekend. I went for a specific reason, but on both Saturday and Sunday made time to walk around and check out most of the galleries. Just to explain, Art Toronto, or the Toronto International Art Fair brings galleries (and their featured artists) from all over the world into one place. Artists set up booths that act as mini galleries and people flock to see (and buy) the art. I wish that I had thought to take some notes or write down some of my favourites. I have no idea why I didn't think to, I usually write down everything, all the time. On my hands, in a notebook, on the back of a crumpled receipt...

That said, one piece I do remember (and knew would be google-able) was this one by Damien Hirst. I'd heard of him and his diamond crusted skull before but never really looked into his other work. The gallery representing him in Montréal had a large display of several of his pieces, the one above included. There was another one with it that was more pink and green and it's impossible to tell from the picture but all of the red in this one was glittering with diamond dust. If the print didn't cost more than a year of my university tuition, I would have brought one home. There was also a painting that was about 18" x 12" (give or take) of multicoloured circles...for $200,000. Ah well. Maybe one day I'll be able to throw some paint onto canvas and legitimately charge more than most people make in a year.

Monday, October 25


I mentioned in my last post (Friday) that an art post would follow (on Saturday) well, today's Monday, and here I am with my belated art post. Sorry, folks.
On the whole, it's been a good weekend - I finally decided yesterday what I'm going to dress as for halloween! Here it is:

yeah, I'm totally going as Max Fischer from Rushmore. Last year I went as Clark Kent, and the year before that (I think) I went as Margot Tenenbaum. I'm such a typical art student - I heart Wes Anderson.

Here's my new art - I'm just posting a few sketches, by no means are they finished drawings, but sometimes it's nice just to doodle with no intention of do "real" work.

You can also see a glimpse of one of my many to-do lists!

I wanted to try drawing a bird in a little batman mask (left) and in a Fantastic Mr. Fox-inspired bandit hat (right).

Friday, October 22

I've been thinking lately about my little autumn project: giving my (our) bedroom a little makeover. As I've mentioned before, when we moved in back in May, I paid a little attention to how the living room (aka the only other room in the apartment) looked, but completely ignored the bedroom, just kind of throwing the rest of the stuff in there and only going in to sleep.
Now, this project won't be a huge one, I don't have a huge budget for this (meaning that I have a budget of around zero). The nice thing about the internet is that like window shopping, it's free to look, and when I have time I love doing so. Here's a few favourites,

This post is titled I'm Dreaming Of... and blogger Kirsten Grove posts a few other wallpapers by Aimée Wilder. Well, I'm dreaming of them too, now.

I just wanted to include this image because it's such a cute photo, and such a cute chest of drawers. It makes me smile. [credit]

I stumbled across this post by someone who did all of this in their room for under $100! I'm inspired, and I have to know what thrift shop she went to to get that headboard for $8.

And finally, this apartment therapy roundup of teen bedrooms makes me wonder who these way-cooler-than-me teens are that they can have these awesome bedrooms and I'm stuck with dirty socks on the floor and tangled sheets on the bed? I'm an adult now, and should have a way cooler place to lay my head.

Art post tomorrow, g'night!

Thursday, October 14

New Art & Book Covers

I've been thinking a lot lately about making myself be even more productive...I need to do more work! There's a show I'm planning on submitting to with a deadline coming up soon, there's my independent study (for which I have a due date next week!) and then, last but not least, this blog. My original intentions for creating this blog was, after all, to stay productive after graduation.
Luckily, I have a new job which might mean a little more free time for creative work. I'm not sure how everything will come together, but fingers crossed. If not, I can at least drink a lot more coffee. It's been awhile since I've pulled an all-nighter.

I mentioned in a recent post that I bought some blank wood postcards from The Paper Place. I finally got around to making something from one of them. I plan on doing the other two soon, and hopefully more intricately, to be framed in a shadowbox.

Also, I bought myself a little present (even though I have less than no money...) I bought this collection of 100 vintage Penguin cover postcards. I love, love, love them. Aside from being fun to look at they will also fuel my recent and unrelenting interest in design. I'm also planning on framing some of them and including them in the bedroom makeover I want to start working on after the holidays.

Sunday, October 10

Art Crushes

So, I noticed today that I've a lot of posts about things I like - interiors, craft projects, even outerwear- but I haven't posted a lot about other artists. This problem for me goes way deeper than just not posting - I am really bad with name retention and even worse when it comes to remembering artists and contemporary art. Since I'm hoping to apply for master's programs in a few weeks I'm kind of fretting about the fact that I seem to be the only one of my art school peers that doesn't know that much about living, breathing, working artists. I feel like this void of knowledge is holding me back which is part of the reason why the independent study I'm doing this year is focusing quite heavily on readings on contemporary art.
Anyhoo, this post is the result of some internet time wasting over the last little while, resulting in stumbling upon two artists who are making drawings that I can't get enough of.

Katrin Hagen of Mischief Champion does these amazing drawings twice a week and according to her about section they are "a collection of regularly-updated drawings based on my every day observations. Sometimes these observations are harsh, sometimes silly. Somehow, they're mostly rather insane. " I came across the website during the summer and I spent a couple hours sitting at my desk going through the archives alternately laughing and going "awww".

Marc Johns I just found last night, while perusing a different blog I read sometimes. Similarly to the Mischief Champion website I just sat and went back thorough his blog for ages. I missed my 10pm bedtime by an hour!

Anyway, the good thing is I'm feeling inspired, so expect an art post soon!

Friday, October 8

Long Weekend!

Yay! It's the long weekend and I actually have all three days off! It was kind of an accident - I originally booked off Saturday and Sunday for a trip to Montreal, but it was postponed and I forgot to un-book the days off. Then, after telling my boss I could come in Monday, she gave me the day off anyway! Yay for [Canadian] Thanksgiving and getting a bit of work done. And there's a lot of work to be done, believe me. There's this blog, which though I have been updating regularly, feels like it needs a little more tlc. Then there's my independent study course which I'm so, so excited about but haven't been able to really delve into yet, and there's my sketchbook project, happy thoughts of productivity are currently running through my head.

Here's another sketchbook project spread, going along with my chosen theme. I'm enjoying my progress so far, but I want to slow down and take some more time with some of the pages - I want at least some of the pages to be more "finished" looking and so far they've been pretty sketch...ish. Maybe this weekend, we'll see.

I've also recently ordered five new designs for greeting cards, so now there's a total of eight of my designs available. This is a little peek at the new designs and packaging. You can check out my etsy to view full images and to buy, if ya want.

Wednesday, September 29

Free Time

I always wish I had more, but when I get it I never really know what to do with it. I'm a compulsive list maker, in fact, making to do lists is pretty much a daily ritual. Luckily I was pretty productive with my free time today, and I've got all of my chores lined up for tomorrow. Now I'm just winding down, making dinner, and waiting for the evening to start. I don't have to get up early tomorrow - and I got to sleep in until 8:30 this morning! - so here's for finally enjoying my evening.

After posting that picture of the pom pom toque in my last post, I figured I'd throw one on this little guy.

Another spread for my sketchbook project book. I want to incorporate a few pages of straight up text, and I used to write a lot more, but I tried writing for this page and I couldn't come up with anything. The thought bubble on the right side was supposed to take up the entire page, which I thought would be pretty neat looking, but when I went to write it I couldn't come up with a thing! This will be my goal for this project - I want to re-learn how to write a page of text.

Monday, September 27

Stormy Weather

Well, it wasn't exactly stormy today - just a little soggy - but it felt like one of those days where I just wanted to stay on the couch wearing a big sweater and watching crappy tv or movies - or crappy movies on tv. Unfortunately, I worked all day and am going to bed at 10:30 because I have to get up at 5 again tomorrow. C'est la vie. Anyway, I just wanted to do a quick little post before my art post on Wednesday (my next day off).
Since it was cold and rainy out today, and it is now officially autumn, I figured I would indulge in a little bit of girliness and post some cozy fall clothes I wish I could afford.

This coat from Anthropologie is so pretty, and I love mustard yellow.

This dress from modcloth is cleverly disguised as a trench. I've decided the one new fall item I buy this fall is a trench coat. I think everyone looks good in one and it always looks dressy. I think I would feel like a real live grown-up wearing one, instead of a high school student in one of my well worn hoodies. Not that there's anything wrong with hoodies.

This hat is also from modcloth. Last year, my cat ate the pom pom off of my favourite toque. If I buy a trench for fall, I am definitely getting a new pom pom toque for winter.

Check back Wednesday for new art!