Friday, 31 October 2014

Silver Belles

Oh, I simply adore when an idea strikes!
Have I mentioned that before?
Ummm, yeah, well maybe I have - once or twice....

But, oh, the inspiration! 
My mind running at top speed - my pencil hurriedly trying to keep up!!
Boom! Pow! WOW!! 



Okay, back to my inside voice...
[deep breath in, breathe out s-l-o-w-l-y]

It may be needless to say but I have a sketchbook filling with ideas!
With the holidays approaching many ideas are popping up
that would make for fun greeting cards!! 

Here is my newest holiday card design for 2014:
"Silver Belles"
 (watercolour, approx 6" x 8")

"Ring a-ling, hear them ring!
I do declare, it's Christmastime at the plantation!!"

Y'all have a darling time during the holidays y'hear!
♥ Cath-   

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Bunny Hill

It's that time of year again!

People are beginning countdowns to Christmas...

Ideas for gifts are being jotted into lists...

Who's going to cook the turkey this year...

For me, this time of year is just a fun time 
to come up with  some cute winter holiday cards!

I had a large sheet of watercolour paper that had suffered slightly 
from a small collision with a loaded paint brush so I chopped the sheet
down into postcard sizes and set to work on some simple, fun designs!

Here's one that fell outta the pencil the other day:

  "Bunny Hill"
(watercolour,  approx 3.5" x 6")

Can you feel the brisk breeze against your nose and cheeks?
I look at this and I can hear the 'skoooooooo' of the toboggan 
as it quickly glides atop the crystallized snow....
All other sounds are blocked out by the wind whipping past my ears...

The simple childhood pleasures of tobogganing...
The pure, white snow blanketing the hill....
The thrill of the descent!
Catching your breath - you only now realize you'd held your breath the whole ride down!
You get up, shake off the accumulated snow, grab up the rope of the toboggan,
turn and realize just how far you've come and you're thrilled!
Then it sinks in just how far you have to climb back up!!
 you take a deep breath and begin the duck foot trudge back up to the top, 
simply so you can do it all over again!


Monday, 27 October 2014

It's That Season Again!

At the beginning of this month Hockey Season commenced...

I know a lot of people who joy in the wins and keep the faith through the losses
while either lounging in front of a television or trying to stay warm in the arena...
It's a Canadian thing!

I made up a few quick card designs that would be perfect 
for a hockey fan to send out for the holidays or anytime 
during the 7-month long regular season!

First, for my uncle, ya gotta have "Baaa-stin":

For my husband's two cousins-in-law, John and Scott, 
and also his second cousin Joel and his son, Joshua
I had to include "The Leafs!"

For my friend Nancy I need to be sure to include "The Habs"

May your hockey season be joyful!

♥ Cath-

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Autumn Down East

I was gifted a special souvenier from a recent trip 
my Aunt & Uncle took "down East" - to the East Coast of Canada.

In Mid-August as they were walking through the village of Baddeck
on Cape Breton Island in the beautiful province of Nova Scotia
my Uncle found a couple Autumn-coloured maple leaves 
which he carefully preserved for the remainder 
of their trip and the trip home...

He presented these beautiful leaves to me and I knew instantly
that I had to capture them on paper - they SO deserved to be
preserved in the form of a painting!

So over the past week I been working on layering colour...



I originally meant to leave them as a simple study on a blank/empty background...
but I wanted create a sense of where they had came from.

So I chose to make them appear to be laying on well-used dock, maybe it's one
of the docks that stretch out into the sparkling waters of the Bras D'or Lake.

"Early Autumn in Baddeck"  
(watercolour, approx. 5" x 7")

I ♥ Autumn whether it's here in Ontario or "down East"!
It's always  inspiring!!



Monday, 20 October 2014

Just because...

It's mid-October and much of the Autumn colour is on the ground...

The grey skies have brought with them days of mist and rain...

The wind carries leaves off the branches and lifts fallen ones off the ground 
creating the atmosphere of a great, golden snowglobe that has been wildly shaken...
On calmer days the leaves are a beautiful kaleidoscope of colour across the lawns and fields...

The trees, relieved of their leafy burden, stretch their long limbs toward the sky, 
having completed their job for another year...

What do I do on days like this,
When going out can be less than desirable?

I try to distract myself from the dreary, damp out of doors by painting.

So I grabbed up some loose pieces of watercolour paper that had been given to me,
and I just drew the first thing that came into my mind... 

"Ain't Nothin' But a Hound Dog In Autumn"
(watercolour, approx. 5" x 7")

Some days you just have to relax and make up your own fun - just because!! 

♥ Cath-


Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Paws For A Bit, Goldens Series

I really didn't know that I would be able to come up with 
enough Golden Retriever designs to make a series.

As I've said before I had a tough time coming up with some cute puns for Goldens.

Then one day I came up with a couple and a friend made a great suggestion 
during a phone conversation one evening and well, a series was established!

Here is the first idea I had when I tried to think outside the "Retriever" box 
and focused more on the "Golden" part of the name:

Card Interior:
"No distance can separate us! 
I'm so glad we're friends!"

(Above design also available as a blank note card) 


And here is the idea my friend suggested:

Ummm, wait just a moment... 
I feel that a disclaimer is needed here, before you continue on...
*Disclaimer: Although my 'Paws For A Bit' dog series cards can, in most cases, 
be used for various occasions the following card design should not be used 
for Bridal Showers or as a congratulatory Wedding card! Just sayin'!

Okay, now that we have that taken care of, here is the design:

 Card interior:
"Wishing you all the best in your future endeavors!"

Hope your day is golden!!

Thursday, 9 October 2014

Paws For a Bit, Goldens

What would I do without friends?

I've been blessed with wonderful friends - I thank God for them often!

When I posted that didn't have a good idea for a golden retriever card
a great friend of mine messaged me with an idea.

She suggested something about "The Golden Rule"

I thought about it, either too much or not quite enough, 
- haven't quite figured that out yet -
but I went ahead and sketched out my idea...

The Golden Rule: "Treat other people the way you would want to be treated."
The Golden Retriever has gifted his people with presents of bones, fire hydrants, tennis balls, 
a perfectly grilled steak on a silver platter and what seems to be the cat wrapped up...

Don't be distressed if you don't get it... my husband and my friend were a bit stumped about it too:
"I didn't get it until you explained it."             "Nah, you're working too hard for the joke." 

So, after a further suggestion by my wonderful friend, 
I had a more simplified idea to sketch...

I was ready to go with it, but then my sister made an additional 
suggestion that created a new take on the idea in my head!

 Card interior:
"Thank you again for all that you do,
I hope one day I can do the same for you!!


Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Paws For A Bit - Lab Series, Part Two

I sometimes - emphasis on 'sometimes' - wish I was punnier...

It's times like this when I am in the midst of creating little illustrations
for my card series and I'm enjoying it so much I wish I could 
come up with more dog-themed puns.

Some thought I was going to introduce Golden Retrievers after my Collie series...
They are one of my favourite dog breeds, but I can't seem 
to come up with any humourous puns for Goldens...
Hmmmm.....  ...maybe one day.

As of today, I have 5 cards in my new Lab series!
I added a new design this morning!!

Here are the next three in the series:

Card Interior:


Card Interior:
"Thinking about you today..."

Card Interior:
"Hope your day is sweet!"

The "Paws For A Bit" Lab series is available:
As a set of 5 (1 of each design)
As a set of 10 (2 of each design)
OR individually.
(Other quantity options available by request)


I do hope your day is sweet!

Monday, 6 October 2014

Paws For A Bit - Lab Series, Part One

As I mentioned in my previous post
I was inspired to design another set of note cards
featuring a different dog breed...

Introducing my new Paws For A Bit - Lab series!
This series - as of today - consists of four designs.

Here are the first two: 

Card Interior:

Card Interior:
"Hoping you feel better really soon!"

As I state with all my cards,
interior message/sentiment can be changed/customized
or left out altogether to allow for use as a blank note card.




Saturday, 4 October 2014

Paws For A Bit: Collie Series, Part Three

For those who may not know, there are two different kind of coats in the standard collie breed:

    "Rough Coat" (like Duncan)                AND                                  "Smooth Coat"

I felt that info was needed in order for the next two cards to make perfect sense...
And now on to the cards:

Card Interior:
"Sorry to hear you're having a rough time."

Card Interior:
"Hope you days are going smoothly!"

The series of six collie cards are available individually or as a set.


Coming soon... 
I was inspired to create another dog series while I was working on this one!
Stay tuned next week for a preview of a special 4-card series!!

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

We Interrupt The Current Blog Posts For The Following Message: Happy October!!


It's true!

That hint of crispness in the air...

That soft golden light of the sun as it begins its descent toward the horizon...

The jewel tones found amidst the changing foliage...

The crunch and rustle of a walk through the leaves...

That perfect moment when the sun is behind you, causing the kaleidoscope of autumnal colours on the trees before you to glow as though they were lit from inside and beyond those glowing branches the sky is thick with the deep blue-grey clouds of a impending rainstorm - WOW! The contrast of colours - the warm fall hues against the cool grey blue hues... the juxtaposition of the sharp angled leaves/branches and the soft misty motion of the storm clouds - it's just breathtaking!

Really, Fall is the only season in which a grey day doesn't feel quite so grey
 - the outdoors just seem to always glow with a soft pleasant light!

It seemed perfect timing that I was re-reading a beloved Canadian classic, 
"Anne of Green Gables" by Lucy Maud Montgomery 

I really love the characters L.M. Montgomery creates in this book 
- especially the main character Anne Shirley,
she sees everything with such a beautiful wide-eyed, child-like heart of wonder!!

I found so many inspiring quotes while I was reading it through this time!
One in particular struck me and inspired the following watercolour doodle:

"Autumnal Walk" 
(watercolour, 7" x 9.5")

Here is the context from the book for the quote I used above... 
Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery, Chapter 16:

"October was a beautiful month at Green Gables, when the birches in the hollow turned as golden as sunshine and the maples behind the orchard were royal crimson and the wild cherry trees along the lane put on the loveliest shades of dark red and bronzy green, while the fields sunned themselves in aftermaths.
Anne reveled in the world of color about her.
"Oh, Marilla," she exclaimed one Saturday morning, coming dancing in with her arms full of gorgeous boughs" 'I'm so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers. It would be terrible if we just skipped from September to November, wouldn't it? Look at these maple branches. Don't they give you a thrill--several thrills?"

 L.M. Montgomery's writing is very inspiring! 
One can so easily envision Anne, Marilla, Matthew and all the other memorable residents
who round out the beautiful village of Avonlea in Prince Edward Island!

*contented sigh*

Happy October to one and all!!

Go outside, take a walk, take a deep breath of the crisp air 
- if you're lucky there may be even a hint of wood fire wafting on that breeze!
Thrill in the colours and soft glowing light that surrounds you!
God has made a beautiful season for us to enjoy!!

Be inspired by it!!


Paws For a Bit - Collie Series, Part Two

Here are the next two card designs available in my new card line:
"Paws For a Bit"
Collie series

Card Interior:
"Wishing you sunshine and abundance of every good thing!"


Card Interior:
"Just checkin' in, making sure all is well!"

These cards, like most of my card designs, can be left blank inside 
or customized with a different interior sentiment.
Hope you are not feeling "Melon-Collie" and that your day "borders" on inspirational!